Summiting Mt Kiabi

Yay! I finished it! Or rather, them.

It’s been a slow but fun process constructing Zero Waste Design Online’s Kiabi windbreaker (read the first post where I started this project). Last week I decided to make two separate windbreakers rather than one double-layer reversible one, and this week I finished them.

Kiabi windbreaker sketch

How much time did it take? It took about a day to get the instructions into my head, tape the pattern together and do all the cutting out. Then another solid day sewing for each windbreaker.

Both windbreakers are in nylon ripstop, bought at different times from the op shop. The orange (pronounced ORANGE!!!) fabric is crisper and more substantial than the black, which was softer and harder to sew.

I completed most of the ORANGE!!! windbreaker last week.

ORANGE!!! Kiabi windbreaker
Kiabi zero waste windbreaker in ORANGE!!!
Front and collar of the zw Kiabi windbreaker
Black Kiabi windbreaker
Uh oh! Damaged fabric from the too-hot iron
Things started off badly for the black, when I melted a hole in the front with the iron. From then on I used a cool, dry iron and a press cloth!
Pocket with zip on Kiabi windbreaker
The black windbreaker has a hidden zip pocket across the front. The ORANGE!!! one doesn’t have any pockets yet.
Black Kiabi windbreaker with hood
I added a hood to the black windbreaker, which folds up inside the collar. This has made the black one highly desirable to certain teenage family members.
UPDATE: here’s the hood tutorial.
Hood of the black Kiabi windbreaker
The hood emerges from a zip that runs around the outside of the collar. I’ll write a little tutorial for this in a separate blog post.

There’s plenty of support for making this windbreaker. Zero Waste Design Online has a forum where you can ask for help from the pattern’s writers if you get stuck. You can also share and access feedback about the pattern.

If you’re thinking of making this, here are some notes from mine…

  • If you want to make a single layer windbreaker, you’ll need to cut one layer of Units 1, 3 & 4 (Unit 2 is the second “body” that makes it reversible).
  • I didn’t need the cuffs because the sleeves were long on me; I turned a hem on the sleeve and inserted elastic. It doesn’t look quite as smart a Kiabi’s wide elastic but I’m happy with it.
  • I interfaced the collar with 1 layer of fusible interfacing (the outermost collar).
  • I made the smallest size (size C) but it would be easy to make smaller by cutting narrower side gussets.
  • I didn’t sew the zip protector at the top.
  • The side gussets have pleats but I didn’t sew them in – I just cut off the excess gusset length.
  • Sewing tip for nylon ripstop: hold the seams taut as you sew them to stop the fabric from puckering.

The Verdict: the Kiabi windbreaker is a cleverly designed pattern with some nifty details. It’s definitely not a “5-minute make” type project but it’s satisfying to make and very comfortable to wear. If you need a windbreaker in your life, I highly recommend this one.



  1. Anthea Martin on August 24, 2021 at 10:31 am

    Great blog this week.
    Both look fantastic.
    Well done and keep up your excellent creative work.

    • lizhaywood on August 24, 2021 at 10:57 am

      Thanks Anthea 🙂 I’m very happy with them (although to be honest I’m a bit over nylon ripstop!)

      • Jill Schunke on August 24, 2021 at 2:12 pm

        Well done Liz.
        I love these windbreakers; they look great!!

      • lizhaywood on August 24, 2021 at 6:19 pm

        Thanks Jill! Just right for riding the R trail 🙂

  2. Julie on August 24, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    They look fantastic! And the Orange!!!!! (not sure if I put in the right number of exclamations) one will be brilliant on the bike. Congratulations!

    • lizhaywood on August 24, 2021 at 6:18 pm

      Thank you Julie, I like the ORANGE!!! one best 🙂

  3. Barkat on August 25, 2021 at 12:10 pm

    Nice windbreaker. Good look.

    • lizhaywood on August 25, 2021 at 4:30 pm

      Thank you!

  4. donna on August 28, 2021 at 6:04 am

    Well done – both look amazing! I’m hoping one day to have the skills and patience to sew something like this – but in the mean time thanks for the inspiration and entertaining blog xx

    • lizhaywood on August 29, 2021 at 9:14 pm

      Thanks Donna – I have no doubt you will make one of these sometime 🙂

  5. Elizabeth on May 1, 2024 at 2:41 pm

    It looks like this pattern is no longer available 🙁

    • lizhaywood on May 1, 2024 at 4:59 pm

      No, I see it isn’t. That is a pity. There are a few similar zw parka/hoodie patterns in Stefanie Kroth’s book. The book is in German.

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