McCall’s 7430- A sweater dress


img_9604As you all know, I am a big fan of sweater knits, so much so I tend to stash/horde every one I find. Yes, I have quite a few squirreled away in my sewing nook, so (fair warning here) this is only the beginning of my annual sweater knit obsession.

Here is why I love them so, so much.  Most sweater knits are easy to sew (even without a fancy serger, just use a zigzag stitch) and wonderful to wear. I’m talking about those moderate stretch wonders with just the right amount of lycra with a dense, cozy weave. This houndstooth sweater knit is a perfect example of why I’m obsessed. It’s the perfect mix of stretch and cozy…destined to become a fall/winter wardrobe staple.


McCall’s 7430 is the perfect sweater dress.

I love the side panels, the neckline variations, and the front and back yoke. I also love the sleeve caps. You could really have fun with contrast and color blocking here. There’s so much you can do with this pattern to make it your own.

The only modifications I made to the dress were to add front patch pockets, each 6 inches by five inches (gotta keep those pinkies warm!). I added contrast sleeve bands to finish the cuffs as well, but this is so optional. You could easily hem them with your machine as the pattern suggests.

One note about fit. The side panels eliminate the usual side seams so it’s a bit harder to use them to modify fit. Yes, I’m a big fan of taking a dress in at the sides, and I hate making muslins on a knit pattern.  It’s not impossible to adjust this pattern that way. It’s just a bit more time consuming, and if you adjust those panels too much, you run the risk of changing the look of your lovely dress. So, I’m glad the sizing is pretty true on this pattern because I didn’t need to make any adjustments at all. Phew!

img_9581I guess my obsession with sweater knits isn’t likely to end in the near future :). I’ll probably make another dress from this pattern, out of a solid knit with a contrast, since it’s so comfy and versatile. I think it’s one of those patterns you can dress up or down, maybe even make as a tunic length to wear over leggings. Love these inspiring versions from Vince Camuto…


Hmmmm, so mamy options, so little time to sew! Curious if you all are as obsessed with sweater knits as I am? Pretty sure there’s a color blocked version of this dress in my very near future!

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!


26 thoughts on “McCall’s 7430- A sweater dress

  1. That is a cute pattern and I like the idea of sweater knits (if it ever cools off in the south). Where do you find the knits and what is a good fiber content? Is it better to have some lycra content? What percentage? You look good in the dress and thanks for pointing out the pattern. Carolyn

    1. Thanks! I find sweater knits at fabric depot and Modern Domestic here in Portland. Both sell on-line. Joann’s carries sweater knots too. I look for a bit of Lycra, and use the ruler on the back of the pattern envelope to test whether or not the knit has enough recovery for the pattern I plan to make. I like some cotton, rayon or wool content as well so that it feels good when I wear it. Threads has a bit of info on knits on their website if you want to learn more…yes it’s a fabulous pattern, can’t wait to try it again!

  2. So lucky that you didn’t need to make any adjustments! I’m loving the placement of the print and the solid. Super cute!

  3. Love it! And I really like the sleeve caps. It’s little details like those that set a piece apart from the ordinary. I like the idea of a sweater dress so much now! I’ll have to find some fabric though as that’s one type my stash is lacking. Once again, thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Thanks! Totally agree about those sleeve caps. It’s a detail you find on the runway, but not so much in sewing patterns. How fun to have a reason to build up your fabric stash:)

  4. There are a few of these nice, easy to make, easy to wear autumn dresses about. And I love them. Especially on women with neat little figures like yours. But I find them way to clingy on the lower half myself unfortunately.

    1. I hear you. If a dress is too clingy it’s not comfortable or fun to wear. I don’t think in this instance the fit has to do with my figure, but more about this fabulous knit. It has enough ‘body’ to keep it from sticking to me 🙂 which isn’t always the case. I stay away from bamboo knits and some rayon knits for that very reason, choosing cotton or wool jerseys when I can. They seem to show less of my bumps and jiggles.

    1. Thanks! I wore the dress yesterday and it was the perfect weight for fall. I was lucky to find this knit. It felt like I was just in the right place at the right time. I will always be a die-hard fan of color blocking:)

  5. So glad I found your blog. I adore your version of the M7430 sweater dress. I may have to do a little fabric shopping today . . . 🙂

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