The Easy Long Cardigan, A New Staple In Your Wardrobe

easy long cardigan

This easy long cardigan is very minimalistic and streamlined –perfect for the busty girl.  I have used tulle in the back to add a bit of drama but it is completely optional and you could use the same knit fabric to make the project even simpler.  This is a super easy project.  You'll see that there isn't a long tutorial because the design and construction are so simple.

The easy long cardigan is a design that has been around since the sixties.  A favorite of women who have to step out in their pajamas to drop the kids at school.  At least that is what we see in the movies, isn't it?  The fact is that it is a staple in women's wardrobes. Worn with leggings and a tank top or shorts and heels, it is the perfect accessory to hide your bottom.  Yes, you read right.

easy long cardigan

Sydney, Australia

There's a little backstory to this design that I'd like to share with you.  I was living in Sydney, Australia in 2001 when my mother came to visit.  As far as I can recall, my mother never has never worn pants before that.  In Sydney, winter weather is usually glorious except for a couple of weeks when it can get down to 10 degrees C or 50 degrees F and it's often windy.  As you can imagine, coming from tropical Panama, my mom's wardrobe was not adequate, so we went in search of warmer clothes.

I had jeans in mind, but she refused to wear them.  Her reasons shocked me.  She said my father had told her 30 years back that she did not look good on pants.  Determined to prove him wrong, I invited my mother to sit with me at a cafe and watch the people walking by.   The women in Sydney were comfortable in jeans.  That is what she saw and I was pleased.  However, she was still hesitant to give it a try, so I made her an easy long cardigan.  This would keep her warm and provide her somewhat I personally felt was unnecessary– modesty.  It did the trick and she's literally worn that same easy long cardigan (and pants..) ever since.  I wanted to share the concept with you.  Let's call it Sydney.

easy long cardigan

Key Features of the Easy Long Cardigan:

  • Mid-calf but can be lengthened or shortened
  • No buttons or belt giving a slimming and very elegant look
  • Sizes 8 to 18
  • Adaptable to a printed or plain fabric
  • Super easy to sew


  • Thin cotton or rayon knit jersey (only).  2 1/2 to 3 1/2 yards depending on size.  Please print the pattern to make sure you have enough fabric.
  • Soft tulle to match the color of the jersey.  1 yard.
  • Woven fusible tricot.  I used Pellon.


  • Sewing machine
  • Double twin jersey needle.  I prefer Schmetz.
  • Jersey needle
  • Cover stitch sewing machine (optional)
  • or Serger

Where to find the instructions

Scroll down to the bottom of the page under the social media buttons, it is a small button shown in the picture below. 

Finished Garment Measurements

easy long cardigan

Recommended Fabrics

See next page for pattern download.

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226 Responses to The Easy Long Cardigan, A New Staple In Your Wardrobe

  1. rhbdragon says:

    I think I can hardly wait to make it. I love the styling, especially the back. Thank you so much for sharing. Cheryl

  2. Mary says:

    I keep resting the button for the pattern where the arrow is but it won’t load

  3. Zuleika says:

    Can this be altered to make a cropped cardigan?

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Take a piece of paper and cover the part you are planing to cut away and see if you like the look. The cardigan has no buttons and is meant to be worn open.

  4. Bonny Krause says:

    I can not find the pattern

  5. dora says:

    hi I’m Ratna from Indonesia. thanks for the pattern. your post give me an idea about long cardigan 🙂

  6. Marion says:

    Printing off the pattern now, and have some knit fabric that will work. Can’t wait to start! Thank you.

  7. Sheila J Heinrich says:

    Hi Mayra, just wondering how stretchy the fabric should be? I’m thinking of using some that stretches crosswise from 4″ to 6″. Is that too much? Thanks.

  8. Kathy Olson says:

    So excited to make this cardigan for my daughters and myself! Have a question about the neck binding….is it cut in the direction of the stretch or parallel to the selvage?

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  10. Peg says:

    Nw that I posted that, I found it. Sheesh.

  11. Peg says:

    I agree with those having difficulty finding the directions. I assume you sew front to back and insert sleeves, but I can’t find the actual directions.

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi Peg, I have added a picture of the location of page 2. Please check where to find the instructions heading.

  12. Silvia Frieler says:

    I just need the instruct, can you email them to me? please?

  13. Rachael says:

    This looks like a wonderful pattern, thank you for making and posting it!
    I’ve downloaded it and going through instructions. It says to apply fusible tricot to the armholes, shoulders and neck but I don’t see a pattern piece for the interfacing? I also don’t see it in the pictures posted, so I’m wondering if I should just skip this step?

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Yes I try not to draw any pattern piece that you can do at home because otherwise it would take even more pages to print. Square, rectangles and even circles I skip both to give you a chance to build confidence on drafting a pattern, save paper and save me time. The fusible tricot to the armhole is too increase the life of your cardigan and make it a little easier to stitch in a normal sewing machine. You can make the entire cardigan just using your serger. Happy 2017! Kind Regards, Mayra

  14. Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

    Hi Eva, the chart I have attached is Garment Measurements, the cardigan is close fitted (no ease) because you need to use the recommended fabrics I specify.

