Finished Project · Sewing

Sewing for the Season: Rosy Fall Cowl

I promised earlier this week that I was going to post something in “Cashmere Rose”. Well, here it is! My new Renfrew cowl! From what I can tell, this pink is a little too light to truly be “Cashmere Rose”, but that’s okay with me. After all: “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Also, I’m sorry if a half-finished version of this post already popped into your reader or showed up on Twitter.  My daughter was curious what I was writing, and I pulled her into my lap to show her the pictures. I guess I let her have a bit too much freedom with my computer because I couldn’t even believe my eyes when she somehow managed to hit publish!

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

I started planning my next Mood Sewing Network make back in August. I picked out one of Mood’s fun Liberty of London prints. I downloaded a pattern for a cute, sleeveless BurdaStyle dress. I printed the pattern out and taped it together.  I cut out my size and made a few flat-pattern adjustments. Then, just as I was getting ready to make a muslin, the weather shifted here in Seattle and fall appeared. With the chill in the air, I lost all motivation to make a cute summer dress. Instead I wanted something cozy.

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

While I stalled, debating whether a project counts as an unfinished object (UFO) if the pattern is prepared but the fabric is left uncut, I kept eyeing a pink cotton jersey from Mood that I’d picked out a few months back (no longer available online – sorry! – but check out this one and this one and this one instead). It looked so cozy, and I kept imagining it as a cowl.  As the fall weather continued, that imaginary pink cowl became a cowl I wanted to wear right that moment. So, I put aside all of the work I’d already done to prepare the dress pattern and grabbed my tried-and-true (TNT) cowl-neck top pattern: the Sewaholic Renfrew.

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

Ever since making my first cowl-neck Renfrew back in 2011, I always knew I’d make more. My second one was made in 2013 during my maternity sewing, and, unfortunately, that one hasn’t gotten much wear since that winter given all of the excess fabric it has in the tummy area. But, it was very loved back then. This pink version is my third. Given that it’s now 2015, it seems I’m on an every-other-year schedule for making these cowls!  And, I have to admit that I think this one is my favorite!

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

I made the pattern as shown in view C, only I doubled the height of the waistband to give it a bit of a tunic feel. I really like the length! I almost added the length into the top itself, leaving the waistband as designed, but I worried the waistband would ride up, leading to a baggy top instead of a tunic.

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

This top’s dirty little secret is the neckband topstitching. I forgot to check my machine’s tension before topstitching the neckline, and after I was finished I immediately realized my mistake when I saw all of the skipped stitches.  I tried unpicking the topstitching, only to realize that I was stretching out the neckline. A stretched out neckline seemed worse than a bit of wonky topstitching, so I decided to just stitch over the original topstitching with the correct tension. The second row of topstitching dominates, which means that overall everything looks okay, but I’m thankful that the cowl neck covers the topstitching up for the most part. Lesson learned though: I will not launch right into topstitching without first testing my machine’s settings on a scrap of fabric! All of the rest of the interior seams were finished on my serger.

Sew Well - Cowl-neck Renfrew in #moodfabrics pink cotton jersey

Even though it was hard for me to set aside my original plans, I’m so happy that I decided to make this cowl instead.  I feel great in it, and it fits right into my life, whether I’m out and about or chasing my daughter around the house. I think this cowl is going to get a lot of wear until the weather warms up again!

This post can also be found on Mood Sewing Network. I used my MSN allowance towards the purchase of the fabric.

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5 thoughts on “Sewing for the Season: Rosy Fall Cowl

  1. Amy, i love your Renfrew! The color is just divine, the cowl drapes beautifully and your extended lower band is brilliant! And your daughter, my goodness, such a little beauty! Her coloring is so pretty!

  2. I love your top! I’ve made a half dozen of these and I’ve never topstitched the neckband, except for the very first shirt I made with the crew neck. I don’t think it’s necessary and it definitely can stretch everything out.

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