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Freedom Wrap a versatile garment

| Sunday, May 13, 2001

Lyla J. Messinger of L.J. Designs designed the Freedom Wrap for ease and comfort. It has become a very popular pattern and is two-piece dressing at its best. The garments look great on all shapes and sizes because of the vertical lines created in the drape.

The Freedom Wrap was given its name because of its versatility. The wrap has a loose flowing top. It can be worn to give the appearance of a loose blouse with a matching jacket by allowing the fabric to hang freely and softly drape over the body.

When the front flap is tucked into the top of the pants it creates the illusion of a jumpsuit. For a dressy effect you can pull the bottom corner of the front flap across the front to the upper chest and secure with a beautiful pin or brooch. Lightweight fabrics like the soft challis I used will also allow me to pull the long front flaps forward and tie it in the front at the waist. If the fabric is reversible the front flap can flip to the back for a cape or a full shawl collar jacket look.


Soft drapable fabrics such as rayon challis, sand washed silks, wool jersey and microfibers are recommended in either a solid, print or an unusual designed pattern. If you use fabric, which is at least 50 inches wide, the two pieces of the garment will eliminate around 6 yards of fabric from your stash. The wrap has only three pattern pieces requiring 4 yards of the fabric. It is easy to cut out since the front and back panels are laid on the fold of the fabric with a {5/8}-inch seam allowance.

Front and back panels are sewn together at the shoulder seams using straight fusible stay tape. Stay tape is used to reinforce the shoulder seams because of the weight of the fabric created by the long panels.

One side of the inner shoulder seam is left open about an inch or so and the neckline is finished while the panels are lying flat. The completed shoulder seam allowance is serged together as ¼ inch of the seam allowance is trimmed off. It is then pressed toward the front of the garment and topstitched ¼ inch from the seam line.

Fusible bias stay tape is placed on the inner neckline, serged and trimmed before turning the neckline to the inside. The neckline is then fused and topstitched in place. The remaining shoulder seam is sewn closed, serged and topstitched as instructed above.

Sew the sleeves to the main body panel matching the notches. Serge the seam allowance together trimming ¼ inch off of the seam allowance then press and topstitch toward the body of the garment.

Serge the edges of the sleeves, turn the serged edge back and topstitch in place to finish off the sleeves. The side seams are then sewn together and the seam allowance is serged together trimming ¼ inch off of the seam allowance. The finished seam allowance is pressed toward the front of the garment.

The outer edges of the garment may be finished off using the same method as was used on the sleeves.

The pants pattern included with the Freedom Wrap is full at the top with an elastic waistband, and tapered at the ankle for a flattering and sliming "harem" look. I added pockets in the side seams of mine.

Lyla J. Messinger, the owner of L.J. Designs, is an international teacher and designer. She holds a bachelor's degree in home economics education and a master's degree in clothing and textiles. The Freedom Wrap pattern may be purchased online at www.sewnet.com/ljdesigns or by writing her at P.O. Box 21116, Reno, NV. 89515-1116 or by phone at (775) 853-2207.

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