Fitting The New Fraser Cardigan

The New Fraser Cardigan from Love Notions is here! Buy the pattern now and sew up your own in time for the new season of Outlander coming on March 6! Be sure to scroll to the end for the pattern link and an extra discount coupon from me! The pattern is on sale all week for $9. (1/24/22-1/30/22)

I will be totally honest here, I have never worn a Cocoon style cardigan before. I always felt like they never fit me correctly and always looked a tad frumpy on me. This is what I love about being a Love Notions Ambassador, when testing new patterns, I am often pushed out of my comfort zone when it comes to styles. And I will also admit that I NEEDED to test this pattern since my family tree includes MacKenzies and Frasers(all you Outlander fans will understand that!)

Rather than just simply review this new pattern and give you all the details, I figured I would pass on my fitting tips for this cardigan. I hope you find them helpful, especially if you’re a “petite pear” like me!

The Details

Like all new Love Notions patterns, the Fraser Cardigan is available in sizes XS-5X. There is a full bust option included. That is one of the options that I LOVE about Love Notions patterns. I always use the full bust front pieces and it always helps me to get a great fit.

The Fraser can be made plain or with a hood. I did not sew up any hooded versions (just because I’m not a big fan of hoods). It can be made with cuffs or plain hemmed sleeves. And the best feature of all-POCKETS!!! These pockets are awesome- they’re big enough for your phone! During the testing process, a band was added to the top edge of the pocket to prevent the pockets from flopping open. This is another reason I just love sewing Love Notions patterns. The testers’ comments , input and opinions are truly taken into consideration.

Sizing and Fit

For the Fraser cardigan it is important to use your hip measurement to get the correct fit. At the moment I am between an XL and a 2X for my bust. Since my full bust is 4″ more than my upper bust, I used the size LX for the neckline, shoulders, arms and bust of this pattern. My hips fall into the 2X range. Since the pattern recommends using your hip measurement, I graded out to the 2X from the waist down.

Do not get confused by the finished garment measurement for the hip! You will see that the finished hip measurement is smaller than the hip measurements on the size chart. This is because it is a Cocoon style. Note that the cardigan does NOT meet at the hip. It is an open style. If you select and make a size according to the finished measurements of the hip, your cardigan will be too big.

I am only 5 feet tall. I often don’t shorten sweaters and tops because I like them a tad longer. With a cocoon style, I think it is important to get the right proportion so it is more flattering. Love Notions patterns are drafted for 5’5″. It is suggested that you subtract/add 1/2″ for each inch you are shorter/taller than the drafted height. That means I would subtract 2.5″. For my first final version (ivory) I only shortened the length by 2″, for my black/tan version I shortened it the full 2.5″. I prefer the shorter length.

Something to keep in mind when shortening the length of the cardigan is the height of the pocket. I shortened the height of my pocket by 1″ on the ivory version and 2″ off the black/tan version. I simply trimmed it at the top of the pocket before attaching the pocket band. I prefer the size of the pockets on version 2(black) as I feel the pockets more comfortable to use.

Many times, when we shorten(or lengthen) garments, we forget about the pockets. On this cardigan, I feel it’s really important. Keep in mind if you have longer or shorter arms as well.

Speaking of arms, I also shortened my sleeves. This is a typical adjustment for me. I typically shorten all sleeves 1 1/2″. That is what I did on the ivory version. You can see the sleeves on my black/tan version are a tad shorter, as I shortened them 2″. In addition I shortened the cuffs on the black/tan version as well. I did this since the black sweater knit was a much heavier knit.

When grading between sizes on this cardigan, make sure to use the pocket in the size you used at the hip. For me, that meant using the 2X pocket piece. When cutting the bands, I used the XL for the bands, except for the side seams of the main and back bands, since I graded out to the 2X at the hip.

Fabrics

The Fraser Cardigan is designed for light to medium weight knit fabrics with at least 25% 2 way stretch. Fabrics like French Terry, Ponte, cotton lycra, sweater knit, jersey blends and double brushed poly will all work with this pattern. Keep in mind that the look and fit will be different with different types of fabrics. If using a lighter weight fabric you may want to size down.

I sewed my two final versions seen above in sweater knits. Both had good stretch and recovery. I made one of my tester versions in a very stable knit similar to Ponte. Here are a few tester photos of that version. Note there is not a band on this pocket so you can see that is falls open.

TIP: If using a knit with a lot of stretch and not great recovery- be very careful when handling the bands. They WILL stretch out very easily!!

Sew Mary Mac’s Tips for Sewing a Fraser Cardigan

  • When printing/tracing your pattern pieces, print/trace 2 of the main band. This will make it much easier when you are laying out/cutting your fabric.
  • After cutting out your band pieces, double check them! The main band is a very long piece and can easily wind up a tad too long. Check them and adjust if needed.
  • Try to handle your band pieces as little as possible. Due to their length and depending on your fabric, they can become stretched out very easily. When carrying them to/from iron and machine always use 2 hands to handle them.
  • When sewing the bands to the cardigan, I would use your regular sewing machine- especially if your fabric has a lot of stretch and not a ton of recovery.

Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Mary Anne 🙂

Follow me over on Instagram to to see all of my makes! @sewmarymac

You can purchase the Fraser Cardigan pattern HERE. This is my affiliate link. It costs you nothing to purchase from this link, it just helps fund my fabric addiction(and helps me to test more patterns).

Use my coupon code MARYMAC10 for an additional 10% off (yes even off the sale price!)

Fabrics featured in this blog post were purchased by me.

As a Love Notions Ambassador this pattern was given to me during the testing process. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Fabrics Resources

My tester versions were both made with fabrics I had in my stash. I often stock up on fabrics when I see a good sale. That was the case with both of the fabrics I used for my Frasers.

The ivory cable sweater knit was purchased from my local Joann’s Fabrics back in the fall of 2021. As of 1/23/22, it was available online in some colors. Click HERE to check.

The Black/Oatmeal “Skimo” sweater knit is from Mily May Fabrics. As of 1/23/22 this is available in the mustard color way on sale for just $4.25 per yard! Click HERE to check.

These online fabric shops have a great selection of knit fabrics that would be perfect for the Fraser Cardigan.

Stylemaker Fabrics– sweater knits and French Terry

Surge Fabrics– sweater knits

Raspberry Creek Fabrics- French Terry

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