AK Patterns – Nikki cardigan

I’ve had a super productive week this week! I’ve been on half term and managed to get lots of jobs done. I’ve moved most of my sewing stuff into my new sewing room and built furniture! I’ve also bought a pet rabbit, who is mega cute, and more importantly, I’ve managed to sew two things! Both of these things were cardigans and are entries for #cosycardichallenge. Last year, I was supposed to make a Blackwood cardigan for it but didn’t get round to it until February! Oops! I’ve definitely made progress by sewing 2 for this year.

One of the cardigans I made was another Blackwood cardigan by Helen’s Closet. I made it in a lovely, soft knit fabric from Sew Me Sunshine. It’s exactly the same as the one I made previously, just a slightly different fabric. You can see my review of the first one here. I’ll just say that I still love the cardigan pattern. It’s super quick and super comfy!


Onto the main business of this post…

The other cardigan I made was the Nikki Cardigan by AK Patterns. AK Patterns is owned by Athina Kakou who used to co-run Smyly but now has her own pattern business which includes the old Smyly patterns. The muse for this cardigan is Nikki from The Stitch Sisters. I had no plans to make one of these until I watched the Stitch Sisters vlog of how to style the cardigan (and the Rachel jumpsuit that was released at the same time) 3 ways. I loved the version that Nikki had made so much that I bought some of the exact fabric (I think) and whipped up my own.

nikki cardi

The fabric is a gorgeously soft rust colour ponte roma from Lamazi fabrics. I’ve just checked the website and they appear to have sold out. It’s perfect for this cardigan, although you could use pretty much any knit fabric depending on how warm you want it to be.

The pattern comes in two lengths. I made the shorter version. The cardigan is a wrap style cardigan so there is a belt and optional belt loops. You could use a regular belt if you wanted to fasten it. Athina has many different options in one of her YouTube videos. I made the belt but not the belt loops.

I made a straight size 16. The fit is good but there isn’t really many fitting issues with a jersey top especially if it’s a wrap style with no fastenings. The only thing I would change is add an inch or two to the length as my tshirt hung lower than the cardigan, as you’ll see in some pictures. I had to keep rolling the bottom of it up.


The construction was super simple. It’s similar to the Blackwood cardigan to make. The only slight issue I had was attaching the neck band. You cut two identical pieces, then sew them together with a 1cm seam allowance so you have long piece. Sew the ends together, then turn it through and press in half before attaching it to the cardigan. Both pieces of the neckband were identical length and I matched the seam on the neck band with the centre back. One side of the neck band fitted perfectly and sewed beautifully. The other side needed a lot of easing as it kept coming up an inch or so short. I repined it about 3 times and managed to sew it flat, with no tucks, but it is a little bit puckered where I stretched the fabric to make it fit. I don’t know if one side of the cardigan is longer than the other but there is no mention of that in the instructions. They also look like they are the same length. It’s strange. It doesn’t have a huge impact on the cardigan and I still love it, just something to be aware of.

Athina has loads of resources on her website that are helpful and a sewalong video on her YouTube channel if you need any help.

Pattern review

Name: Nikki Cardigan

Company: AK Patterns

Description: The Nikki Cardigan is destined to become your go-to cardigan pattern. With a wrap style and two different length options, you can create stylish and comfortable cardis to keep you warm all year long.

Printed or PDF: PDF only

Sizing: 4 – 28. I made a 16.

Alterations: None. I made the shorter length with a belt, but no belt loops.

Fabric: Ponte Roma – I think it could be made in almost any medium to heavy weight knit fabric.

Difficulty rating: Beginners. There are no fastenings, closures, darts or anything complicated. You can opt to topstitch your seam allowance down for the hem band and neck band, which I did.

Difficulties encountered: The neck band didn’t fit properly on one side. It took a lot of easing and you can see a few puckers where I had to stretch the fabric to fit. The other side fitted perfectly.

Time taken: A couple of hours

Recommend: Yes

What would I change: I would lengthen one of the neckband pieces and add an inch or two to the length of the cardigan.

My favourite thing: It’s super simple to make and the fabric is lovely and soft.


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