The Rad Plaid Flannel Channel

For this round of projects for the Cali & Co. blog, I wanted to do some fall separates, easy pieces I knew I could add to my daily rotation and that would get a lot of practical wear.    I decided on a top and a skirt, both Megan Nielsen patterns.  The Axel skirt pattern I’d bought as soon as it was released but hadn’t sewn yet – I love a knit pencil skirt.  I thought I would start with Version 2, which has the ties, or hip sashes, and I chose this taupe ponte de roma knit.  Topping it off with the Briar t-shirt; this is one of those patterns that everyone has made for years but didn’t really appeal to me until recently.  For the short sleeved crop top version I chose this pretty wine modal jersey.  The wine color is very rich and reminds me of a nice glass of syrah.  It’s a poly/modal (aka rayon) blend, very soft and drapey, but I find it easier to work with than a similarly thin rayon knit.  I needed another layer, so I decided I would make myself a flannel since Ron recently added some great ones to the shop.  I chose this traditional looking black and red flannel for me and this gray-red-white flannel for Tim.  I’ve been calling it the ‘buckeye flannel’ ever since I saw it online and since he’s an Ohio native it would make a good addition to his ever growing collection of me-made shirts.

The pencil skirt was quick and easy – I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the hip sashes but I think I love them.



The top was also a quick sew. I ended up leaving the sleeve and bottom edges raw after experimenting with hemming techniques, none of which I liked. When I sewed this fabric before it was using a pattern that finished the sleeves with a band, which looked fine, but I don’t like the way it looks turned under and stitched.


It’s a good thing I decided not to hem it because even for a crop top it is very short on me in the front.  No worries because my new flannel is going over it…


The red and black flannel is very soft, I love it.  The pattern is Butterick 5526. I cut the side panels on the bias – for stylistic reasons? maybe to avoid plaid matching at the princess seams? – and still was able to just barely squeeze this shirt out of 2 yards (it’s only 45” wide), except for the under collar which is the other flannel, but who’s looking?

The buckeye flannel is very heavy and cozy, like a blanket. Don’t believe me, ask Ringo! He decided to curl up in it and try to sabotage me as I was attempting to carefully match my plaids while cutting.


It is thick but easy to work with, and very warm. I’d recommend it if you live in a cold climate or enjoy winter camping, it would be a great layer. Any of the double nap flannels would work for extra warmth, really.  The pattern is the Colette Negroni, which I’ve made over a dozen times at this point.  It’s actually one of my favorite patterns to sew, because I’ve made it so many times I can enter a sort of meditative state while sewing it.


We’re both happy with our new flannels!  The only bad part of this month’s projects? That Tim is such a better model than I am.   He is the Hansel to my Zoolander, right down to our hair. It’s a walk-off! (Backyard walk-off not pictured.)


This month’s projects really represent the mix of things I like to sew – some quick, easy, instant-gratification knit serger projects mixed with some slower, more careful or tedious projects that require tailoring or fitting challenges.  I hope you enjoyed it and if you’ll excuse me I need to go buy some more flannel! Thanks for reading!


Leslie is a geologist/sewing enthusiast  living in the Bay Area with her man and two cats.  She likes to sew while watching football and hope it doesn’t end with a seam ripper and tears. She blogs here.





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2 thoughts on “The Rad Plaid Flannel Channel”

  1. Wow you’ve been busy! These are all great makes and I am totally digging your whole fall outfit. I’ve been tempted to try the crop top trend, but I’ve been wussing out. You totally rock it! It’s also good to hear the Negroni is a good pattern – I’m thinking of getting it for my husband since I’m currently on a collared shirt-making kick.

    Great post!

  2. Thanks! I was never into crops but decided the day after Thanksgiving was the day to try it, you know? The Negroni is a good pattern! I recommend it. And it’s a one-piece collar so it’s pretty easy if you’ve been doing two-piece stand collars lately.

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