The last time we discussed how to design different styles of clothing with squares and rectangles. If you can make an afghan or a dishcloth, then you can design and make a sweater. Below you will see some of the other shapes that result in stylish designs. Study them, choose a layout, and then go back to Design Lesson I and do your math. Once you have planned your design and finished your pattern pieces, you simply join them together and do some edging. Voila! You’re done!
The Simplest Design of All
The above layout is for a sleeveless jacket or vest. You can see that you simply make a large rectangle to your measurements and then leave two slits open for armholes. The top of the jacket will fold over as a large cowl. This design is very flattering and various types of yarns can give many different effects. I made the Draped Sleeveless Jacket using this layout.
Another Simple Design
In the above drawing you will note that the basic rectangle has been changed somewhat to include cutouts for the neck area. Once you have finished your pattern pieces, you can either make a rounded neck by working decreases at the corners when you do your trim or keep the neck square. You can also add a cowl collar which is what I did when I used this layout for my Envy Sweater.
Other Popular Layouts
My Favorite Design
This side-to-side cardigan is a composite of my own design and a commercial pattern. But the layout is simple and one that I have used over and over again. You can work it in an airy open stitch as in the above photo or you can use a denser stitch and make a winter jacket. By simply adding a collar and cuffs you can change it into a coat.
I hope that I’ve given you some good ideas. Please let me know if you are going to try one of these layouts. I’ll be happy to help with the math and any other problems you might encounter. Next lesson, we will explore some ways of shaping your garment to make it a little more fitted.