Tuesday, August 31, 2010

LOFT-Inspired Ruffle Front Cardigan DIY Tutorial

I am in LOVE with this cardigan (left - it does have ruffles after all), but with all the sales LOFT has, I'm hard-pressed to pay retail for anything.  I know, it's like a sickness.  Except handbags...I have a soft spot for handbags, hence my tPF obsession.  Ahem, back to the matter at hand.  I have a cheapie cardigan that I wanted to make over, at least temporarily, to fulfill my ruffle madness.  I actually tried this several ways before I got it to "work."  First with grosgrain ribbon (too stiff) ruffled, then pleated (looked forced), and then finally a thin broadcloth ruffled.  Ideally I would have a navy chiffon but I could not for the life of me find one at the local Joann's yesterday :(  A few differences to note - since even thin broadcloth is thicker than chiffon, the DIY cardigan ruffles have more volume.  Also, the cardigan I chose just so happens to be a full-sleeved, longer type of sweater than the cropped LOFT version.  OK, enough blabbing.  On to the step-by-step tutorial after the jump!

First, choose a cardigan to "makeover"

Choose a fabric matching your cardigan.  A sheer chiffon is ideal but a thin broadcloth
like mine will also work.  I personally like raw, frayed edges so I left mine alone but you can always hem / double up / use fray check on yours.  

I cut my fabric into 4 strips of 48" x 3.25".  The length depends on your cardi length (you want approx. 2x the length) and width depends on your preferences.

Sew a running stitch (this is a loose stitch setting on your machine) down the middle.  Then pull one of the threads to start the ruffling / bunching.  Be careful to pull gently, you don't want the thread to break.  Also make sure that post-ruffling, the length is still long enough to run down your cardi.

You could probably do one ruffle per side but I'm ruffle crazy so I folded the 3rd and 4th ruffles in half to peek out from the full-sized ruffles.

Pin your ruffles in place.  Make sure the top and bottom ends are looped to the inside of the cardi so the edges can't be seen from the front.

Sew the top and bottom down with matching thread.

Add intermittent stitches down the ruffles (my stitches are where the dimples are) to secure.

And voila, you're finished!  Third tutorial down, I hope they are getting easier to follow :)  As always, would love to hear any thoughts!

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  1. Ahh fantastic! I liked that cardigan too, but didn't love the mauve nor the turquoise, and didn't want to pay even for the sale price. You're churning out so many DIY garments! Must add you to my petites blogroll now...I hope others will find this tutorial helpful.

  2. That seems like a pretty simple DIY project! Pictures definitely help alot! Your cardigan actually reminds me of AN's BR ruffle cardigan but with bigger ruffles. Maybe it's the color :) Hope to keep seeing more projects from you!

  3. PAG - I have some OOTDs and reviews (Burb kids and reg. Burb) upcoming too :) Thank you for adding me to your blogroll - I feel very honored! :)

    PetiteXXS - I hadn't even seen that BR cardi, but yes it's definitely much more similar to that! I'm glad the tutorials are making more sense with the photos, I aim to please :)

  4. Oooo burb kids and burb regular...your blog is quickly becoming one of my regular stops.

    PetiteXXS - oh how funny, I have that sweater in black and it's a work staple.

  5. Aww, thanks curls-and-pearls (and thanks also for reading)! :)

  6. What a beautiful job! I love how it looks so close to the original - so chic and elegant!
    BTW, your project was one of the top 3 in my last DIY Roundup.
    I featured it here:


  7. Wowie! I think yours turned out better than the original!

  8. Super cute. Isn't it amazing what you can do? Makes me wonder why I buy anything anymore!

  9. Anonymous and Susan - Thank you! I try to make an effort to buy items I cannot make for the given price but sometimes I give in :)

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  11. Hi! I just found your blog today, and am loving it! These ruffles are lovely; I have a few cardigans that I got on sale but never use. Something like this may be what they need for a bit of life. I wonder, without fray check, how well do the ruffles hold up when washed? Do you hand wash? Thanks!

    1. Oh my goodness, I am SO sorry! I must have overlooked this somehow! I've only very gingerly washed this using the Dryel system (toss in a bag in a dryer) so haven't actually washed this traditionally. I would assume that the ruffles (esp. if you use cotton like mine) would shrivel into a wrinkled mess and that it would fray too much.

  12. Honestly I like your cardigan better than the name brand..

    Blue Eyed Beauty Blog

  13. love it! i'm going to have to give it a go :)

  14. All I can say is beautiful, I love it. Thank you for the great tutorial.

  15. Absolutely love this gooing to give this a try this weekend!!!!


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