Three Strikes…

Three strikes and I want more!  This is my third Longley Cardi by Wendy Ward, previous versions here.  I had in mind to make a stripe version of this cardi for a while, I pictured wide stripes in either a sturdy or drapey jersey.  This particular stripe jersey is from Ditto Fabrics, the last of the pieces I binge-bought back in January!

I saw the picture, registered the size of the stripe and added 2.5m pretty much immediately to the basket.  I didn’t read any further.  You know what’s coming….

Collage stripe longley
Wendy Ward Longley Cardigan

So when you don’t order samples and don’t read the fabric description properly, sometimes the fabric that arrives is a little bit of a surprise!  The stripes run the length of the fabric, opposite to what I thought they’d be.  I was expecting your typical viscose jersey, in feel and handle.  What came felt rather different.  It’s described as having a “silky feel”.  To be honest, when it came I would have described it as full on polyester.  So  procrastinated, wasn’t even sure I liked it.


One thing I really don’t like is waste, and not using this fabric felt a whole heap like wasting.  So I just got on with it.  I wanted the stripes to line up going up and down across the bands, so I made sure to cut the hem and neck bands very carefully to line up with the back piece on the fold.  I couldn’t get the front band stripes to match both the back and front, and as the front has lots of drape it was decided it would be more forgiving to non-matching.

Matching stripes!

After all the kerfuffle and uncertainty, I’ve decided I do rather like this cardi, stripes, fabric, the lot.  It counts towards my Sew Seasonal Wardrobe and being a staple blue and white, will go with pretty much everything already made and those pieces yet to be sewn.

Birgitte Tee, Birkin Flares & Longley Cardi. Silver trainers from La Redoute.

I like the way the stripes change with the drape on the front, horizontal stripes on the front neck band contrasting with vertical stripes on the sleeves.  It’s a more interesting cardigan than I thought it was going to be!  No bad thing there.  So it’s a success in the end, have you had doubts about a project, only to have it turn out ok on the day?

Like Mother, Like Daughter

Wendy Ward Longley Cardi
Wendy Ward Longley Cardi

Here we go with the first of the “proper” post of 2016!  I really like waterfall cardigans, floaty, drapey and mostly in jersey or fine knit fabrics.  So when Wendy Ward released the Longley Cardi I was keen to make one up.  I wanted the right fabric though.  This entailed online fabric searches, fabric store rummaging and general procrastination.  Then I found something…  A fine silvery sweater knit at Croft Mill Fabrics.  At just £4.50 a metre it wasn’t going to be a train smash if it didn’t work!  I loved the fabric when it came, silver & sparkly & drapey!

DSC00238I traced the largest size (honestly my measurements were a tad bigger) and thought I’d just wing it…  The cardi is really quick to make, once the pieces are cut out and pinned together (making sure the neckline and shoulders are reinforced with Vilene bias tape) the overlocker makes short work of it.  Making took me 2 hours flat.  The instructions are simple, easy to follow and pretty obvious really.  The “booklet” is a ribbon bound couple of pages that keeps everything short and sweet, unlike some indies who think you need 4 pages of fabric layouts….

DSC00239DSC00243Originally I was making the cardi just as it comes, there are long cuffs to add to the end of the sleeves, but once it was done and I’d put it on I realised they had to go!  In a different, sturdier, fabric they’d probably be fine, but the sleeve is the perfect length for me without the deep cuff.  In the fine sweater knit they just drooped and slip off over my hand.  I hadn’t worn jumpers in that way (pulled over my hand) since high school!! 🙂  So I cut them off and tapering the sleeve towards the end slightly, just turned up a 1.5cm hem and used the twin needle to stitch it in place.  Works perfectly!

Longley Cardi with the long cuffs
Longley Cardi with the long cuffs

I’ve worn this cardi loads!!  It works brilliantly to dress up jeans & with pretty much every top in my wardrobe, it’s silver, the perfect colour!!  Now I am on the look out for a good ponte to make another – for me.  Because I’ve already made another for Daughter no2.

Blue marle Longley Cardi
Blue marle Longley Cardi

There were admiring glances cast in the direction of my silver cardi on one of her weekends home from uni, so I offered to make her one of her own (before mine disappeared) in another fine knit I had in the stash.  I’d got it from FabricLand in Reading back in August and had used a bit of it, but having bought 3m still had plenty left.

DSC00214Again, an easy and very quick make, and again, I omitted the cuffs.  Then I wrapped it up and popped it into ther Christmas present pile!  Since getting it I think she’s worn it constantly!  I made the smallest size for her and no alterations at all.  Now I just need to make one for daughter no1…

I love the way the back flows softly down the the front points I love the way the back flows softly down the the front points

So if you’re thinking of a drapey cardi that you can throw on over – or under, anything, this one is great!  Really quick to make, easy to put together and looks pretty darned good to boot!


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