Pattern Reviews

2 Boyfriend Cardigans for ladies & girls. Love Notions. Easiest shawl collar.

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The Boyfriend Cardigan from Love Notions has a Ladies and a Girls version and they are exactly the same. The difference are the sizes of course, but the way they are sewn in exactly the same.

*The Boyfriend Cardigans from Love Notions (both the Ladies and Girls version) are $5 each TODAY the 19th! Get yours HERE


They have a mid thigh length, dropped shoulders, long sleeves, options of an easy to sew shawl collar or hood with a band, patch pockets and side vents.

What I appreciate the most is the beautiful waist shaping drafted into this style. The sides go in at the waist and the back has a center back seam that also assists in avoiding the boxy shapeless look.

Sizing Girls

The Girls Boyfriend Cardigan is available in sizes 2T-16. For my nieces version, I have detailed updated measurements and even though she is only 5, her measurements put her in a size 7, add another size for growth and hopefully some longevity, I chose a size 8. She is taller for her age and i’t no surprise as my brother is 6ft 4″. The only change I made to size 8 , was make the sleeves a tad shorter.

I have a baby niece who is almost 2yo and will fit into the sizing very soon. I am very excited about sewing this pattern for them both as they grow.

Sizing Ladies

The Ladies Boyfriend Cardigan is available in sizes XS-3XL. The size is chosen based on the full bust. This pattern does not have a full bust options like other patterns do, but the fit is relaxed and I don’t see this style as very sensitive to needing a FBA.

I chose a size Large blended to XL at the hips.


About the fabric, this cardigan can be made with a variety of light to medium weight knit fabric and the drapier, the less structured look will result. My fabric choice for my niece is heavier and will result in a more structured “coatigan look”. I like this!

Knowing what my sister in law likes, and the fact that my niece has this style of long line cardigan in pink (RTW), I decided that this would be a great present for her. Well, one of them… I’ll likely make her more things. I chose a grey sweat-shirting fabric purchased locally with minimal stretch… on the generous side 10% horizontally.

For myself I chose a light loosely woven sweater knit with an interesting print. The type of fabric is very drapy, hangs beautifully and is perfect for mild mild winter (like mine), spring and autumn.

The Sew Along

Due to the ease of construction that is so beginner friendly and the style that is so visually rich at the same time, I decided to film the whole sewing process in the hopes to encourage those new to sewing to try a style like this. It looks harder than it is and in actual fact, this is the shawl collar that I find the easiest to sew. EVER. PERIOD. By the way, I chose the shawl collar option ๐Ÿ™‚

In the sew along, I go over these aspects: Fabric layout and marking notches, stabilizing shoulder seams, general detailed construction and as bonus: mitered corners on the slits. I’m sure that even if you are not that new to sewing, there will be tips useful for you. This is the video on my sewing channel Lifting Pins and Needles.

If you want to sew the woman’s version, the sew along applies just the same. As I mentioned, they are the same… even the same amount of pattern pieces.

Options to simplify the neckline

To make this pattern simpler, there are two options to finish the neckline and front of the cardigan that would be also acceptable, if the hood or shawl isn’t your thing.

  1. Serge the neckline, turn under 3/8″ and top stitch. This will result in a cardigan with less coverage down the center. This would not be shortcut I’d be interested in, but it is mentioned in the pattern as an alternative. This could work with heavier structured knits & a coverstitch. Its important to consider that this option will result in a style that will be far from the middle of the body.
  2. Modify the shawl style neckband to have the width of the bottom of the band all the way up. This will result in an even band that will not turn into the shawl collar shape on the top. This style will resemble many cardigan patterns available. I personally like this pattern for it’s unique feature in the shawl collar. But if it’s not for you, the band is easily modifiable. I needed to resort to this option due to not having enough fabric to cut both the shawl collar pieces.

My band is the original length, but narrower than the original. Its 4.5″ wide. When folded lengthwise and sewn on to the neckline with a smaller seam allowance (seam allowance is 3/8″, I used 1/4″), the band will be 2″ wide. It meets in the middle of the body.

Little Boyfriend Cardigan

I know grey is a blahhhh color but it will work with everything and I know all the pink cuteness will be worn underneath will look great. I even put pockets because I know she loves putting little things in them.

My “blue tones” leopard Boyfriend Cardigan

I made my version 2 ” shorter in total to be able to get it to fit into my fabric. I wanted to make the shawl collar option but sadly did not have enough fabric to cut the collar piece twice. Read above what the solution was…. I am still very happy with my solution, but would have LOVED to sew the shawl collar, like the one my niece has.

The following photos are my “casual style“: Grey denim skirt, cami and smaller heels.

I added a self belt and small belt loops to the side seams as decoration only. I like the look of the ties at the back. I never intend to tie the belt at the front. I had a little scrap…. so why not ๐Ÿ™‚ The belt is the whole width of the fabric (58″) by 4″. When folded lengthwise, sewn and flipped, the finished width of the belt is 1.5″.

I usually lengthen my cardigans to be mid knee, below the hem of my skirts and dresses. This is an exception for two reasons: Not enough fabric and I don’t want my body covered too much in this striking print.

Feature is my black Ponte Roma pencil skirt from the Sybil Illusion skirt collection, also from Love Notions. See how to add the metal zipper HERE and the video about it HERE.

I love the fit and feel of this garment. Blue is as much of a favorite as red it and its a color that makes me feel great. The dropped shoulders fit well and don’t create excess bulk under the arm. My most most most favorite features are the beautiful drafted waist shaping, very flattering and perfect for my body shape that needs the definition at the waist.

I have a video all about my version and share practical aspects of the sewing with this fabric. See it below:

DISCLAIMER: I purchased my own pattern, fabric and notions for this project. There are affiliate links in this post. If you purchase from these links, at no cost to you, I receive a small commission that helps support what I do.


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2 replies »

  1. Hi Karina: I can’t find where to buy the Boyfriend Cardigan pattern from your site. I’m not seeing the affiliate links you mentioned. Thanks.

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