Valentino Sweater

At the risk of understating it, we must say that the whole office is quite enthused about our November Do It Yourself story! In addition to the fact that the resulting product is totally spot-on and wonderfully stylish, it also manages to kill two birds with one stone by combining two of the biggest fall runway trends! Inspired by the fanciful knits from the Valentino F/W 11 collection, this lovely projects melds the season's wildly popular crewneck sweater with the perfect amount of textured lace detailing, making it a must-have piece for all wardrobes this winter and a natural subject for our next D.I.Y. adventure!

The Valentino F/W 11 show played out, as usual, like a fashion lover's dream, filled with everything from glamorous day dresses in pretty pastel hues to breathtakingly beautiful textured gowns! Designers Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli didn't disappoint when it came to their more casual designs either, like the Lace-Appliqued Merino Wool-Blend Sweater ($1890), shown above. We were immediately taken by the casual-yet-completely-chic navy sweater, and were particularly fond of the way Chiuri and Piccioli styled it with a tiered lace skirt and ankle-strap heels for an au courant ladylike ensemble. The subtle lace detailing not only gives the otherwise understated piece some visual intrigue, but it also lends itself to a more feminine, dressier look overall! So whether you decide to pair it with jeans for a weekend outing or a silk maxi skirt for a knockout evening outfit, we're positive this appliquéd knit will become a go-to in your closet!

Now, while the exact Valentino sweater is quite dreamy indeed, we understand the accompanying price tag is a bit steep, especially for those of us who have a fall wardrobe budget to stick to! As such, we set out to create our own version, and called upon D.I.Y genius Erica Domesek, of P.S. I Made This, to show us the way. With an hour to spare, a few simple ingredients, and five easy-to-follow steps, Domesek managed to create a nearly identical Valentino-inspired sweater at a fraction of the cost. We're crazy for the black-on-black version she put together here, but it should be noted that the colour options are endless, so you have the opportunity to really personalise the sweater and make it your own. Happy crafting!

-American Apparel's Fisherman Sweater ($78)
-1-2 yards of Wide French Lace ($25/yard)
-Paper and Pen (to make pattern)
-Chalk (to outline pattern if desired)
-Dritz Home Unique Stitch Fabric Glue ($4)
-3-inch Foam Brush ($.50)

Before you begin, make sure to clear a large surface so that you can lay your sweater down flat on your workspace.

1. Draw and cut out a circular pattern, which will be used to block out the center area of the sweater. The pattern should be placed approximately 2-3 inches below the neckline and approximately 5 inches from the bottom of the sweater. (Please note: the shape doesn't have to be a perfect circle, and the size will be determined by the size of the size of the sweater's center).

2. Cover the surface of your sweater (minus the sleeves) with the lace then pin the pattern you create on top of the lace.

3. Cut the lace around the pattern. Once completed, remove the pattern and excess pieces so that the lace only remains on the outside edges of your sweater.

4. With the foam brush, apply a thin layer of fabric glue on the sweater, wherever you want the lace to adhere. Pat the lace down on the sweater and wait approximately 30 minutes or until completely dry.

5. Trim any excess lace that is hanging off of the edges of your sweater for a clean look.

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