First on my list of maternity makes was this cosy oversized cardigan. I’d spotted it in the new September issue of Knipmode and it seemed perfect as a nice oversized maternity cardigan.
The way I drew it on my maternity capsule wardrobe I thought about wearing it zipped up or loose and possibly even with a belt. I knew from the start I wanted to make it in a sweatshirt fleece I bought at my local fabric store. It’s this creamy/off-white with tiny flecks of blue, red and yellow. Solid from a distance but enough to pair it with either of those colours. I bought it originally last Spring to make a nice spring/summer shiftdress (why yes, summer shift dress in sweatshirt fleece) and it did get made and worn a lot. It was so cosy and snuggly I’m seriously considering to replace the short sleeves for 3/4 sleeves so I can wear it again these upcoming months. Anyway, I fell in love with the fabric, wanted to make something else with it, spotted this cardigan pattern, fell in love again and paired the two seamlessly. This is starting to seam like a soppy lovestory, right?
SPOILER ALERT Not quite, but it has a happy ending, nonetheless.
Knipmode is much like Burda, they include very brief instructions and patterns without seam allowance. I hate adding seam allowance so I finally caved and ordered the Seam Allowance Guide. The SAG probably has a learning curve to it, because using it wasn’t as natural as I had hoped. But knits are forgiving, so it didn’t bother me too much.
I chose my size based on my shoulder width. At 17 weeks I’ve already increased 10cm around my waist and breasts but the rest of me is still fairly pre-pregnancy sized. So picking a sized based on my pregnancy measurements would make me swim in fabric. I went down two sizes compared to my pre-pregnancy measurments. (should have cut size 44, decided to go with size 40 based on flat pattern shoulder width.
I glanced at the instructions, got really confused, ignored them completely.
I decided to include a front zipper and while it wasn’t difficult in theory I did have to rip it out twice. Once because the seam got all wavy from stretching out, so it was Wondertape to the rescue, once because both sides were slightly off and I wanted it to be perfectly aligned. Once the zipper was in, I continued to use the rest of my Wondertape to construct the rest of the cardigan. It was brilliant on the large patch pockets (they are roomy enough to serve as a doll/babyshoes/bottle/cookie carrier) and the hem. It was the first time using it and I’m a convert. I’m never sewing zippers and pockets and hems without it anymore.
While construction was pretty straightforward, when I did a fit check before attaching the sleeves, I got a very strong mumu/ comfortable lab coat vibe. Not a good look, especially since, due to pregnancy, it made me look like a whale.
After setting in the sleeves and pressing the whole thing it felt less mumu, but still very comfortable lab coat like. It was comfy and warm for sure, I just wasn’t convinced I liked the look. I felt a lot larger and not in a glowing pregnancy way.
Sleeves still unhemmed, I left it on the dress form and went to bed, thinking it might look better in the morning. I didn’t touch it again until last night when I wanted to go outside and it was chilly and the hubby suggested I put it on. He saw the look on my face and said, “Honestly, it doesn’t look to bad, with your scarf it just looks like a comfortable and warm vest to wear for these chilly early autumn mornings and evenings.’ He liked it paired with leggings and high heels, even told me to leave it as oversized as it was. And when I looked in the mirror, I realised he was right. This was very mumu like paired with slippers and pyjamas, but looked very nice paired with leggings and high heels. So that’s how I wore it this morning when dropping off munchkin at daycare. And it solved my early morning chilliness problem, all at once 🙂
So, in the end it didn’t turn out the way I had expected, but the way I needed it to. Now, isn’t that a lovely story.
Note: It’s the first time that I’ve ever dared leaving the safety of my own house or garden. I stopped blogging because I was too scared to take pictures, but I needed to remedy that. Gillian and her #betterpicturesproject gave me the necessary push. Pictures are still far from perfect, but that’s mostly due to the fact that it was really overcast and it started pouring rain 30 seconds after I put the camera away! This is in fact the alley behind my house and since it’s a dead end street, there is usually no traffic, just pedestrians and people on bikes taking a shortcut. There used to be houses like ours, but because it was too close to the factory they tore them down and planted a forest instead. Which opens up a lot of photographic opportunities! Next time I just have to remember to smile for the camera 😉