McCalls 7476 Cardigan – Maybe not

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OK, these two M7476 cardigans are from sewing some time ago, but I want to share. This is a McCalls ‘Learn to sew for Fun’ pattern, and it does have a lot going for it. The instructions are very much oriented to an advanced beginner sewer:

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Aside from really great and detailed instructions, it is interesting because it has an attached shawl collar, rather than one that is cut-on (with all the seam challenges).

I’ve fallen rather in love with hacci knits, as a substitute for cotton knits, so I used 2 pieces from the stash as victims.

First go, View B, no collar.

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Great stripe, and I agonized over the stripe matching. However. That turn in the front, where the curve meets the straight part of the front – it absolutely demands a button. I want it to fly open with panache and grace!

A few sewing notes here:

  • On both, I raised the front bodice by 1.5″, so that curve point would not be so low. Even for me, at 5’7″, that is a very low focal point.
  • In the following version, I likewise shortened the collar to match.

Well, not deterred and having the fabric, I made View D, which has the attached collar. I like this much more, mostly because the front button/curve are better, and here are pics.

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Well, no. Not for me. I’m sitting on some beautiful sweater knits, so I’m glad I tried this. Next? I’ll remove the snaps and buttons, gently, and donate these two cardigans.

Ciao! Coco

 

M7634 Small post…

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It is incredibly rainy here, NOAA is talking about a tropical disturbance in the making. Hmmm. Grey. I wore this top this morning to an appointment, and my doctor loved it!!

It’s a slightly modified version of M7476. I simply added 4.5″ inches to the length of view B and went with it – regular sleeves, no hood, no center embellishment:

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I love wearing this top – it’s so simple and so easy to wear.

For now, Coco

McCalls 7476 Cardi Part 2

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More fun with this pattern – As mentioned in my last post (here), I really did tweak my short cardi draft and cut out a new version in this wonderful polka dot sweatshirt fabric. I wish I had more of this! I was working with about 1 yard, and I just couldn’t wrest out the sleeves.

A look at the pattern with which I’m working:

m7476 line art

And my goal, a short buttoned cardi similar to the Ready to Sew Jamie cardi:

Jamie inspiration

I think I’m in love with lightweight sweatshirt fabric. It’s perfect for this topper. (midweight french terry would work as well).

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An unbuttoned look”

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A few notes:

  • I used a button/snap combo for closure. No, I’m not going to put buttonholes in this fabric!
  • On the right side, 5/8″ Toronto horn buttons from Wawak.

right side

Underneath, and on the left side, #4 snaps.

left side

This button and snap combo works great, because they are the same size. In my future, a search for metal snaps in colors, something other than black or nickel…

  • To hem the sleeve, I just serged the edge, turned it under 5/8″, and topstitched it. A double-fold hem would be too bulky.

sleeve

  • A note on interfacing – any knit facing or band will try to grow when it’s handled. I interface my knit facings with tricot knit fusible, which works really well. To combat stretching, I put my pattern piece on the ironing board, lay the facing/band on top and adjust it to the pattern (a little steam can help), and then apply the fusible. I want to end up with facings that fit!
  • You can also stabilize edges with strips of knit interfacing, particularly curved or angled cuts, if your fabric is shifty.

Since I’m on a short cardi kick, here’s another idea. McCalls 6803 is a great candidate for anyone who doesn’t want to draft and draft and draft…just shorten it!

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What next…well, I ordered some heathered rose jersey for a long version of M7476, and it should be here soon. I’m also toying with the idea of a knit wrap dress. I have Christine Johnson’s wrap dress pattern, and some cute jersey. Most of all, I’m looking for more polka dot sweatshirt fabric!

Parting shot:  I’m cold today – we got down to 50 degrees last night, and my house is chilly. Here’s a pic of the sweatshirt-styled topper I made last month with jersey knit and  M7634, unembellished… It feels great and is on my ‘I need more’ list.

cold-side

Bye for now – Coco

McCalls 7476 Cardigan version one

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Welcome to my very messy sewing room! It’s Sunday, and I don’t feel like dressing up or cleaning up 🙂 I’ve spent the last 3 days working on a short banded cardigan, one I can use for knit remnants in my stash. I always destroy my loft when I’m drafting something…

This idea really came out of nowhere. I recently ordered M7476, because I love the long version and all the options:

M7476_a

While researching examples online, I came across this adorable Jamie cardigan from Ready to Sew!

