Thursday, December 18, 2014

Magenta Wrap Cardigan

I love this color!
It's amazing the effect colors can have on one's mood. Putting on a bright sweater helps take the dreariness out of winter.

This is based on McCall's 6559, the same pattern I used here, but with even more modifications.
I originally cut it the same way as my yoga wrap, but this jersey being more stable and less drapey, it just didn't work as well. I decided it needed more structure and added bands and ties.
I still have mixed feelings about ties on a cardigan. For me, a cardigan should be easy to put on and take off, and ties tend to be fiddly. At least in this one, I don't have to thread them through any loops. Plus the fabric, a fine wool/cotton blend is lightweight enough that I can wear it all day and forget about it. If it were heavier, I would want to take it off as soon as I step inside.
I can also tie it up more tightly like a traditional ballet wrap. It would work well this way worn as a top, with nothing underneath.
My ties are just long enough to come around to the front in this case. I couldn't make them any longer than this as my fabric isn't very wide and I already had to piece them at the side seams.

This cardigan is entirely constructed on the serger. The only slightly complicated part was figuring out how to manage the transition where the band becomes a tie. Here's how I did it (I wouldn't be surprised if there was a better way): The band is folded lengthwise, then serged onto the cardigan. So this part of the serging ends where the body of the cardigan ends. The tie parts are then serged inside out, going only so far as to leave enough of an opening to turn them right side out. Finally, the opening is slip-stitched shut. Does this make any sense at all?

I left the edges of the sleeve openings at the wrists raw. I like them that way.

What are your favorite winter brights?

Friday, December 12, 2014

I Made a Raglan Sleeve Sweater Dress Too!

New Look 6298

...That's what I thought when I saw Morgan's gorgeous dress yesterday.
Her fabric is much more interesting than the one I used, but mine was perfect for the look I was going for: I had tried on a dress at COS that I really liked. I had a similar fabric, a wool blend double knit, and a pattern at home that seemed appropriate, so I knew what my next project would be. Well, it's not the same fabric of course (I so wish I could get my hands on some of COS' fabrics!), and the shape of the dress in the shop was actually quite different than this : looser, boxier, but still, the overall feel is similar to me.

New Look 6298

These pictures are an experiment. I don't want to be standing out in the cold in anything less than a coat, and all of our walls at home are covered in books and nick-nacks which would be very distracting. So I tried standing in front of/on a sheet. Looks a bit like I'm floating in space, doesn't it? Or even like a cut-out. So I'm thinking it would be better to have the sheet only as a backdrop, but have the floor show under my feet. Also, the lighting needs to be improved.
Anyway, getting back to the dress, the pattern is New Look 6298. I skipped the pockets. I love a dress with pockets but those particular ones, I wasn't sure of. I went down a size and I think it's just right that way. No fitting alterations other than adding length, and I'm really glad it fits so well over my square shoulders right out of the enveloppe. I'm sure the shoulder dart helps:

 I did have a bit of a problem with the neckline, but that was due to my fabric not having enough stretch. I had to make the band longer than the pattern piece and then, once sewn in, it wouldn't lay flat, so I ended up folding it under halfway and slipstitching in place so all that's left is a thin binding. This resulted in a slightly lowered neckline.

The nice thing about taking pictures inside is my kitty can participate. She kept attacking the sheet, trying to claw her way through it. She's the best sewing companion though, always inspecting my work, and her fur is the softest silk velvet you can imagine.