When I ordered both solid grey and maroon fleck sweatshirt fabrics from Minerva Crafts (free as part of their blogging network), I had grand visions of a colorblocked sweatsuit. When the fabrics arrived, I changed my mind because I didn’t like the two colors together like I thought I would (it’s so hard to order fabric online sometimes) and I realized that, now that I work at home, I really don’t need any more excuses to not actually get dressed for the day and sweatpants barely count as getting dressed. So, I rattled through about 400 different permutations of what these fabrics could become and I am absolutely thrilled with where I ended up!
For the grey fabric, I used a vintage Butterick pattern from 1976, Butterick 6336. Although the pattern calls for a woven, I thought that a stable knit like the grey sweatshirt fabric (which has almost no stretch) would work, and I thought it would be nice to have a sweatshirt that doesn’t look like a sweatshirt. Like I said, I’m working from home now, so any opportunity to wear comfy clothes that don’t look like I’m wearing comfy clothes is a good thing.
Since the instructions call for the bodice pleats to be topstitched down, I put all of the different colors of thread I have on top of the grey fabric in order to choose one that would be a fun contrast. After starting to sew, I realized that I happened to have this amazing vintage turquoise zipper in my stash that was a perfect match for the thread! At one point I had a pink version of this zipper too, but I used it on silver velour bell-bottom jumpsuit that I ended up donating after being mistaken for a drag queen in it one too many times (true story).
I thought that I wouldn’t care for the ridiculous 70’s sleeves, but I went ahead and sewed them as written, thinking that I could always cut them down if I don’t like them. I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but I adore these ridiculous sleeves! I’ve always thought that my favorite vintage clothing is 1950’s and 1960’s, but I seem to have accumulated a ton of different 1970’s patterns and I seem to be developing a weak spot for them, so prepare for even more 70’s silliness to come :)
I tried to get some photos of me and Beauregard the Beagle (my mom’s dog who we are caring for for a few months) since he is simply adorable and everybody loves a cute dog, but this is the closest I could get. Oh well!
With the burgundy fleck (it’s called “wine” but I think my photos represent the color better than those on the website), I thought I would make cardigan since I wear cardigans a lot. I love the slightly professorial look of this shawl collar, raglan sleeve, button front cardigan. The burgundy is a rich, warm color that makes the sweatshirt look as comfortable (in a good way) as it feels, and the flecks give it a bit of interest.
I started with a vintage Stretch & Sew pattern from 1986, Stretch & Sew 1571. I thought it would be fun to make a full-on 80’s style cardigan, oversize and all. I was riding high on the success of my full-on 70’s sweatshirt. And when I sewed the cardigan as written I hated it. Oversized and 80’s may be in style again but I just don’t ever like the way they look on me, no matter how many times I try. I know that I knew better, but sometimes I just have to make the same mistake more than once.
So, I cut down the sweater to a more modern, straight and slim silhouette. It’s not perfect since I had to work with the already-cut oversize pieces. But I got it pretty close, and I’m really happy with how it turned out.
The buttons were vintage and from my stash. I’m sure that I could have picked out beautiful buttons from Minerva, had I had any foresight about what I was going to sew, but because I changed my mind so many times, they came from my stash. And I actually love the combination. I think it helps to push the sweater toward professorial and away from 1980’s, and it’s a fun way to showcase some vintage buttons.
My grey sweatshirt definitely counts for my vintage sewing pledge. Jury’s out on whether my burgundy one does as well, since I tried to make it vintage :)