Jamie inspiration

Bingo – I was soon working on a similar draft, with M7476 View B as my starting point.

m7476 line art

Before I go any further, a note on my fabric choice. It’s a rayon/lycra knit from Cali Fabrics (still available as I write, Gypsy Floral). It’s very unstructured, stretchy, and drapey, not my favorite choice for a banded and buttoned cardigan. But it was ideal for working with my draft pattern.

Closeup 4

Drafting notes:

  • The front band on M7476 angles down to one button at the waistline. I moved that angle up 5″, to accommodate a button band similar to that on the Jamie pattern. I had to futz around a bit, redraw the curved neckline, and draft a new front facing.
  • I shortened the bodice to finish at 19″, measured at center back. I marked the back first, and then transferred the new hem to the front as well.
  • And I cut a 4 1/4″ x 40″ band to be attached at the bottom. Folded and serged to the bodice, it finishes at 1 1/2″ wide.
  • And that’s all! The sleeve length is perfect for me, which doesn’t happen very often. On this version I didn’t add a cuff to the sleeve, but it will be easy to do. And I didn’t bother with buttons or snaps.

Best seen on the inside, that lovely dropped shoulder, band, and facings:

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I have a few tweaks to make to the pattern, and then I’m trying it with some left-over sweatshirt fabric (pic is from my hoodie, in progress for fall).

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Having a great time! Coco

p.s. I’m still thinking of buying the Jamie pattern (here). The Ready to Sew site (in French and English) has a great vibe, interesting patterns, lots of information and sewn examples of their patterns, and a wonderful blog (here).

 

 

 

McCalls 6559 Spring floral

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Spring is definitely here! All the palms and trees are blooming (pollen season), and the birds appear to be having lots of fun 🙂 In the same spirit, I picked up this pretty ITY from Fabric Mart for a spring dress. OK, another spring dress!

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I don’t sew or wear a lot of blue. In my closet I have a cobalt jacket and my recent pink/blue tropical dress. However, I’m coming around to the notion that some blues are really pretty with white hair.

Note: I’m working with my camera and Gimp software to learn how to remove color casts, such as yellow, from my pics. My hair is so white, I think it’s impacting all the hues in my photos. I’ll get there!

I love this dress pattern, especially with the extended shoulder that I added this spring.

M6559 lines-side

That little bit of extra coverage on my upper arm makes a big difference to me.

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Sewing notes:

  • ITY is stretchy! I staystitched the neckline, front and back, and used strips of tricot knit fusible on the shoulders, to tame it.

strips and neckline

  • I used self-fabric binding on the neckline, 1 1/2″ wide strips cut across the horizontal of the fabric.

binding

finished binding

  • And to prevent irritation from the shoulder seam, I pressed it to the back and topstitched it. Now it’s really stable!

finished shoulder

  • All of the detail sewing – shoulders, sleeves, neckline – was done on the sewing machine. But I simply serged the long seams. That felt really good…

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About ITY knit: I love the vibrance of color on this fabric. It doesn’t fade, and it takes a lot of wear. Also, although it may seem unnecessary, it benefits from lots of pressing during the sewing process. Actually, I press every seam or detail that I sew, over and over again, to sink the threads and allow the fabric to recover. Speaking of which, ITY will drop – I always hang an ITY garment for a day or so before I hem it, whether it’s a dress, top, or pants. The best thing – you can just fold it up on the shelf or in a drawer or in a suitcase. It doesn’t wrinkle!

Parting shot: I think buying stuff from Wawak is more fun than buying makeup and nail polish!

Yes, there’s a red jacket in my future, and what a find – a 6″ metal ruler. All the markings on my plastic one are long gone, but I find a 6″ ruler to be indispensable when I’m sewing. Also, check out those buttons. They’re 5/8″ Toronto horn buttons, and they fit perfectly over a #4 snap on fleece jackets. A nice button can be hard to find, and Wawak has a great selection.

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Ciao! Coco