Alexa, make a jumpsuit

OK, it’s a dodgy title: apologies! I couldn’t resist though!

Clearly, the make I want to share with you today is the Alexa jumpsuit by Tilly and the Buttons. I’ve had the pattern and fabric for this jumpsuit for quite some time (i.e. since it was released in May) but it didn’t get to the top of the to make list (thanks to a distinct lack of sew-jo) until just before our week in Northumberland in August.

I jumped (no pun intended!) on the jumpsuit bandwagon some time ago and spend a fair amount of time in dungarees and jumpsuitsS the style of this one really appealed to me: it’s got a slightly military vibe with buttoned chest pockets and optional sleeve tabs. It can be made as either a jumpsuit or playsuit; there are buttons from the v neck to the waist and the waist is gathered with a drawstring.

I chose to make an almost exact copy of one of the pattern samples, using a tencel twill I bought from Bobbins and Bolts. As always, Gem’s fabric was absolutely gorgeous, a good weight but with a beautiful drape which makes it really comfy to wear.

As with all of Tilly’s patterns, the instructions for this are impeccable. I graded between a size 4 at the bust to a 5 on the waist and hips, which was a very straightforward adjustment. I then added my usual 1.5cm to the centre back seam.

I did, however, do a couple of things which I’d do differently another time around. The first was pure laziness which backfired on me. I looked at the beautiful, heavy fabric and decided that it really wouldn’t matter if I overlocked the seams in a contrasting thread. And that actually, the red my overlocker was already threaded with would be a beautiful contrast. This is, in itself, entirely true. However, it finally dawned on me as I got to the sleeves that, if I added the sleeve tab as I’d wanted to, the red contrast thread was REALLY going to show up as the inside of the sleeve would be visible.

That was the end of the sleeve tabs!

The second thing I’d do differently is to ADD MORE POCKETS. I honestly don’t know how it didn’t dawn on me that the pattern doesn’t have either hip or back pockets. I was so distracted by the chest pockets that it simply never registered . Right up til I had it on and wanted somewhere to put my phone.

This omission genuinely impacts on my enjoyment of the garment. Much as I’d like to be someone who swans around not attached to their mobile, that just isn’t my life. I want somewhere to pop my phone. And my hands, whilst taking photos! Another time, I would adjust the pattern to add front pockets and possibly even back pockets too. It might look less stylish but it would work better for my life.

Other than that, I’m really pleased with this pattern. It was straightforward and enjoyable to make, and it is so comfy to wear! The photos were taken after a day working from home, so the creases are kind of inevitable, but with the tie waist it is just so easy to wear. The only thing I would say is that it is slightly harder to wriggle out of than any other I’ve made: this is presumably the result of the sleeves together with the front only parting as far as the waist instead of further down the front seam.

I imagine it would be a great garment to wear to meet friends for lunch or out shopping. You know, if we ever get to do those types of things again? Fingers crossed for next summer!

Becca x


Pattern: Alexa jumpsuit and playsuit by Tilly and the Buttons

Fabric tencel twill from Bobbins and Bolts

My measurements

Bust: 36″

Waist: 32″

Hips: 42″

Size cut 4 grading to 5 on waist and hips

Adjustments made added 1.5cm to the back rise as usual for me

Future adjustments? Nope, spot on as they are!

Make again? Quite fancy the playsuit for next summer!

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