Ok, first off, I am still in full-on Summer gear with my wardrobe. It’s still in the 90s where I live and I’m hoping maybe if I embrace Summer for as long as it wants to hang on, Winter will seem less long! But, I also want to be prepared for cold weather. They’re predicting epic snowfall in my county this winter and I don’t feel like my cold-weather wardrobe has been doing it’s job effectively these past two years. To be fair, after living in Hawaii for the three years prior, I was completely de-acclimated, ha!
But still, I’m determined to make some stylish warm clothes before the cold months hit this year. Starting with this fab blanket cardigan. It’s soooooo cozy, guys.
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This was one of those times the fabric sort of just told me what to make from it. I scored this thick, soft sweater knit at JoAnn on serious clearance, it ended up being $3.20 a yard! I bought all that was left and went home to look for some kind of blanket-style cardigan pattern.
I landed on the Burda Style Swingy Cardigan and the result fits my vision perfectly.
This was my first time using a BurdaStyle pdf pattern, though I’ve used paper Burda patterns in the past. There are some great things about them! I love that I can find pretty much anything I’m wanting to make on the BurdaStyle website. There are often photos of the members’ makes, which is nice. They also have so many unique and interesting details to many of their patterns.
The down side is that they do not come with seam allowances, which adds some time to the pattern prep process. I did find this post on The Last Stitch with some tool recommendations for making it easier and faster to add seam allowances. I already have a small metal seam guage, but I’ll add one of these bendy rulers to my list for next time. Added to that, the instructions are very sparse and it’s assumed you know basic to intermediate garment construction. Because of this, I wouldn’t recommend it for a beginner (though we live in the Internet age, where you can easily find sewing help when you need it!)
Let’s talk about sweater knits. I happen to know a lot of sewists are afraid of knits in general and wouldn’t touch a sweater knit with a ten foot poll. I’m here to tell you, sweater knits aren’t scary! This fabric was not hard to sew at all. I used a stretch needle (as always with knits) and with my walking foot (mine is built in, but you can buy one for any machine), it sewed up perfectly. Also, because of the high pile, it hides the stitches anyway, so mistakes won’t show at all. The only thing is, using a seam ripper is risky, you’ll likely get holes in your sweater, so sew slowly and carefully! Those are my best tips for sewing with sweater knits.
Here are some beautiful sweater knit fabric choices for you:
A few final notes. I took the sleeves and underarm seams in about an inch and half because I just prefer a slimmer sleeve. I also omitted the pockets, I didn’t want the extra bulk in the hips, but in hindsight, I think they would have been fine. Next time, maybe!
Lastly, the top I’m wearing in these photos is self drafted and I have a tutorial here for how to sew a super easy rectangle top. My jeans are from Old Navy (I’m loving their new fits and fabrics!) and my booties are thrifted, but are Nine West.