INSPIRATION: ALABAMA SWEATER

Like many Alabama Chanin garments, the Alabama Sweater was created because it fit a specific need in my own wardrobe. Years ago, I bought a cashmere sweater that became a well-worn, beloved staple. I wore it and washed it a thousand times; accordingly, it shrank and stretched—and became perfectly mine.

Rather than search the world over for another “just right” sweater, I decided to create a new one using the original sweater—after a year (or two) of love—as a model. The first Alabama Sweater designs we created were made with a double layer of our lightweight organic cotton jersey, worked in backstitch reverse appliqué—so they were almost as soft and expensive as actual cashmere.

We have made dozens of versions since then, ranging in style from basic to heavily embellished. It remains one of our most popular styles, year after year, and is now the second pattern in our Build a Wardrobe program.

ALABAMA CHANIN – INSPIRATION: ALABAMA SWEATER

The Alabama Sweater has a wide v-neckline, loose fit through the bust, and a relaxed silhouette. It is a similar style to our A-Line Top/Tunic with a wider, flowing fit overall.

Join the 2016 Build a Wardrobe program here. Share your projects and follow along on our Journal and on social media using the hashtags #buildawardrobe2016 and #theschoolofmaking.

ALABAMA CHANIN – INSPIRATION: ALABAMA SWEATER

OUR DESIGN CHOICES
Fabric – 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey
Fabric color for outer layer – White
Fabric color for inner layer – White
Button Craft thread – White
Textile paint color – Pearl Silver
Stencil – Stars
Technique – Beaded Stars
Beads – Chop beads, bugle beads, and seed beads
Bead color – White
Sequins – White
Knots – Inside
Seams – Inside Felled
Binding stitch – Cretan

ALABAMA CHANIN – INSPIRATION: ALABAMA SWEATER

OUR DESIGN CHOICES
Fabric – 100% organic medium-weight cotton jersey
Fabric color for outer layer – Navy
Fabric color for inner layer – Navy
Button Craft thread – Black #2
Textile paint color – Pearl Charcoal
Stencil – Stars
Technique – Beaded Stars
Bead type – Chop beads, bugle beads, and seed beads
Bead color – Black
Sequins – Black
Knots – Inside

4 comments on “INSPIRATION: ALABAMA SWEATER

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  1. Mary Jane

    I’m curious why you changed from using a double layer of your light-weight jersey in your first creations to using medium-weight in the ones pictured in this post. Do you generally recommend using medium weight for appliquéd and embellished garments that have two layers?

    Reply
    1. Alabama

      Hi Mary Jane,

      While the original Alabama Sweater was modeled after a cashmere sweater, it is a versatile garment that is comfortable in both lightweight and medium-weight jersey. The different fabric weights each give the garment a different drape and weight. The lightweight fabric has a more delicate hand, but it is durable enough to be used in lightly embellished garments.

      The beauty of creating your own garments is that you can make these decisions for yourself based on your lifestyle and wardrobe needs. As with any of our garments, we encourage you to find what fits you best and is most comfortable to you.

      Happy sewing!

      Reply
  2. Georgia Pearson

    Hi Emily , I would love to have the Alabama Sweater without being in the build a wardrobe club Is it possible to get just that one sweater ? G.

    Reply