Sunday, December 16, 2007


When I lived in a dormitory in Oregon I had a Japanese roommate for my last year of college and she had this great hanten that her mother had made for her. Oh, I thought it was absolutely wonderful and when she wasn't in the room I'd borrow it and wear it while I studied. She finally got tired of me using her hanten and asked her mother to make one for me. I loved it and practically lived in it during the fall and winter months. I especially liked the velvet collar sewn around the neckline. So warm and cuddly! A few months later when I went off to Japan myself to work as a missionary associate I took the hanten with me and was practically inseparable from it those first freezing months of living in Northern Japan. My roommates' mother's hanten served me well for a couple more years but the Japan winters were still a hardship for me and one day when I was wearing the hanten and sitting too close to the kerosene stove I burned a large hole in it. Goodbye to my wonderful hanten!

With those memories I decided that what every girl needs is a hanten when she is away from home and earlier this month I made one for a special daughter (mine, who I'm betting won't read all the way through this post) and sent it off. I decided I'd make another one for Tetsu and to write down the basics in case I ever want to make one again. So here is a step-by-step pictorial.

Pretty simple pattern. 6 pieces in all.

Cut out all the pieces and zig-zagged around all the edges.
Lay out body pieces and mark shoulder. Mark sewing line on either side of center.

Sew center back. Cut shoulders to 3" from selvage. Hem all edges (turn under at right angle at neck).
Hem sleeve pieces to desired length..
Sew sleeves to body.
Sew side seems to sleeves and tack down seams.

Sew underarm seams on a curve to wrists. Cut away fabric.

Hem all of the hanten bottom.
Sew collar pieces together and then sew to right side of the hanten body, inserting ties. (I didn't even have enough fabric for those so I used some leftover cording from something else.)
Tack collar to underside.

Position velvet and sew around collar.

"Dekita~~!" ("It's done!")


Lazy Gal Tonya said...

warm and cozy, and most of all she'll know how much her mother loves her every time she wears it.

Kathie said...

Wow I just love this.
Love the fabric, can't believe its one piece of fabric and you didn't piece it together.
I would wear that all thru the winter too!
love the shape of it.
just looks so comfortable.

Lille meg said...

Hey! I found your blog by visiting another blog.
I like to visit bloggers from other countries.
You are clever with your quilting.
Nice to see!

Greetings from Norway.

meggie said...

Very cosy Tanya! Love the fabric.

kimiyo said...

Hi Tanya,
It's nice to see your blog! I was just looking for hanten because my husband mentioned that hanten might be a good item to sell here in US. I'm Japanese living in US (mostly in NY) for 23 years since I was 23. I have 4 kids, 1 dog and 1 bunny. I love baking, I used to do sawing a little. I just started my blog.