Tutorial: The Napa Sleeve Hack
Blogger: Deanna Mackin
The Napa Sleeve Hack
When the seasons change, we’re often left wondering how to make our favorite sewing patterns appropriate for colder weather. That’s why one of the most-asked questions is “Has anyone added sleeves to Napa?” And it’s no question why; Napa is a cute and cozy romper that’s adorably on trend.
Well, you asked, and we’re answering! In today’s blog, I'm outlining a few simple steps to mash Napa with two sleeved, knit bodice patterns to create a look that’s winter ready.
When choosing patterns for the Napa sleeve hack, I wanted to select a bodice that would offer enough scoop in the back to allow for easy dressing and undressing. I also wanted patterns that provide multiple sleeve options, which is how I settled on London and Wimberley. Both patterns are available in sizes 12 months to 14 years. The London Leotard is also offered in baby sizes newborn to 4 years, and can be mashed with Baby Napa. For anyone sewing for babies who would like even more ease of dressing and quicker diaper changes, check out the previous tutorial “How to add snaps to Baby Napa."
Raspberry Creek Fabrics was my fabric shop of choice for my Napa mash-ups. They offer many different ready to ship knit fabric bases and always have the best variety of beautiful prints and luscious solids. Once you have your knit fabrics chosen, you’re ready to get started!
First, measure your child and choose the corresponding sizes, blending sizes as needed. You’ll need to print the Napa romper pants and Napa bodice front pattern pieces. Also print the London or Wimberley bodice front, back, and sleeve pattern pieces.
After the pattern pieces are cut, place the Napa bodice front pattern piece on top of the London or Wimberley bodice front piece, lining up the underarm and side seams (points shown as red X's.) Place a ruler or straight edge along the bottom edge of the Napa bodice piece. Draw a horizontal line along the entire width of the bodice (shown as the blue line).
Next add just a little bit of length to your bodice piece. Because the Napa bodice has stretchy straps, it naturally sits a little lower on the child than a full sleeved bodice. To ensure the pants will start low enough on the body, add 1/2” (1.3cm) to sizes NB-4 and 3/4” (1.9cm) to sizes 5-14. To do this, simply add this length to your Wimberley or London bodice piece, drawing another horizontal line 1/2”-3/4” (1.3-1.9cm) below your previous line (new line shown in red). This will be the new cut line for your bodice piece. Cut off the excess and repeat all steps for the bodice back piece. Note: for the bodice back piece, use the Napa front bodice piece as your guide.
Finally cut all the fabric from your new pieces and sew as directed. Follow the Napa pattern tutorial for constructing the romper pants and attaching to the bodice. Follow the London or Wimberley pattern tutorials for constructing the bodice and adding the sleeves. It is recommended to finish the garment and try on the child before hemming the pants or attaching leg cuffs. This way you can adjust your overall length to fit. When finished, don’t forget to share your gorgeous Napa mash-ups on Facebook and Instagram. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!