It’s SWEATER WEATHER!!! Do you get excited about cold weather? I’m not sure if I love the cold, but I sure do love sewing warm outfits, like this sweater knit dress. You already know I’m a huge fan of knit fabrics. So, get ready for all the cold weather knit garments.


By the way, I’m back on track with sewing 22 patterns from my stash in the year 2022. This is garment #19. I sewed a pair of pajamas with an old pattern, but didn’t write a blog post. I did post a Sew Along Video on my YouTube channel though. So, if you want to sew a pair of pajamas, check out the video HERE. That means I only have 3 more patterns to sew before I meet my goal for 2022. WooHoo!!!


This adorable sweater dress was made using Butterick 6858. There are 5 different views to sew from the pattern – 1 dress, 2 tops, 1 skirt, and 1 pants.

  • View A is a dress with front princess seams, center back seam, gathered-lapped collar, and long sleeves

  • View B is a short top with front princess seams, center back seam, straight lapped collar, and long sleeves

  • View C is a long top with front princess seams, center back seam, gathered lapped collar, front pocket, and long sleeves

  • View D is a skirt with front/back princess seams, and elastic waist

  • View E is a pair of pants with front/back princess seams and elastic waist


The pattern is currently available on the Something Delightful website (sizes 4 – 26), in print and PDF. The company rates the pattern as “Easy,” and I will say that depends. I would disagree slightly because of the collar construction. The instructions would probably be a bit confusing for a new beginner. For that reason, I would rate the pattern, Average, meaning you already have some experience under your belt.


The pattern instructions are straightforward (except collar) and easy to follow. There are 5 pattern pieces needed to sew the dress.


Inside the Garment

Now, let’s take a look at the inside of the garment. I used my Baby Lock Soprano to sew all the main seams. Sewing with sweater knit fabric can be a challenge, so I take extra steps to ensure that I get the results I desire.


First, I set the machine for a narrow zigzag stitch. To do that on my Soprano, I use the digital stitch selector and choose a zigzag stitch. Next, I use the stitch width selector and set it to 0.5mm. Finally, I set the stitch length to 2.5mm and use a ballpoint/jersey needle.


To help prevent the fabric from stretching, I use my walking foot that came with the machine. This presser foot feeds the top layer of fabric through while the machine’s feed dogs feed the bottom layer. This helps to ensure that both layers are even when I’m done stitching.

To finish off the seam allowances, I used my Baby Lock Vibrant Serger. I sewed with a 4-Thread Overlock stitch, as usual, but you can also use a 3-Thread Overlock stitch. 


The wrong side of the fabric is black, so using the same color threads in the serger gave it a really clean look. I like matching my threads to the fabric. And because threading the Vibrant Serger is so easy, I really don’t mind changing the colors often. When I don’t have a matching thread, I just go with something that gives a nice contrast, or a color that’s at least close to the fabric.


Because I used a sweater knit and there are several layers and gathering on the collar, there was quite a bit of bulk in the front seam allowance. But both the Soprano and Vibrant sewed through the layers with no problem. I usually slow down when sewing bulky areas.


Fabric Options

The fabric suggestions call for Moderate Stretch Knits with 35% stretch cross grain. Jersey, Interlock, French Terry, and Fleece are listed on the back of the pattern envelope. I used a black and white sweater knit with a diamond pattern. It has a lot of stretch, so I knew it would work well with the pattern. This fabric is super soft against the body and does a great job keeping me warm. I purchased it from Joann Fabrics a long time ago.



Sewing with sweater knit fabric can be intimidating. I understand, but it’s so rewarding when you conquer that fear and sew your first sweater. I created a YouTube Video earlier this year on tips for sewing sweater knits on a serger. But a few of those tips can also be applied when sewing sweater knits on a regular sewing machine. 


Here’s a tip that I always follow when using very stretchy sweater knit: Cut your fabric on a single layer with a rotary cutter. This helps to ensure you get clean cuts.


Another tip: It’s okay to use straight pins to hold your fabric together before sewing, but it’s best to use pattern weights to hold the pattern pieces down onto the fabric. This helps to prevent distorting the fabric when cutting.

Alterations Information

I didn’t make any alterations on the pattern. I cut a size Medium for the entire dress because I wanted a semi-fitted look. However, I ended up taking in ⅜” at the side seams in the bodice area after trying it on and realizing it was too loose.


Notions Information

The only notions suggested are seam binding for Views A and C to secure the gathers on the collar; and 1” elastic for the waistband on Views D and E. I also used seam binding to stabilize the shoulders to prevent them from stretching while wearing the garment.


My Plans for the Garment

The dress is quite versatile. I wore it the day after I made it to a meeting and felt comfortable sitting and walking. It’s definitely good for lunch and dinner dates, or fun outings with the ladies.


If I were to make it again, I would probably lengthen the hem because I’m a midi girl. But I do like the hem on this to wear with boots.

