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Archer Pleated Popover Variation Tutorial

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Back when we introduced the Archer Popover Variation Pack we had a lot of people interested in a tutorial on how to put a pleat at the bottom of the center front placket. Today we’re going to show you how to do just that! You’ll need to make a few alterations to your pattern to begin but overall this is a very easy pattern alteration.

Please note that you will need both the Archer Pattern and the Archer Popover Pattern to complete this variation.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

1. To start you’ll need to add a 1″ extension to the center front edge of the shirt starting at the end point of the placket slash (labeled “End Point” on the pattern) down to the hem.

2. The edge of this extension becomes the center front edge of the new pattern piece.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Once you’ve cut your pattern, take your front and stitch around the placket area just shy of the 1/2″ seam allowance. This will give you a guide to work with in the next steps. You can alternately mark this line with chalk.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Measure in 1/2″ from the edge of the placket opening and mark.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Bring the marked point over to the stitching line on the other side of the placket opening and pin the pleat in place.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Stitch across the bottom of the pleat from one side of the fold to the other to secure the pleat in place during subsequent steps.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Now continue as you would for step 01 and 02 of the popover instruction booklet. Your placket will look like this.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Before cutting the placket open as per step 03, double check that you’ve caught the bottom of the pleat inside the seam of the placket. You don’t want the edge of the pleat to hang over the sides.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

Cut the placket open as you would in step 03, the only difference is that you only need to cut along the placket line on the actual placket piece as the shirt is already separated. You’ll need to cut into the corners of both the shirt and the placket.

Continue with the steps as written in the instructions.

Archer Popover Placket Pleat Variation from Grainline Studio

It’s a pretty easy variation, just a little bit of pattern prep and you’ve got a different look for your next Archer Popover! I left the triangle on the bottom of my placket but you can just as easily omit that part if you prefer a flat bottom to yours. Hope you enjoyed this tutorial variation and if you make one be sure to use the hashtags #archerbuttonup or #archerpopover on social media so we can check them out!

7 Comments Posted in Archer Sew Along, Pattern Tutorials, Sewing Tutorials
Sew & Tell

Sew & Tell | Kristi of sweetkm

Grainline Studio | Tamarack Jacket

We are excited to share this Tamarack Jacket that Kristi made! The buffalo check and chambray combination is so dreamy.

Name Kristi

Where can we find you online? sweetkm

Link to your post about this sweetkm

Which pattern did you use Tamarack Jacket

Grainline Studio | Tamarack Jacket

What type of fabric or other materials did you use? The outer fabric is Robert Kaufman Mammoth Flannel. It’s very sturdy for cotton flannel, and perfect for outerwear. The lining is Robert Kaufman Chambray Union Indigo.

Grainline Studio | Tamarack Jacket

Tell us about your project! I made this jacket to wear out to dinner for my birthday. Buffalo check is normally a very casual fabric. I liked the idea of dressing it up with more refined garment construction so I could wear it out for cocktails. I wanted the jacket to seem as polished as possible so I used the inner layer of fabric as a lining to conceal the pocket bags, rather than quilting it to the rest of the body. It’s a great jacket so I also wanted to make the bold color, and print as versatile as possible. To satisfy myself that this wasn’t going to be a closet white elephant, I did some wardrobe brainstorming and came up with 3 sure thing combinations for my Tamarack. Most of the pieces I already owned, and I made a new black linen Scout Tee for the most dressed up combination. Sometimes I wear my Tamarack as outerwear, and sometimes in place of a blazer or cardigan. The bold print choice turned out to be a lot more versatile than I expected.

Kristi 4

4 Comments Posted in Sew & Tell
Journal Entry

Grainline Crew | Lexi

Grainline Studio | Crew

There has been a lot of change happening at Grainline Studio in the new year. We have new patterns coming out and 2 new staff members here to make Grainline Studio even better! We are going to be introducing the new members on the blog in these up coming weeks along with some updates from our creators.

We are psyched to introduce you to Lexi! Read on to find out more about her and what she does at Grainline Studio.

Where are you from?  I grew up in the northwest suburbs just outside Chicago.

When did you start sewing and what is the first thing you sewed? I learned how to sew in home-ec class in 5th grade. We made pillows which I thought were soooo boring… so I made a pattern for an elephant pillow, which they  actually still use today! I really started to sew passionately though, that summer before 6th grade.

What do you do for Grainline Studio? At Grainline – I sew muslins and samples for our new patterns. I help proofread the instruction booklets and pattern pieces. I suppose I’m also a brainstormer and self proclaimed “behind the scenes” photographer.

What is your favorite Grainline pattern to sew? As I am still fairly new, it’s hard to pick favorites. But, I would love to make the Alder Shirt Dress, the Cascade Duffle Coat, and the Portside Travel Set! That being said, one thing I love about the Grainline patterns I HAVE made so far, is that they are all really fun to sew! I’m not just saying that because I work here! You don’t just make one and done; you’ll want to make more and more.

What is the funniest thing you have made? I’ve been freelance sewing for almost a decade, so I’ve gotten a lot of strange requests over the years! I think some of the funniest would have to be- a body sail I made for a paddle board enthusiast, or a GIANT coin costume I  made for a kickstarter video.

