Hi, I’m Gracie from @sew.like.honey. I like to take pattern making classes at NYC’s FIT, and I love digging into construction details & altering patterns to fit my body. In this post, I’ll show you how to alter the Heather Blazer pattern to create a cropped blazer. This tutorial covers how to shorten the pieces, but you use the same sewing process to make a longer blazer like Chelsea’s.
First, measure how long you want the blazer to be. I wanted my blazer to hit just below my waist. I measured from my high point shoulder (HPS) (the point where a crew neck stops at the neck), across my bust, and to my waist. For me, this was 18”.
Now we’ll alter 5 pattern pieces for the body & lining: Main front piece A, Main back piece B, Front facing C, Side front lining H, and Back lining I. I use tracing paper (#TeamTrace!!) with weights to hold the paper in place. Weights can be anything sturdy: for me thrifted cups & saucers 🫖
First, Main front piece, “A”. Trace the entire piece in your size; we’re going to slash the pattern to shorten it. First, mark the final hem by measuring from the tip of the neck to the length you measured, running parallel to the grainline. I drew a “final hemline” 2 inches below my waist line. If you want your blazer to hit at your waist or above, draw your hemline at or above your waist! Next, at the bottom of the piece, mark where the regular hemline is by drawing a line perpendicular to the grainline & horizontal across the pattern piece that’s 3/8 up from the center front bottom (the shorter part of the “L” shape the hem makes). Then, cut at the bottom hemline you just drew. We’ll now tape the “old” hemline to the “new” hemline you drew earlier (the “final hemline”), aligning the grainlines. Cut away the excess paper. Yay! You have your first adjusted piece-- that was the hardest part :)
Second, we’ll adjust Main back piece “B” using pattern piece A. Flip over your adjusted piece A and line it up at the armhole with piece B. Draw a line from A’s hem to the edge of B -- this is your shortened piece B.
Next, for the Back lining, measure the amount you cut away from the Back main piece B, and cut the same amount from the hem here.
For Side front lining “H”, lay “A” on top of tracing paper on top of the original piece H. Align A’s side notch with H’s side notch. NOTE lining piece H will have a higher armhole (by 1/2”) than the main piece A. The final side length of H is from original H’s armhole to 3/8” below the final hem on A. Mark a notch on the right side of H that’s 3/4” up from its hem. Woo one more alteration to to go!
Finally, I used side front H to shorten Front facing “C”. I measured from the shortened hem of H to the notch. Then, I drew a line that same distance from the matching notch on C to its new hem. Don’t forget to mark a notch on C that’s 3/4” up from the hem on the left side of the piece. Done!
Now you have all your adjusted pieces! You can now follow the instructions for the Heather blazer and sew normally.
I’ve made two Heather blazers and added a full bicep adjustment for the arms detailed on my blog here. I made my blue blazer reversible by blending the floral lining to the front facing with embroidery :) Both blazers are made with all thrifted/second hand materials.