While we're on the subject of hot pink peplums, it seemed a good time to share this sweater refashion I did at the end of last year. When I was shopping the thrift store for suitable sweaters a couple years ago, I ran across this one. 98% cashmere and hot pink, how could I resist? At first, I planned to keep the neck tie thingy as a neck tie thingy, but move it so that the tie was to the side rather than center. The vaguely sailor-esque thing didn't do anything for me. Then I hit on the idea of using the tie as a waistband and the whole thing came together.
To shape the bodice, I used the popular boatneck top Burda 02-2009-108. I actually refashioned the sweater before making my ruffle shoulder top of the pattern. I had to cut the front with a scooped neck due to the original design of the blouse, so I widened the shoulders about 3/4 of an inch to ensure the blouse didn't fall off.
I also kept the original sleevecap, as I wanted an exaggerated 80s puffed sleeve. It didn't turn out as puffy as I'd hope, but I think it still looks deliberate rather than just poorly eased and installed.
As mentioned, I turned the tie neck into a waistband. The tie was a different weave from the rest of the sweater, ribbed and a little thicker and more stable. Unfortunately, it wasn't woven as a straight piece but had a "bulge" in the middle. I cut it as straight as I could along the "ribs" but it also had a slight curve so that wasn't 100% possible. I gathered the peplums into the lower edge of the waistband.
Several people asked how I handled the neckline without stretching it. In this case, when I cut off the tie I was careful to cut as small as possible along the stitch line. The neckline next to the tie had been reinforced in manufacturing, and so I just needed to treat it carefully to prevent stretching. To finish the neckline, I used a twin needle and was careful while sewing to position the raw edge of the neckline (down along the feed dogs) so the "zig" would be on the neckline and the "zag" would be just off it. I tried to manipulate the photo so you could see the stitching on the outside and inside; click to enlarge.
If your neckline is not finished in manufacturing, it can still be finished nicely! First, finish the edge. I recommend a zigzag over a serged finish unless you are very confident in the differential feed of your serger. If you use the serger, put it on the most gatheringest differential feed setting. Once the finish is done, you must steam steam steam to get the neckline back into shape. The beauty of working with wool is that it should steam back into a reasonable facsimile of a neckline. Once it's back in shape you can fuse it with a strip of tricot interfacing cut on the bias to keep it in shape. Then sew with a twin needle as I showed above.
Note that I don't have a coverstitch machine, so I can't say how coverstitch would perform versus twin needle.
It definitely needs a belt. The 80s styling finally got me to add a length of elastic to this belt buckle purchased from Exquisite Fabrics in Georgetown in October 2009 for $5 (the packaging makes me think it was actually from the 80s). I don't know what took me so long to make this considering it took under 5 minutes to thread the elastic through the bars on the belt and stitch it in place. I've worn it a ton since then, it is too fun!
I bought five or six sweaters to refashion in late 2009 or early 2010 and realized as 2010 was drawing to a close that I hadn't done any refashions yet that winter. When I bought the thrift store sweaters, I went for 100% wool (or cashmere in this case) only. However, I wasn't really thinking about my taste. Most of the sweaters are a thick wool and I don't see myself wearing something that bulky no matter how cute the refashion. So I think I will be doing a re-donate for most of them. However, this thinner texture is perfect for me, not to mention I love the color! The refashion isn't perfect (the waistband area is truly ugly), but with a belt to hide the imperfections it's a great go-to sweater.