So the sweater I’m knitting calls for the sleeves to be done seperate then sewn in. It’s possible to pick up stitches to knit the sleeves in directly, right? What are the pros and cons of this?
I’m not sure how you’d shape a sleeve cap like that…Possible, yes? Possible with your pattern? Who’s to say. I know that drop-shoulder garments are made this way sometimes and that traditonal fair isle garments are always made that way.
Yes, it’s possible! Barbara Walker explains how to do this in Knitting from the Top. It involves doing some short rows. I know that I’ve seen some explanations in a couple knitting blogs… maybe doing a google search will yield something. I’ve also seen the concept explained in one of the EZ books (can’t remember which one) and (I believe) in Sweater Design in Plain English by Maggie Righetti and that also the sweater book by Anne Budd. I think a lot of people like to do it this way, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find instructions.
When I did it the first time, I didn’t know how to do short rows, but I figured it out after some practice. It was a fun thing to master. Good luck!
If the sleeve top and armholes have shaping, then it’s not so easy, as Aiden pointed out. There are ways to do it, but they involve short rows. I know there are books out there that show you how, but I don’t know of a simple way to explain it.
If the armhole is straight and the top of the sleeve is straight, then it’s a good idea to pick up the stitches and knit in the round all the way down. It really saves a lot of time seaming, and the sleeves get smaller all the way down–a very nice thing when you’re at the end of a project.
You can also modify a sweater with a set in sleeve by just making it a drop sleeve. It really depends on the type and fit of the garment.