I'm sold: I'm sewing my sweaters from now on.
OK, maybe I won't sew every sweater, but this sweater knit thing is very cool. It's not really hard to do once you get your technique down -- the technique being primarily how much to stretch the neckband as you stitch it onto the neck of the sweater (same goes for waistband and cuffs to some extent). It's the same issue you'd have sewing cotton jersey, but it's actually easier with the sweater knit because the wool is much more forgiving than the knit jersey would be.
And then of course there's the serging. But how difficult is that really?
BTW, I actually made some piping yesterday evening -- first time ever -- and tested it. Way too thick and rigid.
As it turned out, the (four-thread) serged seams are sufficient by themselves. I didn't reinforce them with anything like clear elastic as I've never seen clear elastic reinforcing the seams of any sweater or sweatshirt I've ever owned.
Cutting was relatively straightforward, though I was very careful not to stretch out the wool edges cut on the bias (since this is a raglan sweater, there are many). My sweater knit is rather thick and (relatively) loose, so I had to be careful how I handled it: basically as little as possible. I staystitched the neckline before attaching the neckband.
Once lined up, the layers hardly shifted. Pins aren't much use with this kind of knit, though I used them occasionally when I was adding the ribbed bands.
I stitched all my seams first before serging them, and then I serged over the stitched seam, not just along the seam allowance.
As you can see, the wrong side of this wool is very fluffy. I believe it's a mohair blend.
Finally, I did decide to add the "v" at the neckline and I'm glad I did -- the sweater is styled like a sweatshirt (wider cuffs and waistband), which gives it a sporty look.
I'll post photos of me in the sweater next week. Tomorrow I may make Michael a sweater vest with the remaining houndstooth (there's a lot), and I still might have enough for a dog coat!
I'm a native New Yorker and sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using vintage sewing machines and vintage patterns, in addition to sewing for private clients. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!