After months of editing and sewing I finally have the Central Park Swing Coat ready for your sewing pleasure! This little jacket started from a sketch I drew in my little big idea book last year. I started playing around with drafting the pattern months ago, and four samples later I am pretty much in love with it. It is so fun to sew and the possibilities are endless. My favorite part is that it is reversible, which makes it not only super versatile but quick and easy to sew with no seams to finish (no serger needed!). With no button holes or zippers this is a perfect project for beginners too. As is it will fit 3t-5t but it would be super simple to adjust to different sizes, and we’ll go over that in the end.
As for wearing it, the coat has become a favorite. It fits nicely over anything she wears and allows for comfortable play without any bulk.
You could add one big button, or two smaller buttons like shown above for a variation or just keep it simple with an elastic cord to pull over a button. Like I said, there are so many things you can do with this pattern. I can’t wait to see what you do with it! That’s the best part, seeing what fabrics people use, seeing how they switch things up and especially seeing the little ones wearing them. It’s like seeing my doodles from a little book come to life – makes my day!
Catch me after the jump for the pattern and tutorial!
Do not let all the pictures and text scare you off, this really is a simple pattern. The tutorial is very detailed, as in I cover every step. I want any skill level to be able to make it. I provided a print option for the tutorial at the bottom. Using it you can delete text and photos you don’t need to save on ink. You can even save the tutorial as a pdf to your computer.
So print it off and get sewing! Add your own personal touch, try it in a tweed (I’m dying to see it in a tweed!), maybe a silk for a Holiday coat to cover that pretty dress…surprise me!
Central Park Swing Coat Pattern And Tutorial
Please read through the tutorial before you cut and sew. There are a few things you need to know first. Seam allowance is included on all pattern pieces. You will use a 3/8 inch seam allowance throughout unless noted.
Suggested Fabric and Requirements:
You will need 1 yard for each side, so 2 yards total. You can get by with 3/4 yard for each, just don’t make any mistakes! If you are making a 5t and would like it to be a longer length you will need at least 2 yards total.
I used a poly suede and quilting weight cotton for all the coats I have made. Twill, tweed, corduroy, denim, linen and linen blends, would all work great too. If you are using a heavier fabric make sure to use the appropriate needle.
- all your sewing stuff
- matching thread
- button(s) or some sort of clasp
- hot iron and board
Instructions: Printing the PDF pattern and pattern assembly:
There are ten pages total and you will want to print with no scaling or select “none”. Click here for a direct link to download and print. This is my preferred method. Or for those of you printing at the library and can’t down load (I’ve been there!) you can print the Pattern Pieces Through Google Docs here. On the first page I provided a 1 inch mark to make sure that the pattern printed the correct size.
I marked the front and back panels with A and B, and there are four pieces for each. Just line the paper edges up like shown and tape.
If there is a break in the pattern line like shown above, that’s okay. Just line up the paper edges and your set. Do not attempt to match the lines up. Assemble both the front and back panels and cut out. Then cut out the sleeve and yoke pattern pieces.
First look at the fabric to see if there is a specific direction you need to pay attention to.
Fold the fabric in half and pin back panel pattern piece on the fold where shown and cut. You will need one back panel from each fabric.
Then with the fabric still folded in half (so there are two layers with wrong sides together), pin the front panel to the fabric and cut, this will ensure that you have a left and right panel. Then repeat so that you have two front panels from each fabric giving you four front panels total. You will cut the yoke pattern in the same manner, giving you two right and two left of each fabric.
For the sleeve, cut two from each fabric.
Assembly: We will start with the front panels. Sew a gathering stitch (longest stitch on my machine with no back stitching) 1/4 inch from the edge (line fabric edge with presser foot) across the top of each panel like shown. Now pull the bobbin thread and gather it to match the length of the length of the bottom side of the yoke. You can see in the picture that I kept my gathers to the center, and leaving an inch at the edges, I will show you why in a minute.
Pin the yokes to the front panels with the right sides together, keeping in mind that there is one for the left and one for the right panel. The shortest side of the yoke should line up with the arm hole, and the longer side to the front opening. When you pin just work the gathered fabric to bend around the curve of the yoke and adjust the gathering to match the length, still keeping the gathering towards the center.
Now with your stitch set back to normal, sew each of them together with a 3/8 seam allowance. Don’t forget to back stitch!
Once you have all four sewn, iron the seam up like shown in the picture.
Now top stitch along the bottom edge of the yoke on all four panels. I like to use a slightly longer stitch length for a nice look, and then press with an iron to set the stitch.
