The Wooly Coppélia

Happy New Year, Peeps!  Everyone enjoy their holidays? Hope so!  My last two weeks have been so full of awesome friends and family that my empty apartment is feeling a wee lonely this week.  But I normally love my space and my solitude so I’m sure the blue feelings won’t last!  I’m just catching up on my blog reading now and I am loving all of your 2013 round-up posts and 2014 plans!  I’ll be adding my own to the collection shortly but am going to quickly post my last wardrobe contribution from 2013.  I started this post in November so it will be good to finally hit publish!

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Back with another Coppelia wrap!  Think that I enjoy the pattern?!  I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as I already discussed the pattern at length in this post.  Sadly, I have no pretty pictures of the city to show you this time around!  I was talking quite a bit about taking blog pictures with Andrea, Kristin and Gillian this weekend (another fun meet-up that I will talk more about in my 2013 round-up) and have some tentative plans to improve on this front.  Will be fun to try at the very least!


But back to the coppelia!  This one is made from a really lovely wool jersey that I picked up at Kings Textiles.  I’ve never worked with wool jersey but having been itching to (could not resist the wool-related pun) since Lauren wrote about it with her Lady Skater.  As you all know, I’m also a knitter and so have a major love affair going on with wool.  Is there a better fibre out there? Keeps you warm, keeps you cool.  Really, I could go on but I’ll spare you all the gushing!

2013-12-05 16.25.222013-12-05 16.26.01I wanted to lengthen the pattern even more than I did the last time around (where I added two inches) but I was limited in the fabric department.  My awesome wool jersey was not he cheapest fabric so I bought the very minimum.  I could squeeze an extra three inches to the bottom if I shortened the sleeves, which is what I clearly did.  In the end, I think this is a workable length and I love the 3/4 length sleeves!  I also went down a size (this version is an XS, which should give you some indication of the generous sizing on this pattern!) as I found the last version a wee loose.  What I didn’t consider was that this wool jersey has a lot less recovery than the mystery blend I used before.  So despite going down a size, this one is loose!  It’s not really an issue but it means that I have to take care to wrap it tightly to avoid any gaping at the neck.  I also added about three inches in length at each end on the straps.  I wanted some flexibility in where I tie this sucker!  


“Picks up cat hair and lint like it’s its job!”

To quote Sallie, this fabric picks up hair like it’s its job, which leads to a giant grrrrrr!!!! moment every time I put this sucker on.  Covered in hair that is a total bitch to remove!  When you live with two cats, you learn to live with the layer of pet hair that tends to decorate everything you own but every once in awhile, it will drive me completely nuts.  This would apparently be such a moment!

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cozy jazz hands!

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my aching back!

I don’t often blog about knitting accessories as that would get out of hand quickly.  However, I took the photos of these babies for my Ravelry project page while I had a friend with a camera in her hand so have decided to include them.  Why?  Cause I love them!  I made them with my favourite winter accessory yarn (Blue Sky Alpaca Suri Merino).  It is seriously the most delicious yarn you will ever encounter (soft, drapey and so friggin’ warm) but it has a fairly strong halo, which makes these mitts look a wee furry!  An appropriate match with the furry wrap, would you not agree?


And we’re done.

And on that note, good-bye 2013!  I’ll be back shortly with some thoughts on the past year and what I’m planning for 2014.  In the meantime, stay warm, fellow Torontonians!  It’s a wee chilly and a lot icy out there!  It’s supposed to be -35 this evening so a good time to stay in and knit and/or sew!  I think we’ve been spoiled for the last couple of years as this winter feels brutal!  For those of you enjoying some sunshine… probably best if I kept my thoughts to myself! Sara


Cold, cold Coppélia

cold frontBack again!  I’d like to blame the length of time between posts on my continuing picture taking dilemma but in reality, I just haven’t had much time for knitting or sewing lately.  My Sewaholic Minoru has been in progress for over a month!  These days when I do have time to sew, I’m turning to the instant gratification projects…  KNITS!  Gillian, I do think your love of knits is contagious!  So, onwards with some thoughts on the Coppélia wrap from Papercut Patterns.

monkey arms

Monkey arms?

I feel like I should add a quick disclaimer before you get into the pictures!  It’s the end of November in Toronto, people.  Meaning it’s COLD!!!  I really, really need to solve my indoor photo shoot problems ASAP as I don’t think I will be doing any more of these outside!  The rooftop garden at work that is my usual photo taking spot is even locked up and inaccessible during the winter!  In the five years that I have worked here, I had no idea that you couldn’t go up all year.  Why did I not know this?  Cause in five years, I have never been tempted to visit the garden cause it’s COLD!  So…  you’re going to see some funny faces and awkward poses and I am absolutely blaming the cold.  Nothing at all to do my awkward self in front of a camera…!

cold but trying to smile

Trying to smile while shivering…

Back to the pattern.  All is all, I think I really like this make!  Let’s start with the small changes I did make, shall we.  I added two inches of length to the body.  Sadly, this was a last minute change so instead of properly modifying the pattern as Lauren did, I just added two inches to the bottom when I was cutting it.  Big mistake!  The bottom band and the neck band need to meet at the bottom corner of each front piece so the small “side” needs to be the length it is drafted as.  Make sense?  Not at all!  But it will if you are making this!  To fix this, I pulled out my French curve and cut out a bit from the curved neckline so it was no big deal.  The moral of this story is that do as Lauren did to lengthen the pattern and don’t be lazy as I was!

normal 1 normal 2

The other problem I encountered with my last minute change was that I didn’t quite have enough fabric!  This meant I had to shorten the sleeves by two inches (which turned out perfectly so yay!).  It also meant that I couldn’t cut the bottom band out in two pieces as recommended.  I solved this by cutting three pieces and stitching them together.  Seemed fine until I first tried this on and saw the lovely seam that is front and centre on the bottom band!  Fortunately, that seems to be hidden by the bow when the wrap is tied!  Unfortunately, it means this wrap needs to be tied at the front and not off to the side as I might prefer under normal circumstances.  Not a huge deal in any case.

looking back looking down

The other small change I made was to sew on the neckband as Lauren described.  I started at the centre back and just stretched the neck band as I attached it to the body of the cardigan.  Sewing it on this way meant that I had an extra 3 inches on either end!  Keep in mind that I added the two inches of length to the cardigan without adding any additional length to the neckband pieces.  This leaves things looking slightly puckered when it’s laying down on a flat surface but it helped keep the neck gappage to a minimum.  I still find the neckline gapes a little so I can easily imagine how terrible the fit would be had I not done this!  Overall, the fit of this is arguably not perfect but in a casual layering piece like this, I just don’t care!

back hunched

Cold! Hunched shoulders!

So, will I made this again?  Absolutely!  In fact, I have two versions planned right away!  I have a lovely wool jersey that I am going to use to make another wrap version.  I’m planning on adding an additional two inches in length as I still find this one a little on the short side.  I’m also going to cut the shoulders and bust in a smaller size.  Again, the extra space in this one doesn’t bother me but I think I would prefer a slightly closer fit up top.  I also have some blue jersey that I am going to use to make a pullover…  yes, very much like this awesome one that Rachel made this month!

stupid face

Anne said “Do something!”. And so I did….

extra chins

And then I decided that I should be generous and let you see more chins!

So, what do you think?  Tempted to give this pattern a try?  I say do!  And if you need a bit more convincing then check out these versions (this, this and this!).