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threads 146-Circle Vest?

gailete | Posted in Feedback on Threads on

Have any of you ambitious ladies here attempted the circle vest in the latest issue of Threads 146? It looks like the perfect thing to keep drafts off my shoulders and neck which leads to arthritic pain. I’m concerned about the measurements of the armholes to position them. As I am a plus size lady I don’t want to end up with it too tight and hard to get into. I’m having trouble with my Left shoulder and can’t reach back to get into an armhole that is to close together. Anyone looking at the article think it would be okay to just make it bigger with the armholes further apart? Also it calls for knit ribbing. Shouldn’t bias binding of some sort work also? I hate the thought of having to go out and buy more sewing stuff and then for whatever reason it gets shoved in the corner and I can’t finish it.


  1. Meg | | #1

    Well, I've been *thinking* about making it.... I think that for us who are more 'upholstered' might make that arm slit a bit further apart than is shown on the model in the magazine, though.

    1. gailete | | #2

      That's what I was thinking. I am scared to make it where the armholes are on the model would mean our arms coming out the back at a weird angle, but it sure looks like it would be cozy in fleece or something lighter weight in summer.

  2. Ckbklady | | #3

    Hey Gail!

    I see your concern about the armholes. I hesitate to say I would "do a muslin" as that sounds so formal, but I would take an old bedsheet or washed fabric length and test the armhole position, later using it as a pattern. A bedsheet would be great because you could cut multiple samples and move the armholes around with each test.

    I also think bias binding would be pretty and would make it "A Gail Original" which is very cool.

    :) Ckbklady

  3. User avater
    _nikki_ | | #4

    Hi Gail,

    Have you tried to make the vest yet? You can always find a garment that fits you comfortably, measure the distance between the armholes and use that measurement instead.

    And for binding the edges, you can use another fabric for the binding. Just make sure to cut it on the bias for a woven, or on the crossgrain if it's a knit.


    1. gailete | | #5

      I've been too sick to do anything lately. Also having major trouble with my left shoulder and trying to put on and take off clothes and coats. I hate arthritis! That vest looks so comfy and I have some fleece I think would work for it. Now just to get some energy for sewing.

      1. cycler1729 | | #6

        Did you see this? http://wkdesigner.wordpress.com/2007/09/ Look at THE SHRUG about 3/4 down the page. It doesn't work out as long in the back as it shows and it's just 2 seams and a hem or binding all around.

        1. gailete | | #7

          That looks even better than the circle vest as it covers up arms a bit, but all that measuring and drawing is past me at this point. Right now I would love it if someone would come and sew me up some clothes till I get past the point I'm at. Nothing fits as I've lost weight and just not feeling up to sewing. I've had a chuck of prewashed fabric sitting on my cutting table for weeks now and can't get moving on it. Have the pattern sitting there also, but right now I don't know what size I am either and it seems like whatever my measurements say what size I am, it never works out right. Either way too big or small. I have to readjust my dummy down to whatever size I'm at now and that takes hubby's help to get it right and I hate bothering him as he has been helping me so much lately with necessary things like food, walking and showers. Sorry to be so whiny. It is frustrating that something I really enjoy doing feels so far away from my abilities right now.

          1. cycler1729 | | #8

            You're allowed! I think the only great thing about aging is that we get to be crotchety all we want!

          2. Sancin | | #9

            Oh, Gail, I hear you. As a nurse I knew many of the problems of chronic disease but until I actually developed one/several (arthritis and fibro)I wasn't truly aware of the degree of exhaustion that goes with pain and mobility changes, even when 'under control'. I read somewhere that self maintenance takes up much of ones' time. That is what frustrates me the most, even when having good days! I so wish it didn't. Sending you good healing energy. Did you catch it? It isn't just arthritic type of conditions, either that require a lot of time spent on one's activities of daily living. Hang in there and remember "this too shall pass" and tomorrow is a new day.

          3. gailete | | #10

            Ex-nurse here too and thank you for understanding. This has been a rough year as my pain meds messed up my gut to the point food wasn't digesting (gastro paresis) so I had to go off the narcotic pain meds except for the really awful days, and the med they gave me for my stomach caused horrible depression (cried the whole month of October) so now off that, so the arthritis doctor thought maybe we could try Humira! HA!!! Like someone on disability could afford that. I'm in the donut hole already so I would get to pay $1600 a month for just that one month and when the year starts up again the co-pay would be $500/month! So that is a no go and now they are suggesting Remicade at the hospital every 8 weeks. Any experience with that?