In this picture you can see how the gathers are focused to the center. It will make the panels pucker in the right place when all sewn up.
Now were going to sew the panels together. Take one of the front panels (working with the same fabric) and pin it with the right sides together to the back panel lining up the sides as shown. Sew up the side and then repeat with the other panel on the other side. Then repeat with the second fabric.
Press all the seams open like shown.
Now lay one side down on a flat surface with the right side up. If you are plan on adding elastic cord or tube made with the fabric to pull over a button you would add that now. Just make a loop and lay it on the yoke towards the top with the loop facing in and the ends lining up with the edge and pin.
Then lay the other side on top with the right side down lining up all the edges and pin.
Before you sew it up you need to decide where you are going to turn the coat out. If you want to top stitch all around the perimeter of the coat when finished then I would leave a five inch opening along the bottom of the coat. In this case when you close the opening the stitch would go unnoticed. That is the way I did it with the blue floral coat.
For the suede coat I decided not to add a top stitch around the perimeter so I opted to leave the neckline on the back panel open to turn out. Either method works great, it just depends on the look you want.
Now starting at the inside corner of the yoke by the arm hole, sew along the entire outer edge, except for the arm holes – leave them open! If you are leaving the neckline open, just sew away. If you are leaving 5 inches at the bottom open, don’t forget!
When you get to corners just lift your foot 3/8 before the edge and rotate the fabric.
Now clip your corners so they turn out nicely.
Turn the coat out, using a pointy object to get the corners out all the way. Be careful not to break the stitch. Press all the seams. I like to first lightly press the seam open like shown..
Especially where the yokes meet and then press them flat, you just get a more crisp edge that way.
If you left the neckline open turn the edges in 1/4 inch and sew them together, still leaving the armholes open.
Now the sleeves, almost finished! Take one of each fabric (so the fabric won’t match) and lay them right sides together. Sew the outer edge (the longest edge) with a regular stitch with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Then sew the inner edges (the neckline, smaller) and sew a gathering stitch 1/4 inch as well.
Gather the inner edge so that when you stretch it flat it measures about 4 inches. Again, keep the gathers towards the center.
Now sew along the gathered edge with a 3/8 seam allowance. As you sew make sure that the gather aren’t being pushed out, or you will end up with no gathers. Just push them along with your fingers, lifting the foot a bit if you have to.
Now turn out the sleeve and press the outer edge flat. You can top stitch along both edges if you like. I did on the one, but opted not to on the suede coat. If you top stitch on the gathered edge make sure to keep it gathered.
Working on the coat again, turn the edges of the armhole in about a 1/3 of an inch (little more than a 1/4) and press.
By my third attempt I learned it was easiest to turn the edges under about 80% of the way down on each side and pin,
Then fold over and line up arm holes, then turn in that last little bit at the seams and press.
They should look like this when your done. Lined up on the edge and at the seam.
I pinned all around the armhole, and especially at the seams so that the edges stay turned in.
Now take the sleeve and slip the ends in between the two layers about a 1/2 inch. One end of the sleeve will go into the front panel, one end into the back panel. You’ll have to take out the pins to do this, then pin it again. Work the neckline edges to make sure they are lined up nicely.
Now just sew all the layers together right along the edge. Make sure that the stitch is getting all the layers. The inside panel, sleeve, and back panel. Take it slow and pay attention.
I had one spot where my stitch missed the edge of the inside panel, I just un-stitched that portion fixed it making sure to catch the original stitch in my back stitching. Repeat on the back, and then the other sleeve.
If you are not top stitching around the perimeter you’re finished! If you left the bottom open when turning out, press the edges in to match the bottom stitch. Starting at the top of the yoke on one side, with a little longer stitch length sew all around the perimeter just along the edge ending at the other side at the top of the yoke. That stitch should close up the opening on the bottom.
That’s it! Easy right?
All you have to do now is add the fastening method of your choice. If you added a loop to pull over to a button, just sew on the button. I added a fun hook and claw type clasp and just sewed it to the suede side with a needle and thread. I bought mine at Hanckock’s fabric. Or make your button holes and button if that is the way you decided to go.
Then slip it on them, stand back, and admire your handy work!
Then let them go to see it in action! I hope you have fun with this pattern, I worked really hard on it and am pretty proud with how it turned out. You’re officially a pattern tester if you make one so be sure to come back and leave a comment with any feed back. I will add a flickr group so we can see everyone’s work.