Thread Theory Newcastle Cardigan

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OK, I know his birthday was in February, but since my mum’s still waiting for her Christmas present, this is actually pretty good going.  Back around Christmas, I made let my brother have a look at the Thread Theory pattern shop to see if there was anything he’d like.  He chose the Newcastle Cardigan, which just goes to show the wisdom of letting people choose their own stuff, as this was probably the last thing I’d have picked!

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I made up a size Medium (to fit 38 – 40″), based on eyeballing and process of elimination.  I do realise that my previous menswear disasters have been mainly based around being too lazy to get the size right, but I didn’t have a chance to measure him, and it’s worked out pretty well this time!  There’s a bit of pulling here and there, but meh, it’s not too bad.  I do intend to learn from past mistakes and all that, just, you know, mañana…

This is the version with the smaller collar – I was concerned the larger shawl collar might be a bit much.  Looking at these pictures, I don’t think it would, but I’m happy with this one.  The fabric is out of Abakhan’s ‘sweatshirting’ basket  – I think the whole lot cost me about £12, and I still have enough left to make either me or one of the kids something.  No idea what fibre it is – it’s a knit, but has some kind of fleecy backing which reduces the stretch loads.  This encouraged me no end, I can tell you…

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The pattern is just a joy to sew up, and the instructions are great.  The fabric was really easy to work with, though a good tip when this kind of thick, squishy stuff is to reduce the presser foot pressure if you can, and lengthen the stitch length a bit.  The only thing I did differently, construction-wise, was to stitch the back neck facing down all along it’s edge to secure it – you can see the stitching on the back yoke, but I thought this would be less annoying than having to get it to lie flat every time he put it on..

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On the hanger, this stitching is covered by the collar, but I guess a human takes up more collar than a hanger…

I’m pretty happy with the finish on this – things like the cuffs, which are stitched-in-the-ditch from the outside, just catching the edge of the cuff on the inside, are (for me) an enormous triumph.  It all caught first time, because I hand-basted the damn things.  Honestly, this took me about 5 minutes, and saved the 45 minutes of repeated unpicking which invariably results when I take short-cuts.  Noted…

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The buttons are quite chunky, so I backed them with these little metal ones to try and protect the button-band a bit.

All-in-all, I think I can count this a success!  I thoroughly recommend the pattern, and am only a little sad I can’t make one to fit me…  Happy with the fit and finish – happy days all round, in fact!  How boring is that haha…

Thanks to my mum for these photos (brother is visiting her at the moment), and brother whose posing skills make mine look almost adequate.

Have a good week!

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