Styling Options

You can go in so many directions on styling this dress. I can see it styled with a blazer and heels for work. It looks good loose or belted. Tall boots, flat boots, high heels, or maybe even fancy sneakers and a fuzzy beanie hat.

Styling Option #1

I styled it loose with a pair of tall boots, drop earrings and a black cuff bracelet. I also wore a slip underneath because the fabric is not 100% opaque. For more warmth, I wore a pair of tights. The boots met the hem, but walking and sitting would definitely expose my skin, and I wanted to stay warm


Styling Option #2

Still keeping it simple, I added a wide belt to define the waist and give it a more fitted look. I remember when I never wore belts over dresses because I didn’t think they looked good on me. Now I love them and want to buy more.


Styling Option #3

For even more warmth and to add a touch of sass, I threw on a faux leather jacket. I think it looks really good with the boots. I purchased this jacket many years ago and I think it’s time to sew an upgrade.


Styling Option #4

Dressing it down, I pulled on a pair of flat boots. This is for when I want the 3 C’s – casual, comfortable, and cute. It would look great with the black jacket, big hoop earrings, and a crossbody bag.


How would you wear the garment?

Would you sew this dress? Do you have the pattern? What type of fabric would you use? Talk to me in the comments. I would love to hear from you.

Don't Forget your Sewing Project Checklist

Did you know that I created a Sewing Project Checklist to help you stay organized while sewing your garments? If you missed the video where I shared 3 Steps to Time Saving Sewing for Beginners, check it out to learn how you can streamline your sewing process. Tap the link below to get a Free PDF copy of the Checklist.

Thanks for stopping by,

Remember: When you live in your DESIGN, it is from there that God SHINES! 


Links to Products, Posts & Tutorials

Here are links to products, blog posts, and tutorials mentioned in this post.


This post is sponsored by BABYLOCK!

(DISCLAIMER: This blog post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission on qualifying purchases. All opinions in this post are my own.).)

Get on the list

Join My Community

Join others in my community for early access to new courses, exclusive member benefits, giveaways and updates when new content and products become available.

Get on the list

You Should Share This Blog Post With Your Friends

Leave a Reply

This Post Has 21 Comments

  1. Gwendolyn

    That looks good with your black leather jacket. Good job as always.

  2. Delores

    Love your dress

  3. Tina

    I love sewing with sweater knits! I sewed up a sweater dress last week and a poncho today. I’ve not been sewing very long, but I started sewing with knits, so I’m very comfortable with them. I prefer knits over wovens. I don’t have this pattern, but I have a lot of plans for cold weather sewing.

    1. Anita Morris

      I love sweater knits, Tina. And I’m looking forward to cold weather sewing too.

  4. Agatha

    I do hope that sweater knits are in my future but I am still a beginner. I love learning from your experiences. Your styling is great as usual.

  5. Carrie

    Classic, Anita! Your taste is impeccable! It is tricky sewing with sweater knits. Thank you for your tips!

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you Carrie! Yes, sweater knits can be tricky. But once you learn, it’s so satisfying.

  6. Carol Reece

    I loved this blog post. No, I don’t have the pattern and it probably would not suit my body type. I do use stretch fabrics to sew though. I have an overlocker and a cover stitch machine so
    it does make it easier for me. Thanks for all the content you create. I really enjoy and learn a lot from you.

    1. Debra Everett

      That is a beautiful dress Anita you did a wonderful job awesome looking on you.

    2. Anita Morris

      Awesome, Carol! I love sewing with all knit fabrics. I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog post.

  7. Anne Hyatt

    Thanks Anita! I just sewed my first knits last year: two skirts by Pamela’s Patterns. I don’t have a serger, but with the stretch stitches on my Pfaff, they came out great. I have purchased a couple of knit fabric for tops, but have been nervous about trying them! You are encouraging. I hope to get over my fears; and they’ll probably work out great just like the skirts did!

    1. Anita Morris

      Oh Anne, you can do it. I practice on scrap pieces of fabric whenever I’m trying something new. Practice for as long as you need, then cut into that fabric. We really do learn from our mistakes too.

  8. Marita

    Not a dress for me because of the collar. I can’t bear collars like that.
    I do have a nice vibrant red in my stash and a model in an Ottobre from some years ago, with raglan sleeves and a square neckline. It’s been on my to do list since I bought the fabric, but haven’t had the energy to sew it yet.
    I only have an old Pfaff sewing machine but it has stitches for stretch, double transport, and a foot to sew a pretend overlock stitch. Should really finally sew this.

  9. Henrietta

    When you say cut sweater knitting a single layer do you mean to flip.the pattern piece over while the fabric is lying open flat without a fold?
    I’ve never attempted knits for fear of touch stretching.
    Thank you,

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Henrietta! Yes, that’s exactly what I mean. You get a more accurate cut that way if your sweater fabric is either very stretchy or bulky.