Winged Cardigan

The Cushion of Doom

My stunning stitching

I finished the damn cushion cover. It fits, more or less. It looks OK, although my piping didn’t end up being as smooth as I would’ve liked (given how many needles I broke, though, my friend can deal.) Also, home-dec sewing can kiss my a$$. Though I really do love this fabric. And I did like sewing the zipper, which is one of those ones you buy by the length off a roll and then add the stops and pull after—so I was able to sew the entire zipper in BEFORE adding the pull. Much easier that way. Although there was that terrifying moment when I wasn’t sure whether I could figure out which end the pull goes on to…

Outdoors: overexposed

To make myself feel better, I spent some time yesterday messing around with drafting. As I mentioned before, I’m in need of me-made sweaters. So, I pulled out my various sweater fabrics and considered what they wanted to be, and eventually settled on a winged cardigan vaguely inspired by this project of Lauriana’s. I say vaguely only because I didn’t actually re-read her excellent tutorial, and was sorta winging it to get the look I had in my head, which is a bit different, more of a cropped, swing-jacket feel. It’s the same basic idea as the Simplicity 2603 cardi-wrap, the main differences being the size and shape of the front drape.

For my version, I wanted a comparatively short, hip-length sweater. I angled the side-seams and the back fold out at the bottom to get a looser, swingy fit at the back and sides, as well.

Winged Cardi Front

Be warned, at least in the short length, this is not a look for those who are, ah, well-endowed. I initially brought the line of the CF drape so it was 90° to the side seam, and when I tried it on—well, can you say “whoa mama!”? Needless to say, I will not be wearing this cardi with the bulletproof bras. I trimmed a significant wedge off the top of the drape, which has toned it down to where I no longer feel like my chest is entering the room several minutes before the rest of me. I have to admit, this is such an unusual sensation for me that I kinda enjoy it—I don’t think I’ve had it since I was breastfeeding. But not really what I want for everyday.

Winged Cardi---Open

Because this is technically a topper, I didn’t want to use my knit sloper (aka the Pattern Formerly Known as Lydia), as it’s super fitted. So I used another knit bodice pattern I had lying around. I did a lot of comparing for length etc, but I intentionally left the wider shoulders and lower armscyes. And that’s probably a good thing, but I sure don’t like the look as much. Especially the low armscye. Grr. The sleeves are pretty loose and shapeless, too—again, probably a good thing in a topper, but not my favourite look.

On the plus side, while drafting this took a bit of time (mostly due to my own futzing), sewing it up was ridiculously quick. Not more than half an hour, including cutting time. The nice thing about this shorter length of drape is that it JUST barely fit on the folded fabric, so I didn’t have to cut out the two fronts separately.

Winged Cardi---Back

We are having some of our first truly summery weather the last few days, so I tried to take photos outside. Sadly, photographing white outdoors in the morning was not happening, and the trees still haven’t any leaves so there’s not much shade in my back yard. So indoor pics it is. This fabric is an interesting, nubbly knit  with what looks like tinsel knitted in, that really screams “six-year-old princess”, but it was inexpensive and the right colour, so I’m going with it.  Fortunately my children have managed to break all the plastic tiaras in the house, or I might have had to don one for the photos.

I think if I were making the sweater purely to be itself, as opposed to being something I hope to wear, I would have flared the sleeves to match the bodice and cut them off at bracelet length (the same length as the sweater when the arm is at the side). But while I’m not completely against bracelet-length sweaters, they’re not my favourite as you have to worry about what you’re layering them over, so I went with regular sleeves for this. Meh.

As with the cardi-wrap, I did not finish the collar/front opening/hem of the sweater, just ran it through the unthreaded serger to trim off irregularities. I did hem the sleeves. We’ll see how that holds up, but it seems like the best way to maintain the drape and flow of the sweater.

Not sure if I’m in love with it—but it was fun to draft up and make.

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31 Comments

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31 responses to “Winged Cardigan

  1. I love the fabric for the cushion, and I think your friend will love it. 🙂 The little cardigan turned out very cute too, though I have trouble wrapping my mind around it still being cold somewhere in the northern hemisphere. It’s been so hot and muggy here though, so that’s probably why.

    • Well, it’s nice enough here today (daytime high of 20C, around 70F), but I’m one of those people who’s always cold, so even in the summer I need sweaters if I’m going to be indoors where it’s air-conditioned. And the nights here are ALWAYS cold, maybe because we’re so close to the mountains.

