Earlier this year I wrote about my sewing plans for 2019. I also wrote about a year of Kibbe inspired sewing. This post is mostly about my first Kibbe inspired top. At the end of 2018 I bought Jalie 3677, the Helene Cardigan. I liked the lines and the subtle shaping provided by the peplum skirt section. It has very positive reviews all over the interwebs for both the silhouette and drafting quality. In terms of Kibbe, tops (cardigans or jackets) should be:
Softly tailored with curvy shaping (subdued, not fussy) that gently shows the waist. Short to moderate lengths are best, although a longer length is possible in a belted jacket or one that has a very understated peplum. They can have slight shoulder definition with crisp pads and tapered sleeves. This detail should be subdued and understated, not fussy or overdone.
Score! I bought what I thought was a wool blend double knit from Eliza’s in Sunshine. A burn test indicated it was polyester blended with another synthetic. Sigh. And it is #MelbourneBlack again. Which means I have a wearable toile for work (black cardigan/jacket is stipulated in the uniform code) and terrible photographs.
I traced off the pattern and discovered that the sleeves have a symmetrical sleeve head. This is new to me, even on a casual knit garment. I did my sleeve adjustments – added 2cm to the bicep, shortened the length and this time I tapered to a slightly wider wrist measurement. I wanted this to go easily over long sleeves.
I like the idea of a Hong Kong finish but not the hours involved. Instead I used decorative threads in the loopers of my overlocker.
This is varigated thread from Mettler. The grey is almost invisible, the blue and pink were more obvious.
Once I trialled them in the overlocker they were easier to see:
The blue won. I love blue, my eyes are blue, my favourite clothes are blue. Even my wedding dress was blue..
I attached the pockets with black thread, but now wish I’d done them in the blue too. This cardigan was constructed entirely on the overlocker and coverstitch machine.
After wearing it for a few days I noticed that the collar was quite high for me and that the fabric was too sturdy to naturally pleat down. It was making me fidget so I decided to stitch it down by hand. I also noticed that the skirt part has some hi-low shaping to it. Oh well – I can live with it in a toile.
Fabric – Polyester double knit 2 m @ $8.00 per metre $16.00
Pattern – Jalie 3677 Helene $12.75
Totals = approximately $28.75
Annoyance factor – Low, aside from the self-inflicted unpicking.
Do it again? Yes, though I might move the pockets closer to the centre front. I will also add some width to the centre front and consider buttons and remove some height from the collar at the centre back. I may also reduce the back length so that it sits on my natural waist and I might straighten the hem. I really like this cardigan and see it being worn a lot.