The event was as fabulous as everyone who was there will tell you. If you weren't there, you can be put on the list for a future event by emailing blog @ mccallpattern.com. (And I hear there are plans to take the show on the road!)
So what did I personally come away with, besides a brief history of the company, a peek into how this major pattern company operates, a fun time with some NYC area sewers, and that generous goodie bag? (Thanks, McCall!) After chatting with a staff member during the nosh part of the event, I became interested in taking another look at some of the patterns with an eye toward what might work for... you guessed it... sweater knits, of course. As you're probably aware, the McCall Pattern Company not only includes McCall's, but also Butterick, Kwik Sew, and Vogue Patterns. So much to explore!
When choosing a sewing pattern for sweater knits, first check to see that the pattern is designed for knits. Though you don't often see "sweater knits" listed as a suggested fabric, Misses' and Men's cardigan pattern, M6803, does specifically list sweater knits. I don't own the pattern, so I don't know what specific instructions are given for the buttonholes. If you decide to make this classic cardigan, and you're having trouble, be sure to check out my post on Buttonholes and Sweater Knits.
Many patterns are quite workable even though they don't list sweater knits as a suggested fabric. You'd be surprised that once you've learned to stabilize knits in the important areas -- shoulders (definitely), neck/armholes/hem (perhaps) -- you may be able to use that crazy awesome, super stretch, unstable fabric that you love after all. Check that the pattern's suggested stretch for the fabric matches the stretch of the sweater knit you plan on using. (Please note that the following mods are my own ideas and not recommended by McCall Pattern Company. I don't work for them. This is just the approach I would take with each of the patterns.) Take V8950 (view B) as an example.
|Click to view V8950 on Vogue Patterns site.|
Another excellent candidate is K4027 (view A).
|Click to view K4027 on Kwik Sew site.|
For a cardigan, here's the pattern I'd choose. I really love the look and drape of long sleeved K3916 (view B) for a sweater knit.
|Click to view K3916 on Kwik Sew site.|
So now that I've figured out how I'd approach each of these, I guess I should choose one pattern to try. I wonder which one it'll be? Suggestions?
The epilogue: I ended up choosing Kwik Sew 3916. You can read more beginning with this post.
Photos used with permission. Last edit 5Nov2014