It´s not a big secret that I like Lisa. I like her as a person, her lifestyle and I´m a big fan of her patterns. I´ve made the Jade skirt, the Jasper sweater and now her Opal Cardigan. I want to make her Zircon sweater/dress so badly, but since it doesn´t (really) agree with pregnancy or breastfeeding, I´m putting on hold for next year.
Back to the Opal Cardigan. When Lisa asked for testers, I was bummed because being pregnant I wasn´t the right woman for the job. So when she asked for reviewers* afterwards, I jumped at the chance because a buttonless cardigan is wearable whatever state you are in 🙂
When I saw it, I was delighted because I´ve been pinning long cardigans since the end of Summer.
The Opal Cardigan has a relaxed fit with dropped shoulders, no closures but with pockets. You can choose between 3 different hem lengths, 2 sleeve lengths and 2 pockets options.
Obviously I decided to go with view C, the longest cardigan in the pattern. I really like the fact that you can just cut view C and fold up the bottom if you want to make view A or B.
I managed to cut everything out of a 1,30m remnant and even lined up all the stripes. It required some pattern piece tetris and single layer cutting but I managed (I had a second remnant if I needed it, but I´m glad I can still use it for something else). Lisa does mention that her fabric requirements are for the largest/longest size so you might want to try out your pattern layout before buying fabric. It all depends on size and fabric width (and pattern matching)
- As you can see, the only difference between my inspiration cardigans and the Opal cardigan is the neckline. So because it´s my cardigan and I can do what I want to, I changed the scoop neck into a V-neck (left photo). I just drew a line from the shoulder to notch A on the front, which resulted in a nice deep V (belly button deep). I used the width of 2 stripes for the neckbands (only a touch narrower than the pattern piece) and I chose for the black stripe to be visible so it matched the cuffs.
- To accomodate the new neckline, I extended the front bands to the centre back (bottom right) and used appr. 2x 120cm which I carefully pinned and stretched along the front edge.
- I forgot to check sleeve length mid construction, but I prefer long sleeves with a narrow cuff anyway so that was a accidental winner. I made the cuffs narrower by running it through my serger and trying it on until I was satisfied with the width. If I have to guess, I think I took off about 3cm but that´s mostly because ribbing is very stretchy. (top right photo)
- I didn´t reinforce the pockets with elastic or jersey, so time will tell if it holds up. I used washaway wondertape to temporarily ´baste´ the pockets to the front but the adhesive didn´t last through the night and had to pin anyway. I used eextra zigzag stitches at the pocket top (black stripe) to reinforce them. (second right)
- I´m really happy that my hem starts out with a black stripe at centre front because it matches the front bands! (third right)
- Because the wondertape let me down, my pockets look a bit wonky, especially the bottom but it´s hardly noticable because of my awesome stripe matching 😉
I really like it, the V-neck made it into my perfect cardigan and I can comfortably wear a denim shirt underneath. It is a wardrobe basic, one I definitely lacked but I understand that if you already have a cardigan pattern you like, you might not buy this one. That being said, as always, Lisa´s drafting and instructions are impeccable and as promised this is a very quick make. The only thing that took some patience were the pockets, because of the stripe matching. They´re in no way difficult, it´s just that one thing you cannot run through the serger like the rest. The shoulders have the perfect amount of ´drop´ for my taste and the sweater isn´t overly large. All depends on fabric choice though, I made this out of a light/medium weight sweater knit and it´s perfect. Thicker sweater knits will definitely result in a bulkier cardigan.
To celebrate the launch of the Opal Cardigan you can get it now on sale, at 15% discount until Sunday the 14th (Valentine´s present!). On top of that Gorgeous Fabrics is having a special discount on all (full-priced) sweater knits. Use discount code PAPRIKA20 to get 20% off (valid until March 15th)
- Sleeker look – made size B instead of recommended size C (SA = serger width instead of 1 cm)
- neckline = scoop neck to v-neck (shoulders to notch A)
- bands = center back to hem (+/- 120 cm)
- matched pockets to closest stripe
- narrower cuffs (4x serger)
- Medium weight sweater knit – black/grey stripes (remnant 1,30 m – stash) Black ribbing for cuffs (stash)
*Disclaimer: I received this pattern for free in exchange for a review. All opinions and views are my own!
** As promised: Blurry, indoor pictures BUT infinitely better than no pictures at all and I even quite like them 😉