The Jenna Cardi

This is the new pattern from one of my lovely WSBN friends here in Welly. The amazing Kat launched Muse last week with this first pattern, the Jenna cardi, named after her equally lovely sister.

I was lucky enough to be one of the testers. It’s actually the first time I’ve tested a pattern and I was so flattered when asked, my mind went into overdrive! Crazy English lady that I am!

Straight away I printed it out and stuck it all together, I just couldn’t wait to get going! The pattern pieces lined up perfectly. Some patterns I’ve printed are just slightly out, but this one was perfect (yes I was using a printer I’d used before.) Next was to find something from stash I could use to make it up. The fabric was a wool viscose and very loosely woven, plus it slipped and slid everywhere. Note to self, don’t sew with wool viscose unless completely necessary!

I cut out a size 40, simply because I’m halfway between sizes. My fabric choice was poor and in hindsight, the 38 would have been plenty big enough!  Anyway, this pattern has lots of options with sleeve lengths and the optional yoke detail. It’s also sized from a 32 to 48, which should cater for a lot of sizes.

I decided the longer hip length cardi with long sleeves would get the most wear, but since I didn’t really have the amount of fabric recommended I had to ignore the cutting layout (not ideal, but sometimes needs must.) I also realised there wasn’t enough for the sleeves! Help! Then I checked them out, they were too long for me, so I happily cut them a couple of inches shorter.

Please note: I wasn’t the only one with short arms and the long sleeve pattern pieces have now been altered in the published pattern, so you should all be AOK.

I did cut the side seams curved as in the pattern, but with my loosely knitted fabric, this didn’t work and I actually stitched the side seams straight down from the waist. This works brilliantly with my fabric giving me a loose fit cardi which goes with so many things in my wardrobe…

Gabrianna, Mortmain, Cami, unblogged pencil skirt, Tania culottes and Kay Unger dress to mention but a few 😉

I think Kat has actually altered this hip length curve slightly since testing to make this fit better.

I think that’s enough on the fit, what about the construction? Well if you want an easy cardi pattern, this is the one for you. It goes together so quickly, I’d cut it out and made it up in about four/five hours total. All my seams are finished with a wide zig-zag stitch and so it would be even quicker if you use an overlocker (which I don’t have).

The instructions are really well written with clear pictures. I’m a great one for looking at the pictures and ignoring the instructions and Kat’s images didn’t disappoint. What I really like is that the sleeves are attached before sewing the whole side seam from cuff to waist. I love this type of construction which gives a really clean finish and is so much easier to insert sleeves this way. The cuffs for the sleeve and waist give a really nice finish to this pattern, giving it a great fit.

The button band is interfaced with non-stretch interfacing ensuring the button band keeps it’s shape and is really structured. I spent ages cogitating and ruminating over the buttons, in the end I went with these silver pink flowery buttons I got from Fabric-a-Brac.

The details
Fabric:  A ribbed pink wool viscose from Fabric-a-Brac, October 2013
Notions:   Non-sretch interfacing, thread and buttons from Fabric-a-Brac, February 2014.
Pattern:  Jenna cardi – the first pattern from Muse Patterns
First worn:  As soon as I’d finished it, about a week ago!
Worn here with:  A RTW skirt from Zara (old from the UK), purple tights and black boots from Overland. Oh and a hat I’ve knitted (not blogged about).
Changes made:  Since I was testing, I made as the pattern said. The only change I made was to stitch straight down the side seam.
Another one?  I think I might just have to. This pattern is fabulous. I’d love to find a much more structured knit to create the version with the yoke.

No outtakes this time, but a sad end to the tale 😦 I wore this lots, then washed it in exactly the same way as before I cut it. I dried it flat too and the cardi has stretched widthways (the stretch way) and shurnk in the length 😥 I’m currently at a loss with what to do, I might try washing it again and being even more careful how I lay it flat.

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5 thoughts on “The Jenna Cardi

  1. When you rewash it, try adding some vinegar to the final rinse then kind of 'block' it like you do handknitting. Protein fibres respond well to acids, and it might help it to regain its original shape.

    The cardi, as pictured here, is just gorgeous 🙂

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