I never thought I would be reviewing a long oversized cardigan. But lately I’m feeling the need to curl up on my couch in the most comfortable clothing possible. Sundays are my lounge days, so here I am wearing a typical Sunday outfit: leggings or thights, over the knee socks, long t-shirt dress and a cosy cardigan. *love*

So, when I read Lisa’s call for pattern reviewers for her new Opal cardigan, I jumped upon the opportunity. I mean, oversized, long and knits. That sounds very comfortable to me!
After making the Onyx shirt, I was also pretty sure that this pattern would be top notch in terms of drafting, so I got to it.

opal cardigan review 14

First: let’s check out the pattern!

The Opal cardigan is a PDF pattern, that comes with a copy shop version too. I don’t mind taping pattern while watching Gossip Girl or Project Runway, so I went with the print-at-home version. Everything lined up perfectly, so I was happily taping away!

Opal is described as a cardigan with a relaxed fit and dropped shoulders. It comes with 2 sleeve lengths, 3 hem lengths and 2 types of pockets, designed to work with the different lengths. Front openings and neckline are finished with bands. The sleeves have wide cuffs and the hem is finished using a turn and stitch method.

opal cardigan review linedrawing

I decided on using a bulky knit I’ve bought in Paris last November. There was one problem: I couldn’t decide which side of the fabric I prefered. So I decided to make the cardigan reversible. This also meant all instructions were put aside. I read through them and I can say, as always, Lisa’s instructions are on point and guide you through all the steps necessary to complete a cosy cardigan. I must warn you though, since I made a reversible cardigan, this post is picture heavy!

opal cardigan review 12 opal cardigan review 13 opal cardigan review 5 opal cardigan review 4

  • Pattern: Paprika Patterns – Opal Cardigan
  • Fabric: Les Etoffes du Sentier, Paris –  wool knit, €30/metres
  • Size: 3
  • Version: B, medium length with long length sleeves, no pockets.

opal cardigan review 3 opal cardigan review 2
opal cardigan review 10

opal cardigan review 11

Alterations + Construction
  • I altered the neckline into a V-shape. I don’t like round necklines on me. I simply connected the shoulder seam to notch A on the front (Stéphanie tried it and I loved the look on her)
  • I cut out all pattern pieces single layer to save on fabric; I plan on using it for other items too.
  • Even though I picked length B, which hits Lisa on the mid-thigh, I’m quite shorter so ended up with a knee-length version. Which was exactly what I wanted! I’m 5’3″ on a good day, so if you are equally short and want a shorter cardigan, you will need to adapt your pattern pieces!
  • Since my cardigan was going to be reversible. I sewed all seams on the overlocker and topstitched them down using a zigzag stitch. I tested it out on a scrap first and really loved the look. Below are some detail shots of those seams.

opal cardigan review detail 2   opal cardigan review detail 1

  • I finished the neckline and front with one continious piece of binding. I used the selvedge of the fabric on the “white” side of the fabric and the other side on the darker side. This added some embellishment to the lighter side.

opal cardigan review detail 4   opal cardigan review detail 3

  • The hem was finished using the overlocker. You can hardly see it but it’s finished.
  • Since it was reversible, I omitted the pockets.  I love pockets in my cardigan, but a set on each side would have been way too bulky!

opal cardigan review 1 opal cardigan review 6 opal cardigan review 7 opal cardigan review 8

Last weekend I wore it to a weekend with friends and upon arrival the house we’ve rented was SO cold I was very happy to have packed my Opal! Since it’s a wool fabric, it’s super warm and it made for perfect layering over all of my other sweaters. It also doubled as a robe over my pajamas. No double packing for me 🙂

Next time, I might size down a bit or use a slinkier fabric for a less bulky look, but with the purpose in mind, this cardigan really rocks!


PS: looking for the perfect fabric for your Opal cardigan? Lisa has teamed up with Gorgeous Fabrics and if you order through their sweater knit section (only full-priced fabrics) you get a 20% discount! The code is PAPRIKA20 and it lasts until March 15th!


*Disclaimer: I received this pattern for free in exchange for a review. All opinions and views are my own!


Want more like this? Subscribe to the happy mail to stay in touch! 

  • kalimak

    It’s lovely. So cozy! I completely understand why you couldn’t decide between the two sides of the fabric.

    If I haven’t de-lurked yet (gah, can’t remember!) let me say hi. I’ve been enjoying your fantastic blog for a while now, Hanne, having read through it backwards almost in its entirety. I love your sewing, obviously, but also your enthusiasm and how you reach out to fellow sewists. Thank you for that!

    • kalimak

      Oh, I believe I said hi on Instagram, but not yet on the blog!

      • You did say hi on Instagram! Thank you so much for you kind words, they truly made my day!
        Great to hear that people read older posts too!

        • kalimak

          I really love it when I get so engrossed in a blog I want to read back to get a sense of a story (well, one developing in reverse). I had a great time reading through your older posts and looking at your projects and the ideas you shared. You’ve offered some great tips about work/life balance, getting organized, and developing a helpful outlook on life.

          Your posts about the Hazel dresses continue to make me smile when I think about them — because that’s how I feel about that pattern, too! I made two Hazels last summer, in quick succession. And I suspect I might revisit the Hazel next summer if the right fabric crops up.

          Cheers! Looking forward to future posts 🙂

  • What a great idea to make a reversible version. It looks great.