Hibernis Cowl Shirt Review

by | Jan 16, 2017 | Boys, Clothing, Girls | 1 comment

Originally posted Friday, November 4, 2016

When the Hibernis Cowl Shirt by Sofilantjes was released at the beginning of this year, I bought it-despite the fact that I hadn’t sewn up any of the patterns I bought during Black Friday sales.  (I blame the Broken Sewing Machine, pattern tests, and house selling…)  I bought it because I thought the pockets were so unique and interesting, I liked the princess seam blocking, and I wanted another cowl pattern to compare to the cowl of the Autumn Grace pattern I tested.  And also because the designer ran a contest with the chance of willing back the money I spend purchasing the pattern.  All I had to do was sew it up and post it in the designer’s Facebook group.  I did not win the contest but it totally motivated me to print out the pattern and sew up some shirts.

Since then, I have sewn this pattern or used it as a base for a project 7 times!

First I made a shirt for each of my girls for that contest.  One is a straight size 18 month and one is a blend of two sizes.  Now I can’t remember which ones…4 width and 5 height.  I wanted to see how well the fit of the shirt is when blended.  I blended within the sleeve cap so I ended up with the height of a 5 but the width of a 4 and then followed the sleeve down tot he length of a 5.  It worked well!

I was really happy with both of the shirts I made and my girls wore them all winter willingly, even choosing to wear them.  (This is big for my picky girls).  I really felt like the fit was really good.  Not baggy or too tight.  I like the look of the bands on the bottom, but felt like it made the shirts ride up the girls all the time and we were constantly pulling the shirts down.

I also loved the unique pockets within the princess seam sides.  I did just the bigger pocket and it was a win especially for Nut-Nut.  She was always sticking her hands in those.  I also did the princess seam blocking.  The pattern is very well suited for repurposing and using up scraps because of the color blocking princess seams.  So the shirts I made are repurposed from other shirts and coordinate without matching completely. 

Next I used the pattern for the top of their Easter Dresses.  They both like the dresses, especially Nut#2.  She wore it all summer until she stained it with sidewalk chalk.  I took at picture of Nut-Nuts so you could get an idea of what they looked like.  Nut#2’s didn’t have the band around the front.

Again, the fit was good.  I used the same sizes, but didn’t do the princess seam color blocking and shortened them to waist where I added two layers of a 1/2 circle skirt. Because of stretching along the grain from the knits (and that I never hemmed it in my haste-I decided to make them the day or two before Easter) the back stretched longer than the front but it didn’t bug me too much.  Kinda like a hi-low hem.

Then I made a shirt for Nut#2 using the princess seam blocking and doing the detachable cowl.  Nut#2 liked the cowl, but more as a head scarf than as a cowl.  She wore it school, took off the cowl and had the tabs flapping all around, and then got paint all over the sleeves.  🙁 I haven’t gotten the paint out yet so I’m glad I quickly took some pictures before she left for school that day.  The cowl is cute, but it would be cuter if she left it on the shirt.

Most recently, I used this pattern for the shirts for Nut#3 and Nut-Nut’s Halloween costumes this year.  Nut-Nut’s is the plain shirt in the 18 month size (that size is getting a bit snug, but for pajamas I thought it would be okay) with some details sewn directly onto the shirt to make it more like the Pokemon Purrloin and 3 inches added to the hems.  I like our shirts long (to cover bellies and allow for growth).  Nut#3’s is a 3T width with 5T length adjusted at the neckline to be more like a crew neckline than a scoop neckline.  The pattern is meant for girls, and while that doesn’t really matter too much at this age, I felt like a crew neck would be more appropriate for my son.  I brought the neck up about .5-.75 inches and in at the shoulders around .5 inches.  It looks pretty consistent with how Nut-Nut’s looks now so perhaps there is a small inconsistency in the grading between sizes.

Overall, I really like this pattern and it is becoming a go-to pattern for me!  It probably has flaws, but the seams match up really well especially at the neckline and at the princess seams.  It’s really easy to see how the pieces go together.

Here’s a cool bonus to the pattern instructions-the very end has the instructions in just graphics.  So if you’re really comfortable sewing or just sewing this pattern, you can just look at one page for the order of sewing stuff together instead of scrolling through all the instructions.  I see this coming in really handy as a quick reference.

Pattern Specifications: Hibernis Cowl Shirt -Sofilantjes

Pattern sizing: 12 mo.-14 years.  I made a rage of 18 mo, 4 width and 5 height, 3 width 5 height

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern when you were finished sewing? Yes

Were the instructions complete and easy to follow? Yes

Fabric used: Cotton lyra knit, cotton interlock knit

Did you alter the pattern in any way? Lengthened and left off waistbands and cuff for Halloween Costumes, Shortened for making dresses

Was there anything you disliked or would change? No

Would you sew it again? Absolutely

Would you recommend it to others? Yes

Do you consider the pattern beginner/intermediate/advanced? Beginner

Shirts/dresses: Were the sleeves cut on the on the fold? yes

Pants: Do the front and back have separate rises? N/A

Does the pattern include layers for easy printing? Yes

Seam allowance used in the pattern 3/8″

Is the pattern cut or no cut pages? Trimless