Cardigan Refashion

Unfortunately, many of my sweaters have fallen victim to the dryer.  I try to keep them from getting put in the dryer.  But it happens.  And then I end up with a short, fat sweater.  I don’t understand why knits shrink this way.  But they do.

Cardigan Shrunk in Dryer

I love the color of the cardigan. And my fast growing children always need sweaters.  So… I’ll take the sewing pattern that I made last week and put it to use.

How to Refashion an Adult Sweater for a Child

First, carefully cut apart the sweater, removing sleeves from the bodice.  Leave the ribbing and zipper intact for now.

Take the back bodice piece and fold it in half lengthwise.  Lay your pattern piece on top of it, lining up the pattern neckline and the ribbed neck edge. Cut.  Make sure you keep the bottom ribbed edge – you’ll need it later.

Cardigan Sewing Back Bodice

Next take the front of the sweater and smooth it flat.  Line up the neckline and the ribbing again. Cut out one side.

Cardigan Refashion Front Bodice

Then flip the pattern piece and repeat.  If you have a zipper, as shown, set it aside for another project.

Cardigan Sewing Front Left

Cut out the sleeve, lining up the wrist edge of the pattern with the ribbing.

Cut off the bottom ribbed edge of the sweater.  You should now have two sleeve pieces, with cuff edge.  Two front bodice pieces, and a back bodice piece with neck edge, without bottom ribbed edge.  And pieces of ribbing.

Cardigan Sewing Pattern Pieces

Next, attach front and back bodice pieces at the shoulder.

Attach sleeve to the armscye.

With right sides together, sew from the sleeve cuff edge to the shoulder and down to the bodice hemline.

If needed for length, sew your ribbed pieces together.  Attach the ribbed edging to the bottom of the bodice.

OPTIONAL:  Sew a zigzag line across the seam where the bodice and ribbing are attached.  This will keep your ribbed edge from rolling up when wearing the cardigan.

Supporting Seam Cardigan Sweater

Serge a piece of ribbon or other edging onto your raw sweater edge.  (I had intended to sew mine so that both ribbons were on the outside – but that isn’t what happened.  So it’s a bit quirky looking.)  Then fold over and stitch in place.  If you have time, it will look better if you do it by hand.

Cotton Cardigan

Sewing Tips

  • Serge the raw seams in this project if using a true sweater knit.  
  • Use a walking foot if you sweater fabric is thick or has an uneven texture.
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2 thoughts on “Cardigan Refashion

  1. Pingback: Sweater to Skirts Refashion | christine at home

  2. Pingback: {Refashion} Baby Mint Cardigan + Birthday Visit | All Glorious

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