            I understand what you mean about ADLs. Some days taking a shower can take up to an hour or more because you have to figure in the recuperation time afterwords, so needless to say, can't do that every day. But I do take my naps. They did find a virus (CMV) that I picked up in my blood stream that of course I can't prove it at this late date but I took care of a child with that virus when I was a student nurse in the 80's. I think it came back to bite me. Oh well, I feel a bit better today so hopefully I can get something done today.

            Thanks for the understanding. I am almost housebound at this point so don't have many people to talk to and it helps when others understand. Hoping I can get stabilized somehow again so I can carry on with my simple life.

        2. stillsuesew | | #11

          I love the look of the shrug that is pictured on the weekend designer site. But if you read the comments you discover that the pattern given does not produce the shrug pictured. Not very nice.

          1. cycler1729 | | #12

            I know - I mentioned that it isn't as long as the one in the picture.  The directions produce the typical cropped shrug but it is really easy. 

        3. joyfulneedles | | #16

          What a neat site.  I just spent about an hour checking out the different designs on Weekend Designer..  There are several I would like to try, including a reversible wrap skirt and the take-off on the courier bag.  Thanks so much.

          Edited 11/21/2009 11:15 pm ET by joyfulneedles

          1. cycler1729 | | #18

            You're welcome!  I'va also copied quite a few that I want to do!

  4. zuwena | | #13

    Guess what. That "vest" is not new to Gatherings. Back in 2008, DonnaKaye, who has not been heard from for a very long time (but, who, like her mother is a master sewer) gave us that same pattern. And, because some of us were a bit more confused that others, she provided extra direction and explanation, one of which involved the appropriate placement of the armhole slits and, yes, you can use regular bias binding. I refer you to the Gatherings archives for the entire discussion starting with 8657.1 where she sets out the pattern and the ten or so follow-up discussions about specific issues. Hope this is helpful. Enjoy. And, I feel your pain in my shoulder so hang in there.
    Z (RN in another life)

    1. gailete | | #14

      Hey thanks! I finally got ambitious enough yesterday to cut out a Vogue pattern for a dress and was surpised to find it is only 4 pieces with a bias binding for the neck (I was expecting facings). Anyhow I got the tissue cut out and the 4 pieces ironed flat and ironed the prewashed fabric that has ben sitting on the cutting table for well over a month. I really need a winter dress so this is going to be piority, then we will see what my next project is.

      How do you people decide what you are going to work on next? I always have so many projects that I want to do and it seems like the 'I needs' always pull ahead of the 'I wants'. If I could get more done like I used to I don't suppose it would be such a big deal to me. Maybe the fast sewers can just pick and choose what they are doing, or is setting pirorities something we all have to do?

    2. starzoe | | #15

      There really isn't anything new under the sun - as the saying goes. This is a well known knitting project as well. A local paper had an extensive article on a young woman who is selling what is basically a poncho that has five buttons and buttonholes on each end along with an extensive praise of her originality, creativity and skill.In my mind the "creativity" comes from resurrecting an idea and selling each one for multi bucks. She deserves credit for that.

    3. funkyjazzdesigns | | #17

      I've noodled around trying to find this discussion that you reference and haven't had any success.  Can you give me some direction on how to do this.  Thank you,


      1. Gloriasews | | #19

        I think it was called 'Patternless Projects', but I've searched the archives, too, & can't find it.  It might be as far back as 2007, now that I think about it.  It was definitely DonnaKaye who shared her mother's patterns, though.  Maybe you should contact Customer Service.  Sorry I can't help you further.

        1. funkyjazzdesigns | | #20

          Thanks so much for your efforts and info.  Right now I think that I have to let it go until after my busy season.  If it shows up, it was meant to be.  I think I'll just go with the current issue info as well as other inspirations for the same kind of garment that are out there.  Again, thanks.


          1. User avater
            ThreadKoe | | #22

            The discussion and pattern are discussed under "Torn Projects". http://forums.taunton.com/tp-gatherings/messages?msg=7292.1 this is the link to the actual pattern posted by Donna Kaye. There are a whole bunch of instructions posted under this on patternless sewing. I think you will find them interesting. Cathy

          2. funkyjazzdesigns | | #23

            Thank you for finding this, I do so appreciate it.


          3. Gloriasews | | #25

            Oh, thanks to you a CAFMS - that's exactly what it was called!  I'm glad you both found it - no wonder I couldn't, eh?  Must have been having a senior moment or several :).


      2. cafms | | #21

        I think the discussion you are looking for is under General Discussion and is called Torn Project: The Circle Cape. It is dated 6/29/08. Message # 8657.1http://forums.taunton.com/tp-gatherings/messages?msg=8657.1 Don't know if this will show up as a working link or not but this is the location and the beginning of the discussion.

        1. funkyjazzdesigns | | #24

          Thank you, I appreciate your finding and posting this.


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