One of the classes I am teaching this semester with the Falmouth Community School is a “Top-Down Sweater” class. Have you ever knit or crocheted a sweater from the top down to the hem? Working in a different direction can have a lot of benefits!
Pattern: Neck Down Cowl Pullover, #291, by Knitting Pure and Simple, available in print here at Sage or via download online
Yarn: Cascade 220, color 9568, 5 hanks
This sweater is knit all in one piece on a circular needle. Which, of course, means NO SEAMS! I am not anti-seam but sometimes it’s nice to cast off and be done. So far, I have cast on at the neckline and increased my way through the yoke of the sweater. Here, you can see I have just divided up my stitches – the sleeves are on hold for later while I work on the body.
Knitting from the top is a fun way to play with the design of your sweater. You can try it on as you go and knit to a length that is appropriate for your body. For this pattern, I will be shortening the body just a bit to hit just below the waist, instead of a few inches below.
If you have ever made a sweater for a child you know that after a few months of wear the body and sleeves are suddenly too short! If you knit the sweater from the top down to the hem, all you have to do is pick out the bind off and make it longer (this is where holding on to your extra yarn pays off!).
There are many wonderful patterns out there for top-down sweaters. Here at Sage Yarn we have a good selection of top-down patterns for babies, children and adults from Knitting Pure and Simple. You can also search Ravelry by keyword here: Knitted Top Down Sweaters, Crocheted Top Down Sweaters.