Ali Sweatshirt Review / My First Pattern Testing Experience

Upon being introduced to the sewing community I learned a lot of things about the sewing world. One specifically is the job of pattern testing, and I had the opportunity to test a pattern from one of my favorite pattern designers!

If you don’t know what pattern testing is, a pattern designer/maker announces a request for volunteers to sew a pattern they are working on releasing. Generally they will choose people of various sizes to test make the garment. Perks? You get to test a new pattern for a designer and generally you get a free copy of the final pattern once it’s done.

Beth, owner and designer behind Sew DIY, had an IG story up one day calling for testers specifically in the xxs and large sizes. As most of Sew DIY’s patterns are loose fitting I figured I fit in the XXS range that was needed and filled out the application to volunteer.

Well what do ya know? I got chosen to pattern test! I got an email that told me the details and the deadline and a PDF copy of the test pattern.

About the Ali Sweatshirt

The Ali Sweatshirt is a drop shoulder loose fitting sweatshirt. When I noticed the back yoke, I knew I wanted to color-block this thing. I’d had some leftover sweater knit in my winter fabrics drawer so I got to work printing. The next day I cut out my pieces and began sewing. One thing about this sweater that’s cool is that a twin needle can be used around various seams to give it a more sporty look (it also helps keep the seams down). I was slightly intimidated as I’d never used a twin needle before and I’m not a fan of working with knits, Beth thought of everything though and gave tips and tricks to working with knits and twin needles and sergers in the instructions. I used my serger/overlocker for this whole project and then after using it I would go to my regular machine and twin needle top stitch any areas that needed it. 2 hours later, we have a sweatshirt! You can see my pictures down below of my version. I colorblocked the yoke and the bands of the sweatshirt and used an orange top stitch for contrast.

This sweater knit was very stretchy with little resilience and bounce back so it added more of a slouchy look as i continued to make it because it stretched itself out. I love the effect though!


Closing Thoughts

The Ali Sweatshirt is an awesome sweatshirt for lounging, working out, or for nice and easy cover-up. It truly can fit any need depending on the type of knit you use with it. Light or medium weight fabrics can be used for versatile designs and more heavyweight fabrics can be great for fall and winter weather and cozy evenings.

Pattern Testing was SO fun!!! I’m going to sign up any chance I get. It’s the best way to get your feet wet in something new and help a pattern designer get their release off the ground. It’s also a good way to try out some new patterns and skills in sewing.

I enjoyed knowing that I was making something awesome for myself but assisting someone else in their endeavors. Beth is one of my favorite pattern designers because her patterns are comfortable and easy to make and wear. It was such a privilege testing for her!

Be sure to check out Beth’s other patterns in her shop here! And for more testing goodness and examples check out the testing roundup on Sew DIY blog!

Have you ever pattern tested before? Share your experience in the comments below!



2 thoughts on “Ali Sweatshirt Review / My First Pattern Testing Experience

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