sewing the Marlo Sweater
Collabs | Fabric

A cozy grandpa-style Marlo Sweater for autumn!

October 8, 2022

The Marlo Sweater exists to make all of your cozy grandpa dreams come true, and it is most certainly doing it for me! I wish I had sewn this pattern as soon as I received the fabric, but instead I put it off for a little while because the pattern felt a little intimidating to me. It felt like the outcome must warrant a pretty detailed or difficult process, and I was a little bit nervous that I would mess it up somehow. It turns out that no matter how long you’ve been sewing, things will still seem a little bit out of reach from time to time.

If you’re doing the same thing and wobbling a bit about getting started with your Marlo Sweater, DON’T! Go pull out that fabric and get started – it took me less than 3.5 hours from start to finish to sew this cutie, and I can’t wait to make a couple more now. I obviously chose the cropped version of the sweater, and I imagine the mid-thigh length would take a bit longer, especially as it features some awesome patch pockets. The pattern also offers instruction for an easier and a more advanced option for attaching the neck band to the body of the sweater. For this fabric, a sweater weave which didn’t necessarily hold a press, I felt that the “easier” option was most suited to the fabric. However, if I eventually make a version in a more sweatshirt fabric french terry or fleece, I would definitely choose the more advanced option which features some cleaner finishes and hidden seams. 

For the actual construction of my sweater, I used a stretch stitch on my sewing machine. I realized about halfway through that I have some really great Mettler Stretch thread that allows me to get a little enough stretch in my stitches to sew knits with a straight stitch (a rather nice look!), but since I was already halfway through I decided to just keep going as I was. All-purpose thread with a stretch stitch, and seams finished on the serger. I keep mauve thread on my serger, which I find goes well with all of my fabrics, so the seams are indeed visible here but not ugly!

This sweater came together surprisingly fast, as knits tend to do. With each step, I wondered what on earth had made this thing seem so scary to me. Then, I figured it out. The buttonholes. I certainly didn’t expect them to be easy, but dang – buttonholes on knit fabrics is HARD! Mine are not beautiful – in fact, one of them I had to do in two separate steps, one of them required three or four separate attempts to get the entire shape of the buttonhole at the right length, and one came out perfectly lovely on the first try. Looking back, I think a hump-jumper would’ve been a valuable tool here, especially for the lowest button. I found my machine struggling to get started, and then due to the difference in height from the start to the middle, the machine got confused and somehow one side of my buttonhole ended up only half the height of the button! All in all, thanks to dark thread on a dark fabric, they’re not so embarrassing that I can’t wear my sweater but SHEESH those gave me a run for my money! I truly think probably ¼ of the entire time I spent on this sweater was dedicated to these buttonholes. The picture below is deceptive – they look too decent!

I’m so happy with how this came out. I have not mastered the art of knitting or crochet – not even the tiniest bit – so chunky knit items are one of the few areas of my closet where I consistently look to ready-to-wear clothing to fill the gaps. I love a good cozy knit sweater, so being able to make this one for myself feels like such an accomplishment! This dark grey is a perfect neutral for my wardrobe, and I have a feeling this sweater and I are about to become besties just as soon as the weather calls for it.

Sweater: handmade by me
Pattern: True Bias – Marlo Sweater
Fabric: Minerva – Dark Grey 100% Cotton Sweater Stretch Knit

Key Ingredients: 
Brother XR9500PRW Sewing Machine 
Brother 1034D Overlocker 
Schmetz Jersey Ballpoint Needles
Dahle 36×48 Self-healing Cutting Mat

Thanks for reading my thoughts on this pattern! The fabric used for this post was provided to me by Minerva in exchange for photos of my original finished garment (seen here!) posted on their website. The Marlo Sweater pattern by True Bias was provided to me as a gift after completing a pattern test for another of their wonderful patterns. All words and opinions expressed throughout this post are my own, as always. Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me justify the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! Happy Sewing!

  • XX Elizabeth

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