DIY Shawl Collar Cardigan Tutorial


Shawl Cardigan Pattern Tutorial By Justine Of sew Country Chick

Hello readers! In my effort to stay on my ready to wear clothing fast, I ‘ve been making more everyday clothes. Last week I made my own workout outfit, and this week we have a comfy oversized sweater a style you have probably seen when out shopping. I show the examples below from Anthropologie. I love the look of high heeled boots and jeans with this sweater for our mild winter days here. Casual but still stylish.

I’m going to show you how to draft your own pattern for it.

It’s a shawl collar cardigan with a front hem which sweeps up from the center. This pattern is really quite simple to draft. It’s just triangles! If the bottom hem didn’t sweep up, it would be even simpler. If you would like to keep things REALLY easy and are new to making your own patterns, you can always omit the curved hem and just make it square. But of couse, it’s the little details that take a pattern from boring to fashionable.Anthrosweaters

From my Spring 2014 fashion trends board on Pinterest. Sweaters by Anthroplogie.

 My goal this year is to post at least one fashion oriented sewing tutorial every month. I make my own patterns, and since I have just started learning how to use Illustrator,but have miles to learn,I’m enjoying creating my tutorials even more. I’ve been writing for the Sewing Rabbitt Team on the Me Sew Crazy blog and it’s just the motivation I need to make more fashion tutorial projects. This post was shared there last month.


I love this Aztec or Navajo print fabric. I buy most of my fabric in the Los Angeles fabric district, about an hour and fifteen minutes away from our little farm. I always find something very unique and get great deals. Often, I don’t buy enough. But this time I bought two and a half yards, the exact amount I needed to make this design. cardigan3This sweater would also be nice in a solid knit or even in sweatshirt fabric.cardigan4

The sleeves and neck band are rectangles that have been folded and ironed. The raw edges are then sewn to the raw edges of the neck and the sleeves. It’s a very simple way ot finish a knit garment. This style short sleeved sweater has been very popular this season. I have been wanting one, so figured I would just make my own! Often, I never can find a pattern for current styles I want to make so I’ve decided to just start making my own and sharing the tutorials.CardiganBack

I love my cactus plants. They were itty bitty babies a few years ago, believe it or not! Below I will explain how to make the pattern first, then I will show you how to put it together.cardigan.1Both the front and back pieces should be 12 inches wide and 32 inches long.

On the front piece  you will draw a mark 4 inches from the top neck edge and then make another notch 11 inches down from that edge on the right hand line , the center line of the sweater. You will then draw a nice neckline curve.

On the center from below the neckline curve, measure up 6 inches from the bottom.Draw a hemline curve , connecting to the bottom hem opposite edge, straightening out until the side seam.

On what will be the side seam, the left line on the diagram above, mark down 11 inches from the top edge to create the armhole notch.

cardigan.2For the back piece, which will have a center fold, measure down from the center fold 1 inch and mark the neckline corner. On the upper edge of the center, measure over 4 inches to mark the neck, shoulder intersection. Now draw in your neckline.

On the side seam edge,  measure down 11 inches from the top and mark a notch for the bottom of the armhole.

That’s it for the back! I told you this was an easy pattern. On to the neckband and sleeves….


cardigan.3The neckband pieces will be 36 inches long and 11 inches wide. Fold the piece in half lengthwise and mark 2.5 inches up on the edges. Draw the curve like above. This piece gets sewn to the center front of the sweater so the curves have to go together. Here is an example: The neckband will be folded in half and the raw edges will be sewn to the center front.

IMG_4088cardigan.4The sleeve pattern is a rectangle 8 inches wide by 23 inches long. It will be sewn together at the edges, then folded and ironed. Then sewn into  he armhole after the side seams are sewn.

Cutting the fabric:

Cut two front pieces

one back piece on fold

two seleeves

2 neckbands

Sewing sweater:

See below

cardigan5cardigan6Shawl Collar Cardigan Pattern Tutorial By Justiine Of Sew Country Chick

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  1. says

    This is such a great tutorial, I can’t wait to try it out! I was just thinking today that my cardigans are all looking a bit the worse for wear so I’ll be trying this soon. Thank you!

  2. says

    Justine, this is so cute! The fabric you chose and the pattern are perfect. I hope I can get some time to make this soon. Thanks for sharing this tutorial. I’ll definitely be pinning this!
    Have a wonderful week,
    The Renegade Seamstress

  3. Judy says

    The cardi is adorable.. Love,love the fabric you chose..Looks great on you.. Happy sewing and best wishes on your RTW fast.. SO happy that you are doing the tutorials.. Can’t wait to see the next one.. Happy sewing.

  4. says

    This is brilliant!!! Great tutorial! I have a very ethnic fabric waiting to become something pretty, and if there is enough of it, I will be making just this! Thank you so much, Justine!

  5. Joan says

    I’m 5’7″ and wear size 10-12. I know you’re teeny. Should I add inches to the pattern? I have some great Kente cloth and have been wondering what to do with it. Now I know!

    • says

      Hi Joan. My mom has been wearing mine and she’s a size 14. I think I would make mine smaller next time. I can’t remember how wide my finished cardigan is at the hip. As long as its a few inches wider than your hip you are fine.

  6. Renee Vrieling says

    Love it! I hope I can find some nice fabric to make this, thanks!

  7. Anita Winningham says

    If possible could you tell me what size you make your clothes? You look to be a small woman and I’m probably a large. It would be easier to make my own pattern if I know your size.

  8. Dianne says

    love this cardigan, actually have seen a lot of patterns I like

    but I was wondering u said u had 21/2 yrds of material , just enough, but what was width of it’

    do u think it could be made in fleece as would be great for our cool falls
    sure enjoy your site