A sewing blog about building a functional, cohesive handmade wardrobe, one garment at a time.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Cable Blackwood

Since making my long wool Blackwood cardigan, I've been on the hunt for another sweater knit fabric.  I was having trouble committing to one online because I couldn't feel the fabric through my computer screen.  But when I was at Joann's last month, looking for grosgrain ribbons for my girls' Nutcracker performances, I found this pretty cream-colored faux-cable knit.  It is a polyester/lycra knit, something I generally stay away from, but it felt very nice in the store aaaaand I had a coupon, so I bought 2.25 yards.  I haven't been able to find it online, but as it turns out, I can't really recommend the fabric anyway.

I made the long view again in an XL widened about 1/2" at the hem of the center fronts, tapering to nothing above the bustline.  I also widened the front and back pieces at the side seams, starting from the hem and tapering to nothing at the bottom of the armscye.  I forgot to widen the sleeves above the elbows as I did the last time, but I'm still able to fit the cardigan on over a woven button-down shirt.  I've been wearing this a lot since I finished it; so I guess I like it, although I really don't like the fabric much after all.

First of all, although the fabric felt lovely in the store, it was distinctly plasticky after washing and gave off a weird perfume-y scent while I was pressing it (using a press cloth; I'm sure this stuff would melt like crazy if given the chance).  It didn't take a press well at all, thus the wavy seams at the hem band (which I'm now wishing I had left off; I might go back, cut it off and hem it, but I'm not sure who long this garment is going to hold up).

The fuzz in my serger also had a distinctly I-used-to-be-a-soda-bottle kind of a feel to it - I couldn't clean it out of there fast enough.  And unfortunately, I've already developed a hole on the side of the cardigan; I think the culprit is the rivets that I didn't get installed completely flush on my second pair of Ginger jeans.  Sweater knits are one fabric that I feel you really have to be able to handle before buying; I wish there were a better/larger selection available in stores locally.

It's too bad that I feel like the fabric is going to fall apart after one season of wear, because I really do like how it looks, and it was lovely to have around during our arctic cold snap of early January.  I even braved the single-digit temperatures to get these wintry pictures after a minor snowfall.

My photographer is only eight; she didn't think to tell me that the fabric was caught up on my behind, but I think she did a pretty good job in any case.

As always, thanks for reading, and I'll see you next time!


  1. I have this exact fabric waiting to be made into a cardigan as well. What surprised me when I got home with it was just how thin it was. I ended up buying some t-shirt weight knit to use as an underlining but I'm not sure any of it will be worth the time and effort of creating something that I won't get much wear out of!

    1. Maybe underlining it will help it wear better? If I'd done do with mine it wouldn't have holes in it.

  2. Oh yes, when fabrics don't live up to our hopes. It happens. I'm sorry, because I love the cream color and the cables on this fabric! Also, I was chuckling at your photographer's lack of feedback - I get my husband to photograph me and half the time I'm like, why didn't you tell me my bra strap was hanging out? FACEPALM.

  3. The fabric looks so pretty from here! It’s too bad it’s self destructing! I love how it looks over your button down shirt. Inder’s comment made me laugh since my husband is my photographer and he never thinks to tell me that my clothes are hung up on my backside. And they always seem to be! We almost always have to re-do the shots of my back.

  4. I think she took great photos!
    Now you know you love it, invest in some quality knit, maybe Merino?

  5. OH yes, the joys of nasty fabrics... Why are sweater knits are so difficult to find! And the only stuff available is like you say, looks like it was a bottle only yesterday! Grrr! But hey, we can't feel it through the screen, and it looks nice!


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