MN2302 Hovea / Sewalongs

Tips for Making a Reversible Hovea Quilt Coat or Jacket

Tips for making Hovea Reversible | Megan Nielsen Blog

If you are torn between two fabric choices for Hovea the great news is that you can make it reversible! Making your Hovea quilt coat or jacket reversible is incredibly easy and you end up with two jackets for the price of one! This is an especially good choice if you are wanting to make a patchwork Hovea and also a whole piece Hovea. By lining your patchwork Hovea with a single fabric you can get the best of both worlds. We’ve made four reversible Hoveas here in the studio, and today i am really excited to share some great tips for making a reversible Hovea quilt coat or jacket. Lets jump in!

Make binding from the same fabric as the lining | Tips for Making Hovea ReversibleMake Internal binding out of the same fabric as the lining | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #1: Make the internal binding out of the same fabric as the lining

The first step to making those bound seams visually disappear is to make them out of the same fabric as the lining fabric you chose. Your lining fabric doesn’t need to be neutral and can be a statement! For our patchwork jacket we chose a natural linen for the lining and seams. For our Ochre whole piece jacket we used a beautiful floral print linen. For the puffer jacket sample we used a natural linen as the exterior and a statement salmon pink inside! Lastly our Sashiko jacket is a lovely mushroom linen for the lining.

Grade back seams to reduce bulk | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #2: Grade back seams to reduce bulk

Quilt coats and jackets can become bulky very quickly and grading back your seams is super important to reduce that bulk. When making your jacket reversible it’s even more important as less bulk in this seams will make them blend in to the lining better and be less visually distracting. For our samples we tested a number of different ways to grade back seams. For most samples we graded back each seam by a different amount so that they would be as flat as possible. As an additional step you can also carefully grade back the quilt batting to remove as much quilt batting from the seams as possible. This is easier if your quilting stitches aren’t too dense. For our cream and pink puffer jacket we trimmed back the entire seam allowance and removed the quilt batting from the seams.

Alternate seam directions | Tips for Making Hovea ReversibleAlternate seam directions | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #3 Alternate seam directions

This tip goes with reducing bulk and is most important with attaching your sleeves. Make sure to alternate the direction of your seams to reduce bulk in the underarm. For our samples we pressed and sewed all body seams to the back and the sleeve seams towards the front. This technique has the added benefit of locking in your seams so that they line up really cleanly.

External binding that coordinates with both fabrics | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible External binding that coordinates with both fabrics | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #4 Chose an external binding that coordinates with both fabrics

Given you will see the external binding from both sides it’s important to choose a binding which coordinates with both. However, that doesn’t mean it needs to be a contrast fabric for both! For two of our reversible quilt coats we chose to use an external binding which contrasted with both the outer of the jacket and the lining, but for the other two we chose an external binding that was the same fabric as the lining. This means that one jacket will have a contrasting hem, and the other will be more subtle. If you’re struggling to choose between contrast or matching binding this might be a good option for you!

Hand sew binding | Tips for Making Hovea ReversibleHand sew binding | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #5 hand sew down binding

Hand sewing your binding flat with a slip stitch is the best way to finish your internal seams and make them blend beautifully into your lining. I know hand sewing all your seams might sound tedious, but it’s definitely worth it in this make to make your jacket reversible, and is much less work than making two jackets! I might be a bit weird, but I love handsewing. As someone who is always on the go and struggles to relax, I feel like it forces me to sit still and slow down for a bit. If you prefer you can also make this hand sewing a feature! If you have hand stitched your quilting then you may like to use that same method on your seams to coordinate. I did that with the Sashiko sample and really love how it turned out.

Make it Reversible | Tips for Hand Quilting the Hovea Jacket

You may also like to alter the method for attaching binding to reduce binding bulk (to see our basic binding method check out this post). Instead of binding the entire seam then sewing it flat, you could sew one edge of the binding to the seam, press the seams down, then fold the remaining binding edge over the seam edge and sew down. I did this for the Sashiko sample and it worked really well.

Reversible Hovea Tie placement | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

Tip #6 Consider placement of design details like pocket & ties

As your jacket is going to be reversible it’s worth thinking about how your design details will interact with the internal lining. For views B and F the stitching required to attach your external pockets won’t show on the inside of the jacket. If you sew divisions onto your pockets these will also show on the inside of the jacket. For the view D coat, the stitching required to attach the bottom edge of your external pockets will show on the inside of your garment, so keep that in mind when planning your coat. Something we wanted to try was adding pockets to the inside and outside! Don’t forget you can also leave off your pockets entirely or use only one pocket. Ties are another detail to consider. We added our ties to the lining side of our patchwork reversible jacket as we felt it would add more visual interest to what was a very neutral side. If making your jacket reversible you may wish to leave off your hang loop as well! This is something we did on some of our jackets and forgot on the others – so don’t make my mistake ;)

Thread choice to contrast | Tips for Making Hovea Reversible

And lastly your thread choice is also something to consider. For some of our reversible jackets we chose to use the same thread in the bobbin so that one side of the jacket would be more monochrome and the other would have contrast stitching. You can also match your bobbin thread to your lining fabric and your spool thread to your outer jacket like we did for our natural linen/pink puffer jacket. This means that both sides of your jacket will have coordinating thread.

I really hope you found our tips for making Hovea reversible helpful! If you have any questions let me know in the comments! I really hope you try making a reversible Hovea – it’s so satisfying and such a fun way to turn one make into two!


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About Author

Meg is the Founder and Creative Director of Megan Nielsen Patterns, and is constantly dreaming up ideas for new sewing patterns and ways to make your sewing journey more enjoyable! She gets really excited about design details and is always trying to add way too many variations to our patterns.

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