Danielle's got style and drafts a Hudson sweater with a few surprises. She shares the ideas behind her creation and gives a few tips too. - O!
Inspired by the New Hudson sweater knit fabric, I got the idea to make a sweater with a shirttail hem. The first thing I needed to do was to decide which design to actually use! I'm definitely a fan of hooded sweaters but I decided to forgo a hood for this project. Instead I went with a simple tunic length sweater with a v-neck.
The stand out feature would be the shirttail hem. For this version, I decided to make it slightly longer in the back. Shirttail hems on pullover shirts can be really chic. The key is getting the right curve on the bottom. In some online tutorials for a shirttail hem on a knit shirt, the results look more like a perfect, round scallop rather than a bell-shaped curve. A bell shape more closely resembles the hem of a men's dress shirt, which was my original inspiration for this sweater.
My next challenge was deciding which side of the fabric to treat as the "outside". The pattern is more pronounced on one side, so that should be considered the "right" side, but it also kind of looked like the back side of a cable knit. I went out on a limb and sewed on the other, smooth side.
|Smooth side (on the left) was used as the "right" side for this project.|
Front and BackAfter folding and laying out my t-shirt template on the sweater fabric, I marked out a rough hemline. Because I was using a standard length t-shirt, I had to add a few inches in order to make it hip length/tunic length. I added an extra 2 inches on the side and a total of 5 inches to the center front. From there I made a curved line from my 2-inch mark on the side seam to my 5-inch mark on the center front.
Sleeves and ArmscyeFor the sleeve I used a pattern that I have previously made. If you are tracing a t-shirt as a template, but using a commercial pattern for a sleeve, you will need to make sure that your armscye (the armhole of your shirt) matches the curve of your sleeve. For example if the top curve of your sleeve is 20 inches, your arm holes (front and back together) must be around 20 inches in order to fit without any tucks or pulling. In order to measure what your total armhole will be in your shirt, you will need to measure the armhole curve of the front and the back, and add them together (subtracting any seam allowance). See diagram below. However all of this can be avoided if you are using a commercial pattern for the entire sweater. ;)
NecklineAfter cutting out the basic shapes -- my front, back and sleeves, I felt the the style needed something else. I cut a shallow V-neck into the front neckline and had the idea to do a tie around the neck. For the necktie, I simply used a narrow cut of the selvage, using the curl of the knit to my advantage. This tie is also used to finish the back neckline to bind the raw edge.
I stabilized the front neckline with a facing and topstitching. The facing is a 2-way stretch fabric which provides stability and flexibility for the neckline.
|Facing seen from the inside of sweater|
FinishingAs with my last sweater project, I finished the sleeves with elastic before turning and stitching them. Even though I'm still wondering about my choice to sew the fabric with the texture on the inside instead of out, I really like how this sweater turned out. I actually wore this sweater the day after I finished it. The only problem area was the hem of the back (not pictured). It was a little wavy. I believe that this is because the curve is more dramatic than the front due to it being 2 inches longer. I will be shortening it to be the same length as the front. Other than that, this project was definitely a success, and I'm looking forward to the next one. :)
|Danielle Pierce, a fashion designer from Memphis, Tennessee, is also a skilled pattern maker and technical designer. Her clothing line, Danália by DP, specializes in resort wear for women. When not working on her own projects, Danielle assists other emerging fashion designers with production of their fashion lines. Danielle is currently preparing to launch her own blog and website. In the meantime, see some of Danielle's work here.|
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Last update 22Apr2016