Thursday, June 2, 2011

Experiement In Pink

yarn: Sanguine Gryphon Bugga, color: Cotton Stainer, 3 skeins
needles: US #4,  and #3 for I-cord edging.

Set-in sleeves scares me a bit.  I figured out how to do the calculations with Valentine Pullover, but it just seemed like quite a bit of math.  I generally have a preference towards knit in round, and especially top-down.  Much of it is out of laziness about seaming, but also, top-down in round knitting provides the benefit of trying on the sweater as I go.

I have used the method with pick up stitches around armhole which still required knitting  front and back separately above underarm. Somehow with this method the sleeves usually turned out wider proportionally  than I wanted.

Lately I saw on Ravelry a version of knitting set-in sleeves in round called Contigous method and I was very intrigued. I read it and found it to be a very smart way of doing top down in round with set-in sleeves knitting at the same time as body. But alas it wasn't exactly what I was looking for.  I really wanted a formula that will make design very easy.

As much as I was a very good math student in high school, I had not touched math since then.  Doing calculations grading multiple sizes for patterns always drove me crazy.  I feel like I'm getting too old to keep track all the calculations in writing a pattern.  So my goal with this formula was that once I have entered it into Excel, I'll never have to do any math again for this part. 

With this formula, I was looking for top-down set-in sleeves knitted in round at the same time as the body.  I was looking for bell shape sleeve cap with the proportion of the curves all predetermined.

After some serious math (I thought my brain was going to explode,)  I was able to figure out a formula that seems to deliver the result I wanted.  Now  all I will ever have to do is plug in the gauges, the desired width of chest, shoulder, neck, sleeves, underarm, and the height of armhole in Excel spreadsheet.  

This formula started with shoulder done in short rows. then the other front/back of shoulder was picked up sts from CO edge.  The second shoulder was knitted separately.  Two shoulders were joined when the desired back neck depth was achieved. The sleeves were then knitted at the same time as the body in round.

During the very first part of knitting I realized one slight mistake in the formula, so I ripped back the knitting, fixed the formula, and started again  from the beginning.  The rest seemed to worked out smoothly.

There was not much design concept for this particular sweater. The bottom and the sleeves elements were decided when I got to it, so was the collar and edging.  I was't particular about the decorative element. mainly focused on testing the formula.   But I got too bored knitting st st, especially after the previous sweater - Stream of Unconsciousness. 

This sweater had zero sewing except for the buttons and button loops.


This is just the first sweater to try out my formula.   It looks like the formula works.  I'm gonna try few other different weight yarn to test it more, and fine-tuning how the increase sts are done to make it "look" neater.

I'm hoping all this will help me in widen my range of designs.  I'm pretty pleased with it.  A little happy dance is in order.



  1. Is this something you will be sharing?

  2. wow--that's really cool! Your sweater fits your shoulders beautifully.