crazyquilter's projects
Crochet trimmed refashioned cardigan
September 21, 2018
October 3, 2018
Project info
Crochet trimmed refashioned cardigan
Hooks & yarn
2.25 mm (B)
Reclaimed idaisy olive cotton/acrylic
955 yards in stash
Another Season
November 4, 2015
Reclaimed Ivy Crew Rust Cotton
2310 yards in stash
Rust/Burnt Orange
Reclaimed Avenue Khaki Cotton Blend
1406 yards in stash
Another Season
October 2, 2015
Mystery stranded three color yarn
93 grams in stash
Thrift store
January 19, 2017
Aunt Lydia's Classic Crochet (Size 10)
350 yards in stash
thrift store
July 19, 2018
Bernat Handicrafter Crochet Thread Solids Size 5
371 yards in stash
OMC Thrift Store
February 8, 2018
J&P Coats Pearl Cotton 5 Boilfast
25 yards in stash

I knew when I saw the lovely crochet trimmed cardigans made with long sleeved t-shirts on my Facebook group that I had to try one of my own. The cardis that inspired me were all made from print tees, so I was on a mission to find one at a thrift store. So far no luck. I’m still searching. In the meantime I decided to use a striped shirt I have two of thinking that I can make a sash to match. It took a couple of days to locate both shirts since they weren’t in the same storage container.

About 9:30 one night I decided no better time than the present to get started. I cut straight up the center and cut off the neck trim. Then I rounded the corners of the neckline. The inspiration sweaters have a shorter back tapered from the side seam to the front points, so that is what I did. I cut 3.5” from the back and tapered to the front edges.

Of course at this point I was trying it on. I liked the hem edge and trimmed a bit more off the neckline. The cut off portion was laying there, so I draped it around my neck wondering what the sash/scarf I was planning to cut from the other skirt would look like. Hmm… this piece made a great neckline with its taper. I wondered if it might work to sew it to the cardigan and set about pinning it on. Too bad. It was about a foot too short. Wait a minute, what if I leave six inches on each side and fill that with crochet? After all the inspiration garments all have crochet all down the front. Out came the pins and I tried again. This could work!

Next day I repinned evenly and tried it on. I liked it, but that was all I accomplished that day.

The maker of the inspiration cardis attached her crochet by chaining a long foundation, crocheting a few rows and sewing it on before continuing to crochet. Now I do not like long crochet foundation chains at all. I don’t like them even after learning forward loop chain which makes them easier and neater. My longest to date has been well under a foot and this was going all around the bottom of the cardi plus a foot on the front. I wracked my brain for another way to do it. I knew that I could try crocheting directly into the edge of the fabric, but I didn’t see that being very neat. The same thing for buttonhole stitch embroidered over the edge. I’ve seen that done and am not crazy about the results. Finally, right before I went to sleep, I wondered if a chain stitch embroidered about 1/2” from the edge might work. The next morning I tried a sample. It looked great.

My original vision for yarn and thread colors was to use brights or maybe teals. My heart pincushion was laying on the cardi as I was pinning and I loved the look of the button colors with the stripes. These colors would work much better in my wardrobe too making the cardi much more versatile. While I was picking the yarns, I decided to add in green.

A couple of days later I finally changed the thread in my serger to black and serged the collar piece on. I also serged all around the cut edges. I got started embroidering the chain stitching. I stripped out one of the yarn strands from the khaki cotton blend and used it doubled. The chain stitching wasn’t a lot of fun, but I finally finished it. It got easier with more practice and the help of my grandma’s thimble.

I did sc as the first row using the same khaki yarn as I embroidered the chain stitching with. A few of the chain stitches I had sewn were longer than the others. I did two sc’s in those to keep the edge even. I did increases around the front points to keep them laying flat.

Row 2 is dc in rust. I did 2dc, 1dc, 2dc increases in the points.

Row 3 is hdc in the Bernat Handicrafter size 5 acrylic again increasing around the points to keep them flat.

For row 4 I was wanting some texture. I tried out several things finally deciding on bobbles in green with 4 sc between each bobble. I’ve only done a few bobbles before, so I had to look them up. By the time I got to the side seams, I was considering leaving them off the back. I could only do eight or so before I had to set it down for a break because they were hurting my hand. I finally decided that I wasn’t in any hurry and should just plug away at them. I’m so glad I did. I think they really add to the look of the trim. Plus, with all the practice they actually got easier to do.

Row 5 is the three stranded yarn. I did a pattern of 3sc, 2dc, centering the dc’s over the center two of the four sc’s in the previous row. Around the point I did an increase in three of the dc sections so I would have 3dc’s instead of two.

Since I wanted more of the three colored yarn to show, on row 6 I did sc into the back loop only in the brown #10 cotton. When I got to the first dc, I did a ch2 and sc into the next dc to keep the curvy edge going. Around the point I just did the same thing with all three dc’s.

My original notion was to keep crocheting until I got to the edge of the front band. I am there, so I guess this will finish this part of the cardi.

I plan to go back and weave in some black thread through the rust portion under one, over two. I tried several colors and i like the black the best as it ties in the black stripes. Now if I can just find the thread I used. I had a single doll shoe that was unfinished in my drawer and wove through the ends of that. If not, I’m sure I’ll find something else.

If you’ve read this far, you must be just as interested in the design process as I am. This is the first time I’ve added crochet trim to fabric, so I thought it might be interesting to record the process. I absolutely love how it looks, so I’m betting it won’t be my only make of this new-to-me method.


I finally got off my duff and finished the cardi yesterday. I wove the black size 5 pearl cotton through the orange section, under one and over two. I used four strands of the thread.

Then I wove all the ends in and sewed the short ends of the crochet to the fabric.

Now I need to decide about the belt/sash that I want. I got up this morning and did some photoshopping to help me figure out what I want.

viewed 12 times
September 21, 2018
October 3, 2018
About this pattern
Personal pattern (not in Ravelry)
About this yarn
by Aunt Lydia's
Thread, size 10
100% Cotton
350 yards / 80 grams

24351 projects

stashed 9679 times

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About this yarn
by J&P Coats
Thread, size 5
100% Cotton
50 yards / 18 grams

43 projects

stashed 44 times

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About this yarn
by Bernat
Thread, size 5
100% Acrylic
371 yards / 85 grams

1109 projects

stashed 1076 times

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  • Project created: September 26, 2018
  • Updated: October 4, 2018
  • Progress updates: 2 updates