January 17, 2015

The intermezzo thing

Because I've learned to be afraid of bias-issues with full skirts (some even stretch out again after the first time the garment was washed), I decided to finish E's cardigan first. I had time to go to the market on Friday morning and luckily, the market stall I usually go to for notion had exactly the kind of zipper I wanted. Which was basically the same as the one I already had, separating zipper, black tape, 'blackened' brass teeth, just 10 cm longer. And the new one even has a more fancy pull.

So, now I could finish the cardigan: Inserting the zipper, applying the rest of the bottom band and hand-stitching the facing in place.
I was pleased with the outcome, but of course, I didn't really know anything until E had tried it on. 

I made this thing based on the standard knit sloper from Winifred Aldrich's Metric Pattern Cutting for Menswear. I made that for him a while ago and both the t-shirt I made from it were a bit on the wide side (although in one case, the fabric was very thin and had little recovery and the other case included a failed attempt at raglan sleeves. Don't ask me why, because I can make those properly). Which was why I thought it might work well for a cardigan. I just made a long sleeve pattern piece and cut the front in two halves with seam allowance at center front, rather than on the fold.
I kept sleeves and body a little bit shorter to allow for the bands (I cut 4 cm off the body pieces and added a 7 cm band) but because this fabric has no vertical stretch whatsoever, both could have done with a bit more length. Fortunately, the cardigan is still quite wearable. 

I used rib knit for the collar, cuffs, bottom band and pocket edges. This is the synthetic stuff that is used most for this purpose and it's interesting. Very stretchy, obviously but it can be 'set' by heat and/or steam. This was quite useful for the pocket edges, which were distorting the whole fronts of the cardigan before I pressed them.

For a first try at a garment like this (for him, that is), I think E's new cardigan is quite successful. He rarely gets cold so the demand for items like this in his wardrobe is very limited. I may still make him more though. A more loosely fitted and longer one which can be worn over a shirt for example, or a sweater using the same basic shape. But I want to see him really wear this thing first.

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