  2. Wow..that’s a serious cushion…I’m very impressed. I continually put off David’s comments about recovering the couch and how that will be ‘easy’ by sneakingly changing the subject! hahahaha! Now, if I was really clever, I would manage a way whereby I got him to sew it and think that he came up with the idea 🙂

    Love the cardi! It’s awesome!!!

  3. Don’t you hate it when practicality wins? Actually that is an interesting dynamic–love it, but don’t wear it much due to the impractical (or in my case usually, the not-quite-practical) nature, or wear it because it is practical, but not your favorite item.

    Regardless, it looks good! I love the white!

    By the way, you are WAY further north than me, and still we don’t even have 70 degree weather. (I really need to stop complaining–sheesh!)

    • I think that is the story of my wardrobe…

      I should complain less, too… Especially about the weather. After all, we could be under water now like so many places…

  4. I just ordered some cushions. I feel a bit ashamed because really, I should be able to sew them myself. But I just really, really don’t want to. Does that make me a bad sewing woman? 😀

    The little cardigan is cute. Unfortunately garments like that look terrible on me, but on you it looks wonderful!

  5. Ugh to the home dec sewing. I can never convince myself to do it. Love the cardi, especially the length. I won’t be shamelessly copying you though. I look -ahem- endowed even in my regular length cardi wrap a la Simplicity 2603.

  6. I like it–but it really would be better with a tiara… 😉

  7. Your cushion looks great. I totally understand what a pain it was to make.
    Very nice cardigan! I tend to like a lot of things that scream “six year old princess” 🙂

  8. Really cute, I saw something like this and belted was really cute too, great job 🙂

  9. kbenco

    The topper looks really good on you with the slim fit clothes underneath. The dramatic flared sleeves would look terrific, but sometimes it is better to have something you will be able to wear whilst carrying out regular life. My 6 year old inner princess prefers ruffles…..

  10. The idea of upholstery sewing is so unpleasant to me!!

    And thanks for your comment. I did (mainly) follow Debbie’s tutorial and, when I went back to look at my zipper work of yesterday, I think it might actually be ok. I mean, I wish there were more overlap. But I think there’s enough to make it work with the top stitching – esp, as you said, that the top stitching really makes it all happen. The truth is, I don’t know how much is enough. So if I followed Debbies instruction, I think I should just keep on and see how it looks in the end. Of course, it will be all the more to rip out, if my perspective turns out to be wrong 🙂

  11. kbenco

    I forgot to commend you on the extremely smart cushion. I loathe doing home dec sewing, but it does look fabulous once the agony is over. I hope your friend is suitably impressed.

  12. Joy

    Really lovely cardigan. It’s pretty in white. I’ve had something similar in the works for a while (in the gears in my brain, anyway.)

  13. Ugh, home dec sewing. At least you got a lovely result, and hopefully the recipient will appreciate it!

    I am envious of your draping and drafting skills. That cardigan looks AMAZING. And very on trend too, even minus tiara. I realized today while shopping (and catching a glimpse of myself in a full-length mirror which never ends well) that I really need to stop shlubbing around in my oversized hoodies. I could do a fitted cardi….maybe…if I ever finish these dratted jeans.

  14. Huh, home dec sewing… I try to avoid that if possible. Well done though. I hope your friend appreciates the hard work you put in.

    Thanks for your link and nice comment on my tutorial. My cardigan was in fact made in a very thin knit, which helps avoid the ‘whoa mama’ effect. I really like you design although I completely understand your issues with the sleeves.

  15. ali

    As usual, another winner! Very impressed with your drafting skills and great color, so versatile for this time of year.

  16. Chest entering the room before you do? I need me one of those things….
    It’s lovely. I would get a lot of wear out of a cardi in that colour and style.

  17. I love, love, love this cardigan!

    I find it very interesting that you look so lovely in it, yet you are not sure if you are in love with it. My wardrobe is in desperate need of in-between-season items like this, but whenever I try on a cardigan or simlar item, it just does not feel quite right. You have inspired me to give it another try. 🙂

  18. You know, your unabashed bravery in jumping in and drafting a pattern just amazes. I’m still so nervous about that. Thanks for the warning about this tendency to ‘enhance the bust’. I don’t really need help with that, thanks.

    I have to make something for my daughter’s birthday party. Probably the 30’s bib overalls out of the wild 70’s print

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  21. Did you just say this is not for the well-endowed? *perks up*
    This looks fantastic on you, even if you don’t love it, and since I have a similar body shape to yours, I *must* have one of these.

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