Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Ubiquitous Sweater Refashion

For whatever reason, every Wardrobe Refashionista seems to do a sweater refashion of some kind. The most common is the crew-neck-to-cardigan refashion, although I aspire to something like what Sommerset posted about recently.

I bought this oversized red wool sweater to turn into a maternity sweater, back when I thought I'd still be pregnant right now.

It's good quality, and looked great, so considering I was going to cut it apart and adjust it anyway, I went ahead with my plan--just lopped off more than originally anticipated! I needed a new red cardigan, anyway.

Took out some under the arms and at the side seams, and sliced down the center front.

Applying tear-away stabilizer along those edges made it easier to install button holes and to stitch the fronts without distorting the shape too much.

Stabilizer is a fantastic invention--if you're not sewing with it now, go get some and play to see what's possible. It's perfect for doing appliques on tees, to prevent the fabric from shifting. You can also use it along with the scallop stitch setting on your sewing machine, if your machine has one, to do a scalloped edge or a picot edge along the hem of a garment. (Tutorial on that coming soon!)

I stitched red floral embroidered ribbon along the edges I'd cut, to allow me to add buttons and buttonholes through the ribbon on either front panel. This embroidered rib bon is from the stash and has been waiting for a home forever, but since I only had half a yard, it's been tough to find just the right project. Here at least it'll get seen!

I used the rolled hem setting on my serger to give a neat finish to the fronts--I hadn't used the machine that way previsouly and was really pleased with how easy it was to get a clean, professional finish with a little bit of a decorative aspect to it. I stitched the ribbon right on top of the serged edges, rather than wrapping them as I originally intended. This made for less bulk and allowed me to show the whole ribbon without losing any of the design to the backside of the front edge.

Fits well, super warm, and already been to the cleaners. It does need some adjustments at the underarm, but since I currently spend most of my time getting spit up upon, I'm not doing any runway shows, so I'm putting off completing that step. New sweater for me before the cold gets here--am just thrilled with that accomplishment!


Anonymous said...

I love it! How do you go about adjusting the underarm on a sweater? Did you completely take off the sleeve?

Pretty Jane said...

It largely depends on whether I have to take out a lot of bulk--in this case, I needed to take a sweater sized L down to a small/medium. I generally take out a bunch along the side seams, and when I get to the armhole, open it out, take out some of the upper arm bulk (leaving the sleeve closed past the elbow), then reattach the smaller sleeve to the smaller body all in one seam.

Hope that helps!

CraftyLissa said...

This is a great tutorial - I especially love the ribbon. I'm inspired to tackle a black turtleneck I have sitting at home. Thanks!

Rae said...

Oh totally love that!! Thanks for posting this!