If you are making a cardigan there are a few extra things for you to consider.
There are two ways to make a cardigan, by knitting the body flat or by knitting the body in the round and steeking (cutting the finished sweater open…it’s really not so gruesome as it sounds). If you plan to go the route of steeking you will need add a few extra stitches so that you’ll have room for cutting and facing your steek. If you’re going to knit the body flat you’ll need to make some allowances as well.
Download and print this worksheet to fill out as you go along.
Click here to download the Steek & Buttonband Worksheet
Adding A Steek Allowance
FOR A V-NECK: There is no extra math required so this will be fairly simple. After you have increased to your desired number of right front and left front stitches, cast on 8 sts at the end of the row before joining to knit in the round.
Example 1: After I have worked to the point where I have added all 20 right front and 20 left front sts I will cast on 8 stitches before beginning work in the round.
FOR A CREW NECK: You will simply be adding a few extra stitches to your center front stitches to allow room for cutting and facing your steek.
_______center front stitches + 8 = _______center front stitches with steek allowance
Example 2: Using my numbers in equation #7 from yesterday’s math my math will look like this:
12 + 8 = 20 center front stitches with steek allowance.
Adding A Button Band Allowance
When you are making a cardigan you can add a button band in two different ways. The first way is to simply include it in your knitting by changing stitch patterns at the beginning and end of each row for your desired button band width. The second way is to actually leave a space for the button band to be picked up and knit on after the rest of the sweater is complete.
Because there are no additional calculations needed for the first option, these instructions are for a button band that will be picked up and knit onto your sweater at the end of the sweater knitting process.
NOTE: If you have chosen to add a zipper instead of a button band you will not need to make any allowances.
FOR A V-NECK:
1. Desired width of button band (even numbers are easiest) = _______sts
2. _______ Desired width of button band ÷ 2 = _______ Half of button band
3. _______ Right front sts – _______ Half of button band = _______ Right front stitches with button band allowance
4. _______ Left front sts – _______ Half of button band = _______ Left front stitches with button band allowance
As you are knitting the neckline you will be using these updated numbers for your right front and left front stitches instead of the ones previously calculated.
Example 1: If I want my button band to be 6 sts wide my math will look like this:
2. 6 ÷ 2 = 3
3. 20 – 3 = 17 right front stitches with button band allowance
4. 20 – 3 = 17 left front stitches with button band allowance
FOR A CREW NECK:
1. Desired width of button band (even numbers are easiest) = _______ Button band sts
2. _______ Center front stitches – _______ Button band stitches = _______ Center front stitches with button band allowance
Example 2: If I want my button band to be 4 sts wide and using my center front math from yesterday’s equation #7 my math will look like this:
2. 12 – 4 = 8 center front stitches with button band allowance.
Alrighty, now that you’ve got that figured out you can begin knitting!