You can make a sweater on a Knifty Knitter round loom set. (Of course you can also use the straight looms they sell, but say you bought the round set just to learn how to use it to see if you’d like it – well, those are really all you need).
If you’ve already followed the instructions that came with the loom set to learn how to use it and you made the hat, not only do you already know most all you need to know, but you can use the hat to measure yourself for anything else you want to make. Just hold it up to yourself systematically and count the rows around whatever body part you need to know about. This is the number of stitches you need to be on your loom when you’re making that part. Be very careful to not skip any space on yourself as you move the hat. You can of course also make a swatch to use for this, a longer swatch is more helpful than a shorter one – just make one 10 or more stitches long and 5 stitches high, then you can save it for measuring anytime you plan to loom. Make sure to leave yourself a little room, a sweater that is a little big is better than one that is too small. You will likely wear this over another shirt because it is so thick (you may get very hot if you can’t take it off in heated buildings) so you will want a little room in it.
It may not sound that easy, counting stitches to get to your size, but the stitches made by these looms are HUGE, and you use either very bulky yarn or 2 strands of something worsted thickness, so counting is really quite easy. These are the counts for the first Knifty Knitter sweater I made. These counts should not be used for you, they are just to illustrate where on yourself you need to measure.
You can see that I did the back straight, ignoring the need for an underarm area, (I wish I could remember why) which I later found I needed. That’s why the optional under arm filler is there. I whipped up some quick sides for the under arm area. You can avoid doing sides by simply adding the needed area for your underarm to both your back and front pieces.
First you’ll make the back piece, you can use the biggest loom (yellow one in my set). It has 41 pegs, so as long as your back piece is 41 or less, you can just make the whole piece at once. If its more than 41, you may want to do your back in two halves. You make a flat back piece by going back and forth on the loom and not connecting it into a circle. I used 2 strands of Red Heart worsted weight yarn for mine (one aqua, one mint green). I started at the hips and worked up. If you don’t want the side pieces that allow you to work in a straight line, you will have to account for that in your measuring, and you will need to decrease once you hit the arm pit area to make an armhole. Picture this, you’re going back and forth in rows, knitting your back piece on your loom – to decrease you take a loop off of a peg on the end of your knitting (the one closest to the arm hole), and flip that loop onto the peg next to it (which has the second from the end on it). You now have 2 loops on that peg. Then, you can do the decrease one of two ways, whichever you prefer. 1. Flip the bottom loop yarn over the top one and off the peg, you’re done. Or 2. Wrap and work the next row as normal (after you’ve moved that end stitch to the 2nd peg), and when you get to that peg with the 2 loops on it, wrap that peg and lift both loops over and off (leaving the wrapped yarn on as usual). It is essentially a “knit 2 together”. and you’ve decreased one stitch. Do it again and you’ve decreased 2, and you are well on your way to shaping the armhole. Then just knit the next row as normal, knitting all occupied pegs. Just decrease until you’ve got the count you need for the part that stretches across your back near the neck (the top “32” on my chart).
(Note: Since this post I have done another one of a vest with pictures demonstrating increasing and decreasing on the Knifty Knitter here.
When you want to shape the neck hole in the back, you don’t need to leave off many of those huge stitches. I bound off 9 of my stitches in the middle, (I think 8 would have done it too) leaving on the pegs the two ends which are the count that I would need for the shoulder flaps (which was 11, the amount I’d need to meet the shoulder flaps in the front and match them).. Bind off the neck stitches the way you normally bind off knitting, taking just those stitches off the pegs as you go. Then you just work on your back shoulder flaps, going back and forth on each flap until its big enough – hold it up to yourself and see.
Work the front pieces in the same manner, from the bottom up. Straight if you use a side piece, or decreasing at the armpit if you didn’t use a side piece. (Remember that if you decrease to hold the sweater up to you before you start so you decrease on the right side (you don’t want two left fronts!). Makes sure also that you’re making all of your pieces the same length so that when you stitch them all together, they line up at the bottom.
For the sleeves, I used the 2nd smallest loom (red in my set), which has 31 pegs, starting at the shoulder. I did not do a shoulder cap, just made a tube. I worked in a circle (connected it) until the point where I wanted to decrease, then flipped a loop over another as described above under decreasing, and started working back and forth. The opening can be seamed later and located under the arm to hide it more. This photo shows what happens when you change from working in the round to working back and forth. It changes the shape of your stitches. I liked this effect as I felt it added interest to the sweater. If you don’t want this, do your sleeve back and forth down the whole length and stitch it up at the end.
Finishing: I didn’t worry about curling, and all the stitches are stockinette. (You can do purl stitches on the loom, search online and you will find videos showing you how). So to help with some of the curling and add interest to the sweater, I did double crochet on all edges (around the wrists, around the neck and down the front, and at the bottom). I wish I could tell you what hook I used to do that, but my hook has no size written on it. 20 years ago, it used to be the only giant hook I could find, plastic and light blue. I’m guessing its a size O or P or something. The crochet also gives you buttonholes, so I got some big buttons that were long in one direction so they would stay closed.
I like this sweater, its thick enough to use as a light coat in milder weather, and it was FAST to make with these big ol’ stitches. Have fun designing your own original sweater!
If you found this post through a search, please visit my “Links” page to see other Knifty Knitter projects. There is a “Links” tab at the top of this page, and also a link to it at the right.