10 minute cardigan fix

Have you ever had a clothing item that you really loved in theory, but is kind of hideous when you actually put it on?

Take this cardigan, for instance. Love the color, love the ruffle, but the fit is SO bad. It was the first post-pregnancy shirt I bought for myself. I liked it at first, but as the baby pounds came off I wore it less an less. A shapeless pink sack is not flattering, even with a ruffle.

This morning I decided to take action. I cut off the long sleeves, cut off the sleeve cuffs, and re-attached them to the new short sleeves. Then I took in the sides to give it a better fit.

Much better!
This literally took 10 minutes, and now I have a "new" favorite cardigan. Santa Barbara is making me rethink my winter wardrobe. My box of sweaters is about to be attacked.

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32 comments:

Anne Marie@Married to the Empire said...

Wow! Very cute! Makes me wish my own sewing skills were greater than they actually are...

Mindi said...

I LOVE this idea! I, too, have a right-after-baby-wardrobe that is getting rather frumpy on me (a good sign)... I am not a crafty seamstress like you, but I have a sewing machine and I like to try new things with it. My question (remember, from a novice): Can you sew knit (sweater material) just like you do cotton? How do you ensure it doesn't start unraveling? And, again, just taking it in on the sides, like nothing? I have put darts (or maybe extended them) in the back of a skirt... ie. taken it in? Is that how you did it? Or did you just sew alone the current seam on the side?

Do tell, I am quite curious whether I could make a few of my items look better.. or worse? Might start on an article of clothing that I wouldn't be devastated about "practicing" on.

Laurie Anne said...

Looks Fabulous!

The Harris Family said...

Great improvement. It looks really cute. I am now curious what is hiding in my closet.

emily ann. said...

I have the SAME QUESTIONS as Mindi! I'm a sewing novice and have found all these wonderful refashion ideas that I could use...except I don't know how to sew on knits! Do tell your secrets! :)

Chantalle Bishop said...

I love this! I have been thinking of doing this to some of my sweaters, but haven't yet. I'm at the favorite -just had a baby 3 weeks ago and want things to fit but there is just no way- stage. What a great color sweater too!

Just Rhonda said...

How smart!!! Looks so cute!

Kent and Katie said...

Whoa, nice work. I'll have to remember this one. That looks totally different!

Jill said...

Mindi and emily ann:

I sew on knits just like cottons. This was a knit sweater, and when I cut the sleeves it did not immediately start unraveling. After sewing the cuff back on with a straight stitch, I did go over the raw edges with a zig-zag to keep it together.

As for taking in the sides, I just sewed up either side about a 1/2 inch from the existing seam. It was still a little baggy under the arms, so starting about 3/4 way up the side I angeled in a bit. Sew first, cut second (less pinning!)

There are probably much better ways to do this, but I like my easy method. :)

Court said...

I stumbled upon your blog through a friend of mine. I heart all your fun projects and tutorials. Currently residing in Idaho winter is upon us and more time is spent indoors. I will definitely be visiting your blog for crafting ideas through out the cold winter months.
Thanks for sharing your amazing talents.

Janelle said...

Cute! We were all talking about Halloween costumes at the park the other day and were greatly lamenting the fact that you aren't around to help us -- because you can do cool stuff like this and none of the rest of us can!

gigi said...

Smart girl and very cute sweater.

Erin said...

i have that same cardy (in black) and the same problem with it. and now i will definitely fix it the same way. thanks!!

Kristen said...

that looks real nice! could you tell me how you sewed the knitted fabric? did you use a serger or did you use a double stitch on a regular machine? I'm so afraid to sew knit sweaters like that!

Kim at Polka Dot Thought said...

I need to do this to a few of my cardigans that the sleeves have mysteriously shrunk!! ha ha!

Bobbi said...

Funny you should post this...we just had cardigan surgery at our house too!

Chips and Salsa with Beans said...

Cute sweater recovery! Random question...Could you tell me what font you used to write on your pictures, please?

Jill said...

the font is called "joyful juliana"

Amber said...

You are seriously starting to annoy me with all these genius clothing refashioning plans that I would NEVER attempt on my own clothes! Ok, I'm really just jealous of your skills, not annoyed. Maybe I'll even build up the courage to attempt attacking a sweater...

Diana {The Princess Escapades} said...

Very cool! Great job. :)

likeschocolate said...

Love it! You really got talent!

Lisa said...

I have that same cardi - in light pink and black. And yes they were my 4th trimester staples, but now they are so boxy they just hang in my closet. I wish I could do this.

Kayla said...

I am officialy inspired! Grungy clothes here I come!

Alison said...

I don't know how I found your blog, but I love what you do! After seeing a couple of your posts on "rethinking clothes" I dove into my closet and have a pile of projects ready to go! Thanks for the inspiration to just give it a try!

emily ann. said...

jill

Thank you so much for your tips! I feel a little more confident going in now! :) I think during Nellianne's next nap I just might attempt a refashion! I'll let you know how it goes!

emily ann

jess said...

so much cuter! love those little changes that make a piece totally new!

littlegreen said...

okay I love this. So just yesterday I did the same thing with an old shirt from target, I should have taken pictures. Before I never wanted to wear the shirt and then after I put it on and felt so cute in it, now it's a new favorite, I love giving clothes a new life! I just wish you could do this easily with jeans that are 2 sizes too big! :)

Jamie said...

Great idea! I'm totally going through my wardrobe. :)

mtanner said...

would LOVE a tutorial on this one... this could be such a money saver! (I have that SAME sweater in green- along with the same stretched out pregnancy woes!!) I am a beginning sewer and have no idea how to reattach a sleeve, or take something in. Any tips?

Jennifer DeDonato said...

Taking action girl is working for you!! Great job.

Krista said...

We're in Santa Barbara too! Found you via the Modge Podge blog... How funny!

Elder Family said...

I am wearing a cardigan that I feel exactely the same way about, I think I might give this a try, thanks! I have just stumbled across you site, love it, I am getting caught up on all your ideas!