What do you do outside of Grainline Studio? Outside of Grainline- I still have a few lingering freelance clients. I work as a lab tech/tutor at Columbia College Chicago (where Jen and I graduated together), and I’m a “preservationist” at the School of the Art Institute’s Fashion Resource Center.

What is your favorite thing to do in Chicago? It’s a hard choice because I love Chicago! But #1 has to be the Garfield Park Conservatory and #2  going for dim sum in Chinatown!

Lexi Interview 2

4 Comments Posted in Journal Entry
Journal Entry

Design Details: Graphic Line Drawing

Design Details: Line Drawing | Grainline Studio

I’ve been keeping a board on Pinterest called Design Details for a while now, just pinning anything that I found interesting. The other day while cleaning up my boards I noticed I had quite a collection of garments with these embroidered line drawing details on them. They remind me of a more subdued sartorial version of the Lichtenstein paintings I would stare at during trips to the Art Institute of Chicago in high school.

It looks to me like these details are a combination of piping, applied cord, or a satin zig zag stitch. I’d love to experiment with this technique a bit, I think it would be a great way to add a bit of humor to your wardrobe. The Archer would be a great base for any of the shirts shown above, or it could be a fun way to refashion an existing shirt. I have some ivory poplin set aside for one, maybe if I’m feeling brave I’ll try something like the lower left. I’ll let you know how it goes if I do! Would you ever try a graphic embellishment like this?

17 Comments Posted in Journal Entry
Driftless Cardigan

More Tips for Choosing Fabric & Sewing your Driftless Cardigan

This post was originally posted as part of our Lark Tee Sew-Along but everything here applies for the Driftless Cardigan as well since both require at least 20% stretch. I wanted to repost this updated with additional information for the Driftless in case you missed it the first time around or weren’t sure if this information applied. You can see the post here in it’s original form.

Lark Sew-Along: Working with Knits

We had a few questions about picking your knits after the last post, how to order online and what types of key words you’re looking for when ordering. Generally speaking if you see the word jersey you’re on the right track. Jersey knit is a fabric that is knit on one side and purled on the other, and usually has a pretty good amount of stretch. As far as the fiber content of the fabric, that’s a bit harder. In the photo above we have two cotton/hemp blends, a poly/lycra blend, and 100% cotton from bottom to top. For the Driftless Cardigan you’ll want to avoid going below 20% stretch as this will affect the drape of the cardigan resulting in a much more rigid outcome.

If you’re worried about a fabric you’ve seen online, we recommend contacting the seller, they may be able to either test the stretch for you or send you a swatch. 20% stretch is less than it sounds like as well. In the photo above you can see what 20% stretch looks like, our 5″ swatch is stretched to 6″ without over stretching.

Additionally 20% stretch is a guide, we found that this number resulted in consistently successful cardigans, which is why we recommend it. With the Lark, going below 20% stretch results in a perfectly wearable, though more rigid top. With the Driftless, since it’s much less structured and is drafted with more drape, you’ll end up with a cardigan that doesn’t quite hang properly. The rigidity of a fabric with less than 20% stretch doesn’t work very well in this situation, whereas a fabric that has more than 20% stretch will end up having more drape and will work much better with the drafting of the pattern. Experimentation is always a good way to figure out what you like and what works for you style wise. You’ll be able to catalog that information for later projects building on what you learned by experimenting with different fiber contents and stretch percentages.

Lark Sew-Along: Working with Knits

Another question we get a lot of is “Can I make this pattern if I don’t own a serger?” The answer is yes! We have guidelines for both a serger and sewing machine in our instruction booklet, but here’s the lowdown on using your machine. We recommend using a jersey needle and either reducing the pressure of your presser foot or using a walking foot. Jersey needles are different than regular needles in that they have a rounded tip which helps the needle to pierce the knit fabric without breaking any of the fibers. Reducing the pressure of the presser foot or using a walking foot will help to reduce the amount that your jersey stretches, making sure that you don’t end up with a wavy seam.

Lark Sew-Along: Working with Knits

When sewing the actual seam on your garment you’ll want to use a narrow zig zag stitch. This allows the fabric to naturally stretch as it was meant to without breaking the stitches. If your machine has a stretch stitch you can also use that, you’ll need to consult your machine’s manual since each machine has a different variation on that. We recommend testing your stitch out on a scrap of fabric first since different fabrics may require slight adjustments due to their fiber and stretch content.

Lark Sew-Along: Working with Knits

If you’re using a serger, you’ll of course want to make sure you’ve got good tension on all your threads. Each serger is different so you’ll want to consult your manual on that. There’s one additional thing you’ll want to double check before you start serging away on your tee though, and that’s the differential feed. This is a really important step to ensuring that you don’t have wavy seams when using a serger which I find particularly noticeable around the armholes and necklines of a garment.

