Creative articles about sewing

Remake of my favorite sweater on the L460 overlocker

Do you also have a sweater that you love to wear every day? But over time, if it gets holes or the fabric stretches out, it slowly ends up at the back of the closet or even in the clothing bin… I decided to remake my favorite sweater. A perfect project to do on my BERNINA L 460 overlocker.

Image of BERNINA L 460.

BERNINA L 460

The BERNINA overlocker L 460 offers up to 1500 stitches per minute and ensures beautiful and flexible stitches. The BERNINA L 460 is the perfect overlocker/serger for the creative sewer of knitwear.

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In this blog post, I’ll take you through the process. It’s a lot of fun to do! So, grab that old sweater from your closet and get started.

Favorite Sweater

Here is the sweater in question. What makes this sweater so great? The length is just right, it fits comfortably loose, but not too much. And it has short sleeves.

Maybe it’s a bit odd, a sweater with short sleeves. But I really like the short sleeves when working in the studio and at the sewing machine. With other sweaters, I always end up with rolled-up (stretched-out) sleeves.

Well, it’s just a great sweater for me. Time to take it apart.

Operation Sweater

The sweater was entirely made with an overlocker. I chose to cut out all the seams. This way, I could trace the parts onto pattern paper.

Some parts of the sweater were a bit stretched out and probably not in their original shape. This is something to keep in mind in the next step, drawing the pattern.

Making the Pattern

I have some experience sewing sweaters from knit fabric. Mostly I’ve made small sweaters and cardigans for kids and babies. Beyond that, I have no experience designing clothes or drawing patterns. But as with many things, you learn a lot by just doing and seeing where you end up.

Tracing

You should first iron the loose parts. Then determine which parts need to be drawn as doubles and which as singles.

The front and back pieces can be folded in the middle and cut on the fabric fold later.

For the sleeve, you only need to draw one pattern piece, from which you’ll cut two sleeves.

Check Check double check

This sweater turned out to be a very good practice model, a raglan sweater. The pattern has many straight seams, making it easy to check if everything matches up.

For the sleeve, I checked if the seam at the front and the seam at the back matched in length. Below you see the sleeve in the middle, the front piece on the left, and the back piece on the right. Together, they form half of the sweater.

I also checked if the side seams of the front and back pieces were the same length.

It looked good enough. Time to put together a new sweater.

Making a New Sweater

You can now use the drawn pattern pieces as if you had taken them from a pattern book. Determine how much seam allowance you need and cut them out of your fabric.

Cuffs

The cuffs are missing from the pattern. The cuffs on an old sweater are probably a bit stretched out, which was definitely the case for mine. I could measure the height but not the width. When measuring the height, check if the cuff fabric was doubled or single.

You can calculate the width of the bands by taking about 75% of the sleeve, the bottom of the sweater, or the neckline. You can play around with this a bit depending on the type of fabric you use and how tight you want the cuff to be.

Putting It All Together

Time to remake your favorite sweater! Now everything can be assembled with the overlocker. It’s so fun to see a new sweater come together!

First, I sewed the side seams and the sleeve seams. Then the sleeves could be sewn onto the sweater. The bands go on last.

Basic pattern

YAY! Then it’s done, the remake of your sweater, and you can wear it! I’m super happy that I now have a basic pattern to make this sweater more often. With a fun fabric like these eggs, or maybe a solid French terry with a nice printed or embroidered detail.

Do you have a piece of clothing you’d like to recreate?

See you next time!

Cheers,
Irene

Difficulty level: Intermediate
Time to Complete: Weekend
Used Products:
BERNINA L 460
BERNINA L 460

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  • Jenny Cochrane EditEditing comments on the BERNINA blog is only possible after logging in with a blog user account. Sign up now or create a user account if you do not have one yet.

    It would be most useful to have some tips as to what stitch, foot etc to use.  I really don’t need to be told how to disassemble a garment to make a pattern!

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