The changing of the more “extreme” seasons to the more “transitional” ones always causes me to want to refresh. And after a nice and toasty summer around here, I’m excited for it to be cardigan and jeans weather again. So, for my latest project as a Britex Blogger, I chose this great heathered gray and navy stripe cotton knit to make a lightweight cardigan to ease me into fall.
The pattern I used is the Julia Cardigan by Mouse House Creations. The collar of the Julia Cardigan is what drew me to it – it’s a flattering shawl style, which I thought would look great with the striped, drapey knit that I chose. It’s one of those designs that seems to look good on everyone!
I sewed a medium, modifying the sleeves to be more fitted by overlaying the Hey June Union St Tee then tapering to the pattern at the armpit. I like to shove my sleeves up my arms, so the pattern’s original bell-shaped sleeve wouldn’t quite work for me (tip from Kelly). I then cut the cuffs slightly shorter than my new sleeve width. I might shorten the sleeves a bit next time as well after seeing these photos (or add thumbholes? ha).
I added 1/2” strips of interfacing to the shoulder seams to stabilize and reinforce them (that’s a trick I learned from Liesl), and sewed the entire sweater with my serger.
I ran into some trouble attaching the collar. The knit is quite drapey so it was hard to know which way was “up” just by looking at the shapes. I needed a few more pattern notches to guide me, and for the notches to be shown in the pattern instruction photos themselves for reference. Once I started pinning to attach the collar, I had a bunch of extra fabric that didn’t line up with the sweater! Other bloggers haven’t mentioned this issue, so I’m not sure if it was just a matter of me trying to attach the wrong edge or if it was a drafting error (I measured the collar pieces and the medium appears to be about 7” longer than the extra small even though the sweater body doesn’t seem to have nearly that much extra length between sizes).
After some trial and error, I ended up eliminating the bottom panel piece entirely and the collar fit with just a bit of stretching. The back doesn’t sit quite as nicely as it should, but it’s totally wearable.
Lightweight knits can be tricky to sew, but this one was surprisingly easy and my serger handled it well! It’s drapey but not very stretchy, so it didn’t “grow” like stretchier knits tend to do. The fact that I chose the view with doubled up collar and the sleeves are finished with cuffs meant no hemming too, which is always a bonus.
I love the fit and style of the cardigan, and really love wearing it! As I hoped, the stripes swooped around the sweater and made this a really interesting-looking basic that I’ll reach for again and again. It’s light but warm, super soft, and the colors are great. My 6 year old daughter grabbed my scraps and wrapped them around herself into a fancy maxi skirt while I was sewing, so it has her vote of approval, too!
I definitely want to try it again to see if the collar problem persists, since I do love the fit and design. I might just go ahead and shorten the collar’s side panels to the XS cutting lines as a preemptive measure?
I’d highly recommend sewing up a shirt/top/dress with this knit to give yourself a jump on your fall wardrobe – it’s 72” wide and only $9.99/yd on sale right now which is a great bargain! I know I’ll be looking to wear this sweater as often as I can get away with.
Thanks for having me, Britex!
P.S. As you may have guessed, Britex provided me with the fabric shown here in exchange for me blogging about it. I purchased the Julia Cardigan pattern.
P.P.S. I’ve worn it in photos before, but my necklace is from here if you were wondering. My husband stalked my Pinterest board a couple years back to get it for me and I love it. 🙂