On your serger there are two sets of feed dogs, a front and back set, which move independently of one another. You want the front feed dogs to travel a greater distance than the back ones which fall on the other side of the needles. This will allow the front to take up enough fabric so that the rear feed dogs don’t stretch the fabric while you serge. In the photo above you can see the effects of setting the differential feed too low for a knit fabric from left to right, with the right fabric having the correct setting for the fabric. You’ll want to test this out on a scrap before you start as well since the amount of stretch will affect the setting.

Hope you found that helpful!

2 Comments Posted in Driftless Cardigan
Driftless Cardigan

Styling & Swatches: Cardigan

Hey! We are all about the new Driftless Cardigan over here. I for one can’t wait to make some! Here are the fabrics I am lusting after…

Grainline Studio | Driftless Cardigan

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Gray is always a classic choice and it goes with everything. That’s usually my go to, but this time around I am really excited to make a striped version. It will be so cute to wear at the lake this summer!

Grainline Studio | Driftless CardiganI am loving the way these Cardigans are styled. I can’t wait to wear mine with shorts! All images are taken from our Driftless inspiration Pinterest board.

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Driftless Cardigan

New Pattern Release… The Driftless Cardigan!

Driftless Cardigan | Grainline Studio

Cardigans are an essential piece of any transitional weather wardrobe. We have been cooking up a super cute one that we are elated to share with you today. Meet the Driftless Cardigan!

Grainline Studio | Driftless Cardigan

It’s the perfect cardigan for cooler temperatures throughout the year. Wear it when temperatures drop on a summer night or when it’s crisp in the autumn. It’s been mild the past few days in Chicago so we got to take ours for a spin around the city minus our jackets which was glorious.

driftless pockets

The Driftless Cardigan has the perfect amount of drape and generous front pockets that are anchored to prevent them from flipping out while you walk. The drop shoulders are great for layering while the slim sleeves keep the silhouette from becoming overwhelming.

Driftless Cardigans | Grainline Studio

The Driftless looks great buttoned or unbuttoned depending on the amount of structure you’re looking for. It also has two hem options, a classic straight band or a more contemporary split band.

Grainline Studio | Driftless Cardigan

We’re so excited about this new pattern, I’ve been wearing them nonstop, in all iterations, since the first sample was completed. We hope you enjoy the Driftless Cardigan as much as we do!


28 Comments Posted in Driftless Cardigan
Sew & Tell

Sew & Tell | Teresa of dandeliondrift

Grainline Studio | Cascade Duffle Coat

It’s just a few weeks until it’s officially spring! Although, up here in Chicago we can count on cold days for a few more months. We are really over this dreary weather! This Cascade Duffle that Teresa made is warm, cozy and fun. We love the pop of color, and it’s perfect for colder spring days.

Name Teresa

Where can we find you online? dandeliondrift

Link to your post about this project dandeliondrift 

Which pattern did you use? Cascade Duffle

Grainline Studio | Cascade Duffle Coat

What type of fabric or other materials did you use? The outer fabric is twill from JoAnn and the lining is bemberg rayon (also from JoAnn). I had little time to shop, so it was nice to find the fabric close to home!

Grainline Studio | Cascade Duffle

Tell us about your project! 

I had never even dreamed of sewing myself a coat before the Cascade Duffle (I live in Florida and rarely need a coat). I was pretty nervous that this would be a hard sew, but it actually wasn’t that difficult….time consuming, but not difficult!

I made a few changes to the pattern (nothing to change the fit, just cosmetic changes). I liked the look of the patch pockets with the flap closures, but wanted to be able to easily slip my hands into the pockets from the sides. I made welt pockets right on the pocket placement line for the patch pockets (I used this tutorial. The welt pockets are lined in bemberg rayon, and go the distance from the pocket line, all the way over to the middle of the coat. I tacked down the lining at each corner of the welt pocket so that the pocket bags wouldn’t bunch up.

I also looked through some pictures of duffle coats for inspiration and saw a picture of a coat with a great interior zipper pocket. I added that pocket to the facing piece, two inches in from the inside seam. I wasn’t sure where to place this zipper, so I saved that step towards the end until I could try the lining on and find the best placement. The zipper is a nine inch zipper, and the pocket lining for this one is nani iro double gauze. I tacked down the corners of the pocket to ensure it wouldn’t bunch up inside the lining.

The last little change I made was to add a flat piping right along the seam between the lining and the facing.

The cascade came together really well! My favorite part of sewing it had to be the bagged lining (I had never done one of those before and it came together magically)!

I wore my coat for the first time this past month and it was great! It actually was snowing (I was visiting Tennessee) and it was the perfect size to fit over my sweater and it kept me perfectly warm!

Grainline Studio | Cascade Duffle

4 Comments Posted in Sew & Tell
Tips & Tricks

Thread Chains

Thread Chains | Grainline Studio

We were just talking about our love of thread chains in the studio in relation to a new pattern we’re about to release and we started wondering, do you guys use thread chains? They’re great for keeping two layers of fabric together when you still need to allow for movement such as a main fabric and a lining.


We produced this little video as part of the Cascade sew along but thought it would be fun to post it on it’s own since this technique has so many applications. Do you guys use thread chains?

26 Comments Posted in Tips & Tricks