V-neck Alder top in jersey knit


It’s a beautiful cool south Florida morning! Only about 65°, and I’m actually cold in these pics 🙂

Recently I made the Grainline Studio Alder as a v-neck top, two actually, in Brussels washer linen (post here and here). After wearing them, I realized that they’re a bit large, and the v-neck is a little wider than I like. Not to worry, I washed them a few times to shrink them, and all is well.

However – I decided to draft the pattern in a smaller size (8 instead of 10) and to sew it in cotton/lycra jersey. So brave… and a great result!

Sewing notes:

  • As before, I used the self-faced left side for the right side as well, eliminating the attached button band. I re-shaped the v-neckline to be more narrow and 1″ higher and drafted new facings.
f1 2
New neckline and smaller size
  • I can pull this over my head, so I just attached the buttons through both sides, with no buttonholes. Yes, I was avoiding the angst of sewing a buttonhole in a knit fabric!
  • To add some back interest, I added 2.5″ to the width of the lower back and gathered it into the yoke.


  • The back yoke is unlined, which keeps the ‘weight’ of the fabric even from neck to hem and decreases bulk in the armhole binding.
Top: Fabric Merchants cotton/lycra jersey, Fabric.com
  • My finished center back length is 26.5″.
  • And I didn’t used pockets on the front. I did cut them out and prep them, but they didn’t look right, they were just too heavy for this knit.

I’m loving the pants I’m wearing, McCalls 7634 (first post here). A little tattoo art for Halloween!

Pants: Tattoo Tigers, Hearts, Roses jersey, Cali Fabrics

Speaking of Halloween, my cute Ashley in costume for the Halloween party she and Darrin host every year 🙂


Happy Halloween! Coco

McCalls 6559 and back to basics that work


The nice thing about culling my closet of uncomfortable and ‘not loved’ garments is, of course, the opportunity to sew something else!

McCalls 6559 is a favorite, TNT, pattern for me.

M6559 lines

Earlier this year, I extended the shoulders for a bit of coverage and sewed it in an ITY knit:

And it’s the most comfortable and appealing dress I have. (p.s., I’ve made the tied cardigan a couple times, it’s a great pattern for same). I did a separate post on this dress (here),  but here’s a link to the changes I made to the pattern for the extended shoulder.


I’m in the garden today, staying green and enjoying the windy and dry weather.


This moss green ITY is from Fabric Mart, and it’s really a nice deep green, lightened for the photos.

I like this dress so much that I’ve ordered 3 more ITY knits from Fabric Warehouse Direct, all in solids. I think prints exhaust me 🙂 A plus for the purchase (big plus) is the price: $3.99/yard, 58″ wide. I can make this dress with only 2 yards of fabric in the size 10.

Last pic:


Ciao! Coco

McCalls 7476 Cardigan – Maybe not


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:

line art

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.


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.




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…


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:

line art hoodie

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

For now, Coco

McCalls 7476 Cardi Part 2


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).


An unbuttoned look”


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.


  • 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!


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.


Bye for now – Coco