Monday, June 13, 2016

Two more cardigans

Well, it seems my selfish-sewing-jo is really on fire.  The sewing streak I began in May has not let up, and now that I have a greater variety of clothing that fits, getting dressed is actually starting to become fun again.  Recently, I've made two more Lisbon Cardigans.


For the first one, I used a 1.5-yard cut of a J. Crew polyester jacquard stripe knit acquired last year from Fabric Mart.  I had bought it to make a slouchy t-shirt, but the lace stripes were a lot more see-through in person than I thought they would be.  So the fabric went back into the stash to await its destiny.  When I came across it in late May, inspiration struck. Sheer fabric isn't a problem if you're always going to wear it over something.  So a cardigan it had to be.


I could have sewn this up in an afternoon after the pieces were cut, but I spent a couple of days considering what to do about the button bands.  Originally I cut an interfaced band out of a different fabric, but when I went to put in buttonholes I didn't like the way the wide black band looked with the lace.  After a few days' consideration, I cut the band off (unpicking black stitches on black fabric? No thanks!) and added a thinner band of self-fabric, no interfacing, no buttons or buttonholes.  As a result, the cardigan is smaller.  I can close it at the top with a pin.  I like how it looks open when I arrange it just-so, but as you can see, the fabric is so floppy that it doesn't stay just-so.


It's a size 12, just like my first one.  This fabric is a lot less stretchy than the French terry I used last time, so it's a closer fit.  I sewed the whole thing entirely on my serger and coverstitch machine.  I did not add the sleeve bands, instead just turned up and coverstitched with a 1/2" hem.  I also lowered the neckline by about 3/4".


I recently wore the cardigan on a date night to the movies.  It is the perfect weight for the theater - I would have been cold wearing just the t-shirt, but a heavier cardigan would have been too much.  So, although it won't stay on straight without a pin, it has already gotten a lot of wear.


As the cardigan corner of my closet is still fairly empty, earlier this month, I made a green Lisbon out of this beautiful bamboo/lycra jersey knit.  There was a fluke on the Fabric Mart web site a month or two ago, where this color of the fabric was briefly (and probably accidentally) on sale for $1.80 a yard.  I bought three yards.  I would have bought more, but I felt bad, like I was cheating the company or something.  Later that day the price went back up to $11.99/yard but Fabric Mart honored my order, which was nice of them.

Anyway, I sewed up the cardigan in the 12 graded to the 14, just as I had the previous two times.  I tried it on and was ... totally disappointed.  It was way too big.  Fabric choice plays such a huge role in how knits fit, and I guess the drape of the bamboo meant that I should have cut a smaller size. 


Trouble was, not only had I serged all my bands on AND sewed the buttonholes and buttons on, but I had coverstitched the bottom band, too.  It was well and stitched together.  I was so mad.  I threw the cardigan down the basement stairs and went to bed.  I thought about starting over (after all, the fabric was less than $2 a yard), but I wanted to save the rest of the green fabric for another top down the road.  So over the course of three days, I slowly picked out my stitching and then took my side seams in 1/2" from hem to sleeve.

MUCH better.  I do wish the shoulders were narrower, but I'm not picking out any more stitches. The good thing is, now that I've sewn three of these in different knits, I should have a better idea in the future whether to cut the 12 or a smaller size, based on the fabric I am using.  And given how often I reach for these, I could easily use three or four more of them.

 

Also seen in these photos - a new Kirsten Kimono tee (size medium with my 5" FBA and hips graded to an XL) in cotton/lycra from Fabric Mart.  I wore this outfit to church last week and felt cute.  It was a good day :) 

I'm including the next photo (taken by my 3-year-old son) because it is the truest to the color of the fabric.


I'm currently trying to decide what color fabrics to order for my next few Lisbons.  I'm thinking a deep peacock blue, and maybe a yellow if I can find the right shade.  I love this pattern!

13 comments:

  1. those are both pretty cute cardigans. I LOVED the last picture!! I thought it was meant to be arty until I read your description! :D

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    1. LOL, thanks. I guess my toddler has an eye for photos ;)

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  2. I really love the green cardi, that was nice of fabric mart to honor the price!!

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    1. Just another reason that I love them!

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  3. Oh, man, that sounds like a LOT of work, but the fit of that green cardi is practically perfect in every way now! I loooooooove it. The black one is really nice too ... you need a cute brooch for the top.

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    1. Thanks! I do have a cute brooch for the top, but since it is a little too small, it pulls a bit when I wear it. I probably should have left the wider band that I sewed on first.

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  4. Your green cardi is fantastic! I love this pattern too!

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  5. Your cardigans are great! Love the color and great use for the sheer fabric too. You look lovely. Great job!

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  6. Love these! The sheer stripes are really fun and the green is just beautiful... isn't it great to have a go-to pattern?

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  7. Super cute! They look great!

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  8. That green color is so good! It sounds like they are both going to be so useful and I love how satisfying that is! Right?

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  9. That green is stunning on you.
    Keep up that sewing, I want to see some jeans.
    xx N

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Hi! I am so happy you came by. Thanks for your comment!