Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The Jalie Cardigan - Don't you want one?

Owning an amazing fabric store sure has it's perks! It truly is a job that some folks dream about and I know why! My dream job is made so much sweeter with collaboration of all kinds. Laurel, of Laurel's Quill, along with my loving team at the store, all stay focused on what great new patterns, fabric and notions we can find for your next sewing inspirations. Lucky me, because I get to experiment and wear so many unique and expressive garments! Many of them are up around my store  and I hope you can come in soon to see them.

SAVE THE DATE!!! Come visit Laurel, Lauren, Liz and myself for a celebration of 
Stonemountain & Daughter  (36 years) and Indie Patterns! 
We will have a trunk show and lots of information on how to navigate all the new patterns available!

See you on March 20, 2017 at Noon!

Next we're trying out one of our new indie patterns from Jalie. Jalie is a mother-daughter duo who create "practical patterns for the whole family". It's just another reason why we love our Indie designers - women creating for other women. There's always a story behind each designer and how they got started in the industry.  Many of our indie designers give a little piece of themselves in each garment - you can feel their hard work, endlessly pattern testing, refitting, and modifying.  And we feel like we're part of the whole creative process when we "go indie". You can stop by my store, Stonemountain & Daughter Fabrics in Berkeley to see the whole catalog of patterns we now stock! We also have many of them up on our website and happy to mail them to you anywhere or hold them in our store for pick up!

So let's get started with Jalie! We love this Jalie Cocoon Cardigan - perfect for one of our new sweater knits (we have tons in stock right now!) and perfect for adding a touch of warmth in the store while working or just out and about!

The Cocoon Cardigan is a simple design - a drapey, loose-fitting cardigan with full length sleeve complete with a fitted cuff (stays put when you push them up).

The instructions are printed right on the pattern sheet itself, so be careful not to toss them out with the scraps. Laurel cut them out and taped them to a separate piece of paper.


Our sweater knit was a hair short of the 60" width requirement, requiring a slight shortening of the sleeve length. Laurel also made sure that the front and back pattern pieces were placed in the same direction on the knit (to ensure proper hanging on the body) which utilizes more fabric. We were left with a very skimpy strip in which to cut two of the very, very long bands.

Let's forget that I own a fabric store and could have easily cut another foot of fabric off the bolt. You are not likely to run back to the store, especially if you're 100 miles away like Laurel. Our second band is a little wonky, but do not fear - we can "patch it". Sweater knits with a pattern like this one are very forgiving and with a little magic zig zag stitch, it should work. 


 Laurel cut two swatches of the fabric, making sure that the knit ran in the same direction and carefully pinned the swatch to the holes in our band.


The machine is set on a zig-zag stitch with a moderate length and width, enough to catch both the edge of the hole and the swatch beneath it. Do sew slowly!!! Then trim the back of the swatch patch for less bulk.

The finished bands, one with patches in two places.  Can you tell the difference? When we sew the folded band onto the cardigan, we will be careful to have the two patches on the underneath side of the sweater. 


 Sew two shoulder seams, two side seams, attach the band and cuffs and voila! A new sweater! Instead of sewing the seams with a zig zag stitch, we used a serger, even to attach the band.

It was an easy make right up until Laurel tried it on - the sleeve cuffs looked skimpy and because she knows me (we've been making garments for almost four years!), they were sure to be too long, making the sweater look "baggy" on me. Granted, the Cocoon Cardigan is supposed to be full , but the sleeves just didn't look right.

 Solution: cut the sleeves off an inch and widen the cuff.

And instead of serging the cuff on, we opted to use a zig-zag stitch to attach it to the sleeve, then finish the raw edges off with our serger. Much Better!!

Now let's hear that voila!!

Can't wait to wrap myself up in this cocoon!
 For Laurel's Cocoon, she chose a double knit that she picked up a few visits ago from our upstairs designer sale fabrics.

Once we got the kinks worked out, this ardigan was easy and fast.

Don't you want one too?? Come check out our sweater knits - the lighter weight knits will be a great transition piece into Spring.

So now do you see why we picked this new pattern? Not only is it super easy to make up (now you know how!), it's adorable on! 

We hope to see you on March 20th at noon in the store!

So much love!