  15. Silvia Frieler says:

    Can’t download the pattern, very frustrated

  16. Nancy says:

    I can only add this to my Craftsy favorites, will not let me download the pattern, there is nothing there. Can you help me please, thank you!

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi Nancy, I just tried the links and they are working fine, you need to try to download from the website. Send me an email if you are still having trouble and I will send you the pattern.

  17. Jona says:

    Hi. 🙂 Thank you so very much for this fantastic pattern. I’m a complete beginner, but I’m gonna give it a try. Just ‘have’ to. 😉 It’s the kind of cardigan I’m enamored with. Happy Holidays!

  18. angela m says:

    i would like to shorten the cardigan, is there an appropriate spot to shorten/lengthen or do i just choose my desired length and cut?

  19. Humairah says:

    So happy I found this. I would just like to know.. what is the sizing guide for the sleeve length per size? Thanks.

  20. Lyn says:

    Hi, how do I make the pattern larger please? A size 22 thanks ……..

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      That would have to be a whole tutorial.

      • mccandlessquilts says:

        This would be a Most helpful tutorial. Please consider doing this tutorial. Also a specific tutorial on increasing the bust cup size. As a natural G/H Cup, finding a woven, at times even knit tops is a challenge to say the least. If the bust fits, I usually have to take in the armhole and waist area. If I could get a pattern to fit, I would make nearly every top I wear.
        Thank you for considering this request. I am positive that I am not the only one with the issue. Probably the A Cups have the same issues at the other end of the spectrum.

  21. Lenora says:

    I cannot find the link to see how to make the cardigan

  22. Winona says:

    Where is the link to the pattern?

  23. Sabina says:

    Hey Mayra, I can’t dicide witch size I need. My sizes are buste 38, waist 32 and hipes 40. There is no matching size. Witch one should I take?

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      HI Sabina, If you use the same fabric as I did, I would use size 12, if you use a thicker fabric or planning to add buttons then I would go with 14. Hope that helps, let me know how you go with it.

      • Sabina Claes says:

        Thanks I am about to cut the pattern pieces and sew it. I am going to wear it on a wedding, I also made the lace shrug for one of the bride mades. And pherhaps the other two (mades) wont it also. It was very easy to make and I am so happy with your patterns. Thanks again, greatings from Belgium

  24. Lenora says:

    I would love to make the long coat but can’t find the directions anywhere. I can see the suply list but can’t get to the directions. Please help

    • Lisa says:

      There’s a teeny little “pages 1 -2” link right below the Pinterest button, click to the second page and the directions are there!

  25. Mary Phelan says:

    I prefer a bit heavier knit for projects like this, like a mid-weight Ponte, which is a dream to work with! Also, I do like this way of adding sleeves (the open, as opposed to the in-the-round method), then sewing the side seams. Learned a good tip for this method, if the sleeve or the actual garment is a bit longer than the sleeve opening, place the longer side on the feed dogs and let the feed dogs do the work to get everything to fit nicely and smooth.

  26. Amy Johnson says:

    I downloaded from Craftsy. Not seeing the instructions?

  27. damfree says:

    Thank you for including larger sizes on the pattern. I am eager to make this in a variety of lengths, and perhaps as a vest as well. Time to check the fabric stash….

  28. Zanap says:

    Just what I needed. Hides thick thighs and a big booty

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  31. Belinda says:

    I received an email from Craftsy today noting that there has been an update to this pattern which I had downloaded last week. Can you please tell me what changes were made because I printed out the pdf already. Thanks so much! I’m eager to make this project.

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi Belinda, I added the sizing chart and the finished garment measurements to the pattern. No need to reprint if you’ve already done it.

  32. Xuan says:

    First of all, thank you for the free pattern. I’m looking forward to sewing it up! Second, where can I find the sizing guide? I see your response about updating the article but I don’t see it.

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi, I have added the sizing and finished garment measurements in the article as well as on the pattern itself.

  33. Susan says:

    Looks like exactly what I am desiring to sew with my new sweater knits from LA. Is there a sizing chart? I am unable to locate it.

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi, I have added the sizing and finished garment measurements in the article as well as on the pattern itself.

  34. Ruthann says:

    Hi there! Did you add a sizing chart? Just downloaded, couldn’t find. Thanks so much for the great pattern!

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi, I have added the sizing and finished garment measurements in the article as well as on the pattern itself.

  35. Sadie Bauer says:

    Somehow I have missed the sewing instructions containing the use of the “straps” mentioned, & finishing of the front. Is there a separate text file somewhere? Eagerly waiting to cut & wear this great piece! Thanks

  36. Linda says:

    Looking for the sizing guide. Says posted here but don’t see it.

    • Mayra at So Sew Easy says:

      Hi, I have added the sizing and finished garment measurements in the article as well as on the pattern itself.

  37. Linda Thompson says:

    I can’t wait to make one for myself! Will be good Christmas gift for my daughters. Thanks!

  38. Michele McDonald says:

    Hi Mayra,

    Have downloaded the instructions and pattern, but I cannot find a sizing guide … have I missed something?


  39. Alana says:

    Does the pattern include a 5/8″ seam allowance, or do we add the seam allowance before cutting the fabric?

  40. Delphine says:

    Thank You. Here in Paris, France the weather is changing so this long cardigan is very welcome.

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