We’ve talked about how this sweater wound up being a V-neck, why this sweater reinforced my love for top-down knitting, and how much I adore this yarn (especially at this gauge), but I know a lot of you just want the details already! I hear you — here they are! Please accept my apologies for the terrible FO photos lately — I am really struggling with the grainy winter light and cannot wait for it to end.
This here is a super straightforward top-down raglan, and if you know how to knit a top-down sweater below is everything you need to replicate it. The one thing I really wanted to play with on this one, though, was actually shaping the raglan seams. I first toyed around with the notion a few years ago (and have since heard the term “compound raglan” floating around but am not sure precisely what’s meant by it!) but had a different idea I wanted to try. Basically, I wanted something in between a saddle shoulder and a raglan, and wanted to see if I could curve the seams in a way that was more flattering than a straight 45° line jutting out from the neckline (often at an odd starting point). So rather than beginning with a sleeve stitch count that’s 30% of the back-neck count, as is the norm, I started with a higher ratio of sleeve stitches and worked the increases in the sleeves and body at differing rates, such that the front and back initially got wider at a faster rate than the sleeves did (for a more outward raglan line), then at the same rate for a bit (the old 45° angle), and then the sleeves got wider faster than the body (for a more downward slope). Hopefully between the photos and the notes below, you’ll see what I mean. I’m totally thrilled with the outcome.
3.5 sts and 5 rows = 1 inch (measured over 4″ = 14/20) knitted on US10
42″ chest = 148 sts
16″ upper arm circumference = 56 sts
9″ cuff circumference
21″ total length
9″ yoke/armhole depth (45 rounds)
12″ body length (3″ hem ribbing)
7.5-8″ sleeve length (3″ cuff ribbing)
— Wanted 6.5″ back neck measurement and higher ratio of sleeve stitches, as noted above = 23 back neck sts, plus 15 for each sleeve, 2 for each raglan and 1 each at the front neck
– Thus CO 63 sts, divided with markers as follows ( 1 | 2 | 15 | 2 | 23 | 2 | 15 | 2 | 1 )
– Planned on 11 sts cast on at each underarm, and divided the raglan stitches evenly between sections when separating sleeves from body
— Worked raglan increases as kfb on either side of the raglan stitches, differing increase rates as noted below
— Increased at the front neck on 1st RS row then every other row until 18 sts each front, 41 back sts between markers; cast on 5 sts and joined in the round (front sts at 18 each + the 5 cast on = 41 front)
— Increased the sleeve sts on the 1st RS row, then every 4th row 3x, then every other row until until 43 sts (plus 2 from the raglans at separation, plus 11 underarm cast-on = 56 / 16″); work-even till separation at 9″ depth
— Increased the front and back on 1st RS row, then every other row 11x, then every 4th row 2x, then every other row until 61 sts each (plus 2 from the raglans at separation, plus 11 per underarm cast-on = 74; front + back = 148 / 42″)
— Worked sleeves even for 4.5″, then decreased 8 sts evenly around (48), one row even, decreased 8 sts evenly around again (40), then switched to US8 needles and worked 2×2 ribbing for 3″
— Worked body even for 9″ (with a basting stitch at each side seam, to be mattress stitched later), then switched to US9 needles and worked 2×2 ribbing for 3″
— Worked the neckband as 2×2 ribbing for 5 rounds
— Wound up blocking it at 44″ wide (9.5″ positive ease) and it’s perfect
I did have to think a little about that V neck, since it wasn’t a complete V but more of a blunted one — remember I had actually cast on 5 stitches. When picking up stitches for the neckband, I picked up (and marked off) the center stitch, skipped the two flanking that stitch, and picked up the remaining two, and picked up the rest of the way around the neck as normal. That pulled it into more of a true V. Then I worked that center stitch as a purl stitch and the rest in 2×2 ribbing, and decreased on either side of the center stitch (inward leaning decreases) every other round. Worked out great.
PREVIOUSLY in FOs: Bob’s rollneck sweater