Garment Patterns for Knit Patterns?

Those of you that have a lot of experience in making sweaters or other garments, perhaps you can elaborate on the following. I am a seamtress and have made ladies and girls garments and suits for years. The seamtress in me is telling me that I can use simple paper pattern pieces as guides or patterns for sweaters too. IE. I don’t have written instructions for a certain sweater pattern, but using what knowledge I have of sweater construction I could knit the sweater pieces, increasing and decreasing where needed in order for the knitted piece to conform to the shape of the paper garment pattern. Then seam the knitted garment together. I’m aware that there might be some modifications needed here and there, but this can be done this way, can’t it? Seeing schematics (?SP) for different patterns is what got me to thinking on this line.

Thanks for any help anyone can give.
Sandra from SC

I think you could. The schematics are like sewing pattern pieces in a way. You’re starting with a specific measurement, increasing and/or decreasing (like a sleeve) to achieve another specific measurement to bind off with. There’s a couple books out on sweater design; I don’t know if they’d be helpful to you, or not.


Long-time sewer and knitter here. Yes, quite easy to do. There are some instances where, for example, sleeve design and armscye in sewing pattern better exemplifies the shape you want vs the totally symmetrical concept in knitting pattern. Good book, if you’ve not already read it, is Righetti’s ‘Sweater Design in Plain English’…as she comes from ‘seamstressing’ bg and speaks to the differences between woven and knitted fabs and how they respond to shaping.

Good luck!


BUT (and you knew there was one)
different knitting stitch combinations pull in at different rates
so the finished project might pull in at places from a cable or change in pattern
but for straight stockinette, it should be fine


Interweave knits has some “basic recipie” books that might be like what you are looking for…

Handy Book of Sweater Patterns

Handy Book of Patterns