A Review of The Be Mine Cardigan Pdf Pattern by Ellie & Mac Patterns.
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I picked up the Be Mine Cardigan pdf pattern when it was in the Ellie & Mac Wacky Sale for only $1 (approximately £0.70). I thought it would make a great lightweight outer garment to wear in the warmer months here in the UK.
The Be Mine Cardigan Pattern is one you will not want to miss!! It has such a trendy silhouette. It features hi-low bodice, gathered skirt in three lengths that allow you to make several different looks from one pattern! It is quick and easy to sew up as well!
Source: Ellie & Mac Sewing Patterns
I chose to use some knit fabric for my first Be Mine Cardigan that I purchased online from Forever Fabrics. The fabric was described vaguely as 'grey jersey sparkles'. It's actually more of a knit than jersey with a golden hue heavily doused in glitter! I washed it before using and the washing machine was left coated in a thick layer of glitter - there was also a trail of glitter from the utility room to the garden where I hung it out to dry. I hoped that the fresh Northumberland breeze would get rid of some more glitter and it is still evident months later scattered over the patio. This fabric still leaves a trail of glitter when handled but I'm hoping that if it actually gets worn and washed a few more times the glitter will diminish.
The Be Mine Cardigan Pdf comes in A0, A4, US Letter and Projector versions with Layers enabled. It is available in sizes XXS - 6XL which is full bust 29" - 61". The pattern is drafted for a Curvy Fit Size Chart based on a female body type with a height of 5'5" and a 8" side waist. Recommended fabric is 50% 4-way stretch knit.
The Be Mine Cardigan has the following sleeve options:
short with ruffle
and comes in three lengths:
I chose to make the boho length with ruffle sleeves.
I have made quite a few Ellie & Mac patterns (My review of The Cuddle Tunic is here.) and they are quite easy to make, straight forward patterns. The instructions are reasonably clear but if you prefer a more visual aid there is a YouTube video showing construction.
My knit fabric is quite lightweight so I added reinforcement to the Be Mine Cardigan shoulder seams. To do this I positioned Clear Elastic onto the seam within the 1/4" seam allowance. I used double-sided tape that dissolves after washing to keep it in place and then serged. The serger blade cuts off the excess elastic. Make sure to add the clear elastic to the back pattern pieces so once the seams are pressed back the elastic isn't against the skin.
Adding Ruffles to the sleeves of The Be Mine Cardigan is a nice touch. I do have a gathering foot attachment for my sewing machine but have never had any luck with it. Instead I sew a basting stitch along the ruffle edge with the tension set high. If you gently stretch the fabric as you sew you will get gathering which can still be adjusted as required if you leave your sewing tails long. I added the ruffles to the sleeves, then added the sleeves to the bodice before sewing the side seams all in one go.
The Be Mine Cardigan has a band at the front that runs from the bottom hem, round the neck and back down to the hem. The instructions require you to hem the bottom and then add the band. I thought that this would leave an untidy finish. For a neater finish I followed these steps:
serge the bottom raw edge
pin the centre/neck band in place leaving 1/2" at the bottom edge for the hem allowance
fold the bottom serged edge up, right sides together, enclosing the band
sew band to front pieces and turn out
hem bottom edge
I'm really pleased with the finish using this method - and it does demonstrate that my sewing skills are improving because previously I would never of thought of this solution!
The glitter fabric that I used for my Be Mine Cardigan have made it appear more of a dressier garment but I still really love it! I can see more versions of this being made using different stretch fabrics. I think it's the perfect light cover to wear when the weather's too warm for a jacket.