Thursday, July 10, 2014

DIY Sessions

There are few things worse than wearing clothing made from heavy, or stuffy materials during the summer that are unsuitable to combat sun and humidity. Luckily, kimono style cardigans are on trend this summer and are light, airy, and super comfortable! From the beach to music festivals, these cardigans are perfect for light coverage from scorching rays or when the sun starts to set. While one can find numerous kimono cardigans for a fairly reasonable price at retailers such as Forever 21, you can make your very own cardigan with only a few items at half the price! Kimono cardigans run anywhere from $16 to $30+ at Forever 21 but might not always have ones that fit your height or body shape. As a shorter shopper, the kimonos on sales at stores tend to be too long. By creating your own cardigan, not only can you customize it to fit your needs, but you get to choose the fabric, which is definitely an added bonus. If you love DIYs, kimono cardigans, fashion on a budget, or all of the above, read on to find out how you can create your own trendy summer essential!

Kimono Cardigan DIY

-light fabric 
-measuring tape
-marking pen
-thread (that closely matches the color of the material)
-sewing machine or sewing needle

You can go to the fabric store to find a higher quality fabric, but if you are on a budget, try stopping by Forever 21 first. I purchased an oversized scarf from Forever 21 for under $10 and found it to be just the right amount for the project. There are a bunch of different designs and colors to choose from that are perfect for the summer!


First, lay out your fabric and fold the longer sides together. Then fold the fabric in half again. Make sure that when you are folding, the wrong side is facing outwards and the good side is facing inward!

                          My Measurements                                                                                  Suggested Measurements

I modified the suggested measurements to best fit my needs. You can adjust the measurements to be longer or shorter depending on the style of kimono you are aiming for. When folded however, the scarf measured 20" across the top, so if you want longer sleeves, you may need to head to the fabric store. Or find a longer scarf!

Using your measurements, take a marking pen (I used a sharpie) to create a guide for cutting.

Once you've cut out the shape of your cardigan, it should look something like this when opened up!

Use pins to help hold the cardigan in place and sew the two upside-down "L"s under the armholes together!

It should look something like this when finished! Don't worry about making it look perfect. These cardigans are so flowy and forgiving that imperfections aren't super noticeable!

Once you've sewn the "L"s, take your scissors and cut straight down the middle of the garment until you reach the top! Important note! Only cut the top layer. This will create the opening of the cardigan.

At the top, measure out 5" on both sides and cut down diagonally to the middle to create two triangles. This part is to add some shape to the neck opening.

All that is left to do is sew all the raw edges! Start with the middle by folding down outwards about a quarter inch twice. Then pin down and sew!

Do the same with the bottom hem, arm holes, and around the neck area!

Almost done! Use an iron to flatten all your hems for a more polished product.

That's it! You're done! You have just created your very own kimono cardigan. Enjoy!

Inspired? I was! Check out this video for more detailed instructions!

I'm thinking of posting more DIY projects and creating a little series. Let me know if this is something you might be interested in seeing!