Nani Iro Recipe no.5
Melbourne people act like we invented layering. We really do – it can get quite tedious.
It’s this crazy weather’s fault. A typical Melbourne day (there is no typical Melbourne day) can start off sunny enough to make you want to break out the inflatable pool, and end in a freezing windstorm, complete with calls to the SES and flooding on street corners. So we prepare. We check our weather apps obsessively (my small people do it first thing after waking up – makes me so proud of their little Melbourne souls…), we never pack our woollens away, and we keep an umbrella handy. Oh, and we dress in layers. Lots of them. All in stark contrast to our Sydney sisters, who dress like they might be invited for a swim at any time (I don’t want to start a border war, but you know it’s true).
I’ve been running low on basics lately, so I made this Nani Iro Recipe No 5 – one of my favourite patterns for layering. It’s loose, boxy and roomy enough to get at least three other layers of clothing under it (I think four is my record), and still keep its shape. Or you can wear it alone – I like the silhouette with a pair of high-waisted somethings. This particular version I made in a knit and improvised on the pocket shape, just to mix it up a bit.
The pattern comes from the original Nani Iro – Pattern Book, which tragically now seems to be out of print. This was my first ever Japanese sewing book and I used it a lot, before I loaned it to someone crafty and it never came home. Luckily, the Nani Iro website has a free copy for anyone to use for their layering needs. Intriguingly, you have to hand-draw it – off an A4 printout. I’d suggest adding a couple of inches to the length if you’re hoping to wear this top on its own.
The fabric I used is a vintage interlock knit from Crossley Job Lots. I used a wide hem facing because I got a bit caught out on the length – it adds a bit of weight and structure that makes it bell out a bit – a happy accident. I also chose to add a knit neck band, rather than the flat bias neckline in the original recipe.
So in Melbourne this week we’ve had days ranging from stinking summer-hot to too cold to get out of bed. My recipe 5 has handled both extremes – the perfect top for my town.