March 10, 2011

DIY Dose: Cream and Lace Cardi

Sweater in it's original form, complete with chintzy flower.

I adored this little cardigan it's lovely almond color and simple, sweet silhouette has complimented many a summer outfit.  Then I inexplicably fell out of love with it, I became bored with it, the shirring at the shoulders and the little chiffon flower no longer seemed current.  I still thought it had potential so instead of depositing it into the giveaway bag I placed it in the fix-it bag. There it sat for a couple of weeks before inspiration struck.  Do you remember the lace and embroidery that I salvaged from this dress well it became an integral part of the sweater's makeover.

Cutting the lace and embroidery free from the dress.

The first step was deciding where I wanted to add the lovely lacey embellishment.  I was originally thinking of doing an asymmetrical design, but decided that I wanted the focal point of the sweater to be the back and the shoulders.  The sweater had shirring and a chiffon flower on the shoulders, so I decided that both had to go.  I took a seam ripper and removed the elastic at the shoulders and the flower.  After a quick look over the sweater I decided that the buttons had to go as well, the were made out of the same materials and weren't really the look I was going for. 

Cardi minus flower, shirring and buttons.  
I laid the sweater flat, and marked the center back with a pin.  I placed a pin in the center of the piece of the embroidered fabric, laying the lace over the sweater I matched to two pins.  After matching up the centers of the fabric I began pinning the fabric, working my way out from the center.

Pin action.
With the lace pinned down I examined the effect.  I trimmed off the extra lace and adjusted the fabric till it looked even.  I used a simple whipstitch to attach the fabric to the sweater.  I took care to find a thread that matched the embroidered fabric rather than the sweater since I wanted the stitch to be as invisible as possible.

 Whipstitch worked around the edge of the fabric.

The cardigan formally know as chintzy is now looking like a brand new sweater. The only thing that was left to do was to replace the buttons.  I have buttons galore, left overs, cast-offs, so I dug into the button container and found five small ivory pearl buttons.  They weren't a matching set, but I thought that they looked close enough to work, plus it would add to the vintage feel of the sweater. 

Button Close-up!

I am really thrilled with how this project turned out.  The cardigan looks even better than I had imagined it would and I now have a completely new piece in my closet without spending a cent.  That's right this project cost me $0 since I used fabric scraps and materials I had on hand.  If you don't have any embroidered fabric on hand you can recreate the look by purchaseing appliques or lace trim.  

Cardigan cuteness front...

and back!

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