As an island girl, you probably won’t see me in a coat anytime soon but that does not mean I don’t love a good topper! I’ve always been a jacket and cardigan type of gal and with the right fabric choice, they work perfectly for my tropical climate. Especially right now.. it is super chilly and windy! The nights are actually a little too cold for me. You would probably laugh if I tell you the temperature.. but to us.. it is kinda freezing at the moment!
I think a cardigan or jacket makes a really easy outfit. I literally wear a tank top, throw on a topper and immediately look put together. So far I’ve made the Boyfriend and Canyon cardigans. The Fraser is on my to-sew list too but I really wanted a fun cropped style that I could wear as a top on it’s own plus a little cardigan. I definitely see them trending in the shops and on socials right now!
Arlington Sweater Cardigan Top Hack
Although I’d been dreaming up the cropped cardigan, I didn’t think to hack a Love Notions pattern. I planned to just see who was selling a similar pattern. Well, my darling secret sewist Katie picked me this handles print cotton spandex and mentioned an Arlington hack. I had a lightbulb moment when planning my secret sewist make – my cropped cardigan top came to fruition!
It turned out so good, I filmed a tutorial because you all need to make your own! So here are my two versions and my Youtube video showing the steps from start to finish. I love that I have a neutral one that could pair with anything and a fun bright one that is a stand out piece on its own! Let me know in the comments which one is your fave! P.S. I paired both with Love Notions Legato Jeans!!
Aria Button Down Shacket/Vest Hack
I am on a roll getting back into hacking right now. Shackets are another rave item I’ve been eyeing. I thought the Aria Button-down would make the most amazing shacket. I simply cropped the pattern and added cargo like pockets and a front yoke. I omitted the black pleat and frayed the hem. If you want to see my original Aria shirts for good measure, I wrote a blog post for that too!
My one hiccup is that the corduroy I used ended up way too thick for the sleeve plackets and I decided to just scrap sleeves. Oh my goodness, it makes the cutest vest! I took some off the armholes since it will now be sleeveless and now I need to finish the armholes.. should I fray? Or just use bias binding? To be decided! Lastly, I’d add some heavy duty snaps to give it that denim vest look. I can already tell this is going to be a fave!
My Boyfriend Cardigans are my most worn. The pink and blue velvet version is the duster length with side slits. It is super fashionable and makes a bold statement! My black and gold version, though more understated than my velvet one, also stands out because of the glitter effect. I am so glad I grabbed this fabric. It is a polyblend rib knit and I was able to use the plain black wrong side as a contrast collar to break up the gold glitter a bit. That one is the thigh length cardigan. I have a Youtube video reviewing the Boyfriend Cardigan pattern in more detail.
Canyon is the floatiest cardigan ever in the best way possible! My sleeveless waterfall version is perfect for warm sunny days. The tie dye print resembles clouds and I love to wear it over a white tank top with jeans or shorts. It is super lightweight made up in rayon spandex and it was an absolute joy to sew. Very simple make but the waterfall effect makes it look like it took alot more time and effort. If you want a deeper comparison, I have a blog post comparing the Boyfriend and Canyon cardigans!
Lastly, the Metra Blazer is a great topper especially if you need to make your outfit look a little more professional. I made mine in an animal print scuba crepe. The construction techniques are so unique and interesting and result in the biggest coolest pockets ever. I love both collar options but went with the wide lapel for this one. If you’d like a detailed pattern review, head over to my Youtube video. My favourite thing about the Metra is how different fabric choices change the look completely. I live a very casual lifestyle as I no longer work in an office environment so I need to make a more casual version asap! Feel free to drop me some fabric recommendations below!
That is my little round up of my 5 favorite topper patterns by Love Notions Sewing Patterns. Lucky for you, the entire website is 30% off this week January 2nd – 6th. PLUS you can use my code keira10 for an extra 10% off on top of sale prices! So if any of these pieces tickled your fancy, now is a great time to grab the patterns and make your own!
Hi Keira. Having seen your beautiful designs and models, I’m already a fan of yours. We are actually cousins, by the way. Your mum and I were chatting and she told me about you. You are extremely talented and I’m very proud to be related to you.
I used to sew dresses myself years ago and even made my six bridesmaids dresses.
Hi Jacqueline! Nice to meet you! Yes my mom did mention that she shared my info with you. Wow I can’t believe you made your bridesmaids dresses.. that is so cool! And 6 is alot too! So I have sewists in my family on both my Mom’s side and Dad’s side. This was destined to be my life path clearly!
Wonderful choices. Your makes are always full of great color and inspiration.
All great choices here, Keira! Love how you hacked the Arlington though. Brilliant!