Tamarack Jacket

HelenHelen's Makes38 Comments

Tamarack Jacket

It is so satisfying to complete a project that has been in your sewing queue for too long, isn’t it? I loved the Grainline Studio Tamarack Jacket from the moment it was released in 2017. The simple shape and cozy style made me excited to try quilting! This is my first quilting project EVER and I really enjoyed it.

I had planned to make my Tamarack in a neutral fabric so that it would pair easily with my wardrobe. The intention was to make the outside solid black and the inside lining in the triangle print,  but when I cut it out and saw the pieces, I couldn’t resist putting the lining on the outside! I love how striking it looks and I am so happy I went big on this project. I also lengthened the design and exaggerated the side split and high-low hem. 

The triangle print is gorgeous yarn-dyed cotton from Maiwa Supply (a local sustainable fiber arts supply store). The black fabric is a linen and viscose slub from Blackbird Fabrics. I wish I could say the black sleeves were intentional, but I simply ran out of fabric! I think it was a blessing in disguise because it breaks up the bold print and gave me an opportunity to make these fun, oversized elbow patches. I also added a strip of the triangle print to the inside of the sleeve, so that it shows when the sleeve is rolled up. Sew cute!

I lengthened this design to suit my body and the proportions I wanted for this look.  When lengthening, I decided to exaggerate the side split and high-low hem as well. I would love to make a short Tamarack in the future too, this design has me really excited to make more quilted pieces. 

You may have noticed that I changed the pocket design. This was actually a recommendation from my fellow podcast host, Caroline! She made the Tamarack jacket and mentioned that the welt pockets were challenging with the quilting batting. She said she would opt for patch pockets if she could go back, so I took her advice! I am really glad I did. I love the look of patch pockets, and it also means there isn’t a pocket bag on the inside of my jacket. I was able to pattern match, so the pockets are almost invisible!

I had planned to add snaps to close my Tamarack but I chickened out at the last moment and went for hook and eye closures. They are actually really ideal for this style of jacket and they are easy to remove if I ever do decide to go for the snaps (I wasn’t ready to punch holes in my precious new jacket). I added four hook and eye closures and often only close 1 or 2 to keep the cold out. Wearing this jacket is the equivalent of getting to stay in bed all day. It is like cozying up with the perfect blanket on a cold winter night. I have been wearing it nearly every day since I finished it and I know it will serve me for many months of the year in the Vancouver climate.

You can probably tell from these pics that I am so happy with this make. I is my favourite thing I have made in a long time, and It really got my sew-jo going. Are you thinking of making a Tamarack Jacket? DO IT! 🙂


About the author


Helen Wilkinson is the designer and founder of Helen's Closet Patterns. She also co-hosts the Love to Sew Podcast! Helen is obsessed with all things sewing and strives to share her passion and knowledge with the sewing community.

38 Comments on “Tamarack Jacket”

  1. I have wanted to make a Tamarack for a long time but am not sure I would actually wear it in Southern California.. maybe someday. I love the added length and the triangle fabric. I bought the Haori jacket pattern and have been looking for fabric. I think one of the red block prints from Maiwa supply maybe just what I was looking for.

    1. Hi Elizabeth, I live in SoCal too and I wear mine *all the time*. If you use a lightweight cotton batting for the quilting, it’s the perfect weight for evenings (60-65) degrees. I wear it a lot to work since it’s not too warm and it sometimes gets chilly in our air conditioned building. Hope you make it — would love to spot another Tamarack “out in the wild” 😉

  2. Your jacket is amazing Helen. The hacks you made are exactly what I would do if I were going to take on the Tamarack. Unfortunately I live in Minnesota and right now the thought of a light jacket makes my bones shiver. I also just want to say that I just recently really discovered the Love to Sew podcast. I love both you and Caroline and I love your friendship and warmth. I am listening from the beginning to all episodes in order so I don’t miss anything. Love and Light!

    1. Thanks Katrina! Totally understandable. Maybe once the winter finally turns to Spring a Taramack will seem possible 🙂 So glad you found the show! Thanks for listening!

  3. This jacket is lovely!! It’s been in my “to make” list for ages, really hoping to get around to it soon. Have you got any advice about what sort of quilt batting to use? X

    1. Great Question! I went with a quality cotton quilt batting from my local shop. It was kinda pricey, but I really wanted it to be cozy and breatheable. I don’t have a lot of experience working with batting, but this was thin enough that it was easy to work with. I got a twin size and have enough left for another jacket.

  4. I love your version, particularly the added length. I also did patch pockets on mine, and think they work great for this pattern, looking clean on the inside. I think my next one will be even simpler, one with no closures to wear indoors instead of a cardigan.

  5. Wow! Your tamarack jacket is absolutely gorgeous! I love the black sleeves, the elbow patches and the patch pockets. The material you chose is perfect! You’ve really inspired me to make one. It’s nice to have another option other than a sweater, cardi or hoodie!

  6. Love your Tamarack jacket! I made one this winter but it’s still too cold to wear it here in Ontario. Just cut out my second Blackwood Cardigan today. I really enjoy your and Caroline’s podcast!

  7. Absolutely love your jacket! I also love the blouse underneath, can you tell me the pattern please?

  8. Ooooooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. So good, Helen! Thanks for the post. I’ve been eyeballing this jacket too. I’m a few inches out of their size range, will most likely have to do an FBA — which is why I’ve been stalling. (oh, and by the way I like the pieces underneath the jacket too!
    Stay awesome, love you!

  9. That looks great! Looks so good in that print. I have the pattern with fabric to make two jackets but have been put off by the welt pockets. It will be my first jacket project and I would like to do the patch pockets instead. It would be great if you could do a post about how you did the pockets with some pics. Also I enjoy your podcast so much!

  10. Love everything about this jacket! No joke….the pocket print matching the body, the lining, the hack on the sleeves….perfect!

  11. Love this jacket could you tell me if the sizing on the pattern is correct or did you have to make a larger/smaller size.

  12. I just love your coat….. how would you rate its warmth? I am a quilter and sewist and have been considering to make one, I hate bulky jackets. I love how you made it longer and used different pockets… I think I’ll add the hood option to mine also…. I love yours it is stunning

  13. I love this jacket with the changes you made. Can I find what changes you made to the pattern, how much more you added, how you did the high low for the bottom and how tall you are? Did you add more to the

    1. Hi Erica,

      It has been a while so I’m not 100% sure how much extra I added. Maybe about 8″ to the front and 10″ to the back? You can add more than you think you’ll need and trim it after you try it on. I am 5’9.5″

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