Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Tale of Two Cardies...

One wearable, one not.

First up, a big THANK YOU to everyone for their help and suggestions as to how I might save my wadd-ette from full wadder status. I tried most of the tips, from belt (yikes, not a good look) to pinning in waist darts as many suggested. That worked to some degree, but didn't seem to go with the 'style' of the cardigan and also seemed to just cause the front to sit open more. However, I think I have it to wearable status. It might never be a favourite, but it's made it to the wardrobe month-long trial that Belinda/Sew4Fun suggested.

I left the cardy to languish on my desk while I blobbed on the couch relaxed in front of the television until I had a revelation. Dang it - I am a lollipop shape (I'm thinking ChupaChup here, lol). It's my current body shape and, short of liposuction, I can't think of a way to change that overnight. That didn't mean I was going to settle for the octuplet pregnancy look though!

I grabbed the seam-ripper and started frogstitching (why, oh why did I get such a good match for thread?) until the overlocking/serging beat me for the night. Yep, I didn't just baste the cardy together to try it on. Nooooo, I beautifully finished every seam with 4-thread overlocking. Clever, no?

Overnight my subconscious kept working and in the morning I knew where I was going to start. I also knew that if I didn't start right away, it would probably never get done, 'cos that's just me. So, more frogstitching. My seam-ripper and I have become very good friends lately. Once I'd finished deconstructing, it was time to put it back together, but hopefully improved.

I started by digging out the pattern for the plain tee from Ottobre 02-2007 #2. I've done a FBA on this and know it fits so figured it was a good shape to start with. I overlaid the back pattern and used it to mark and trim a more shaped back for the cardigan. I did allow about 5mm on the side seam for a bit more ease as a cardy.

The tee-shirt pattern back on top of the cardigan pattern back, showing the difference in shaping and amount I trimmed -

Next, I did the same for the front, again using the pattern piece from the tee-shirt.

Next was removing some of the gathers, about half the extra fabric allowed for gathers was removed (2.7cm or approximately an inch)

I put all the pieces back together, reattached the satin ribbon binding on the front edges and went to mark button placements. Then I noticed the strange ripple on the front edge... :( A quick check showed one front edge had stretched out between all the unpicking and reattaching. Sigh, you'd have thought I'd notice the ribbon didn't have as much excess length when I was resewing wouldn't you? I can only offer the lateness of the hour as my defence. More frogstitching. Some steam above the fabric encouraged it back to shape and I started again. About now I was wondering whether I really wanted a brown cardy.

But I persevered, right through unpicking a crooked buttonhole (after that I decided the other three weren't that crooked ;) ) and sewing on buttons.

Here's the finished product. For comparison I've put the "before" photo on the left, followed by the "after" photo.

Before ----------/ After----------- / After worn open

Before-an octuplet look --------/ After - down to triplets, lol.

A close-up of the buttons

Like I said, still not perfect. For instance, I can see gathers where I added a ribbon facing to the neckline because I didn't use a bias ribbon (tut tut). I could unpick that and fix it........ Maybe I will if it lasts a month in the wardrobe. :)


Kat said...

Good for you, Keely! Yes, I think it's much improved. I really thought it could be salvaged, and I hope you get much use out of it.

Rhoto said...

Good save!! Looks like a nice-cardigan-to-have!!
Soft hug,
Rhonda in Montreal (PR)

Debbie Cook said...

Great improvement!! We'd be great friends in real life ... I can't let go of projects either. LOL! But all of your extra effort and frogstitching was definitely worth the end result.

Sherril said...

Keely, I'm so happy you kept at it. You made it fit the way it should, not much extra but just enough ease. Yes, you do need a brown cardi in your wardrobe. Don't forget about the magic wardrobe. Time does heal some wounds. Keep it in there for a while even if you're not crazy about it now. You may love it in another month.

angie.a said...

Oh wow, totally different garment now! Fantastic save!

judy r said...

Woohoo! I knew it was worth saving! That looks soooo much better. Now, don't you feel proud of yourself for sticking at it?

Judy Ross said...

Just seeing if my comment comes up as a link..... Whatever would I do without you to walk me through the technical bits!?

Sew4Fun said...

Yay for you! Wonderful save. I really like the final result. Lots more shape and I like the buttons. I recognise that knit top fabric too. :)

Rachelle said...

Oh, great job! Yeah, the belt thing never works for me, either, but a non-frogging solution is always what I try out first. :)

I REALLY like those buttons!

Les Petits Anglais said...

Now that's what I call clever sewing! It's lovely and it'll grow on you as the frogging memories fade. Great colour on you.

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