I have had a lot of interest in my knitting techniques and finishing for the Cropped Sweater I made for myself with The Fibre Co. Cumbria (Fingering in Eden Valley), so I thought it a good idea to make a little post about it.
I always try to post the inside of my works, I am forever saying that the finishing of a garment is how you can transform average, to above average. It's just as important for the luxury feel and often the structure of the garment.
Sweater Structure and Seams
I am a plus size lady with a large difference between my waist and bust, a garment with structure helps define this shape, and to sit correctly. The best way to achieve this is with seams, seams are a double thickness and stronger than regular knitting, this helps control the way a garment can stretch.
However, knitting items flat means you can't try it on constantly to ensure the perfect fit, so when casting on I add 2 extra stitches at each side of the waist and these are worked as a purl. These stitches run from the bottom of the waist, up to the arm pit and down the sleeve. The rows can be sewn up like a normal flat garment with mattress stitch, although it's much easier as you don't need to worry about lining your sweater up
If you have worked alternative skeins with hand dyed yarn, run the vertical threads along the right side of the garment at the seam (purl channel). When seaming up the edge do it over the vertical threads, this then encloses them inside the thread, similar to a french hem in sewing.
A lot of negative ease really helps with a slim tailored fit. I personally have around 15cm at the waist, 10 over bust, and 5 on arms.
Twisted rib is tighter than normal 1x1 rib, this is worked by knitting through the back loop, I also think that it gives a more polished look when done as a long rib at the waist.
Try it on!
Constantly try on the sweater and compare it to the sweater you want to mimic, when I first knitted my sweater I realised it was a little too short to the arm pits, so I was able to just pick it up and knit again. "Try on cables" are either a very long cable, or a 2nd cable (I used two 60cm cables) which let you knit onto them, try on the sweater, then keep knitting rather than putting onto waste yarn. Big time saver.
Hopefully a few of these tips help with your sweater construction when looking for a super fitting silohette.