How to Improve the Look of a Knitted Sweater

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

I’ve just finished a sweater. I used a basic pattern called Lou Sweater by Phildar (you can download it for free at LoveCrafts website) and followed the pattern to a T, but changed several knitting techniques used in this project.

These small adjustments improved the overall look of the sweater quite a bit. In this mini-tutorial, I want to show you each and every little tweak I made.

Because the front, back, side pieces and sleeves have a band made in 1×1 or 2×2 ribbing at the bottom, I used tubular cast on to start each of these pieces.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

The bottom bands are joined so that they form slits at the sides. The pattern instructs to work the bands in plain ribbing, but I thought if the edges are exposed in the slits, it will be better to add selvedges at the sides of each piece. I used slip stitch selvedges, explained as #1 in this tutorial.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

These same selvedges were a huge help when it was time to seam the sweater. I used the way to seam slip stitch edges we discussed in this tutorial to set in sleeves and attach shoulder tabs.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

Because I was careful to form sloped bind off (see this tutorial) when I shaped the top part of the back and front pieces, I was able to create a decorative line when seaming the shoulder tabs in place.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

After testing a few different ways to join side pieces of the sweater to the front and back pieces, I settled on square chain stitch and used a crochet hook to make sure I don’t run out of yarn before the seam is finished.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

I used the same technique to seam sleeves.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

Instead of picking up stitches from the neckline, the pattern suggests to make the neckband separately and attach it to the sweater with backstitch.

Small Changes That Make Big Difference

To be consistent, I used tubular cast on work the neckband in 1×1 ribbing. Next week, I’ll show you how to use tubular cast on when working in the round.

As you well know, I keep learning and testing new knitting tips and tricks and share the best of my findings with you every week. Often I’m driven by curiosity and the sheer wonder at the number of ways to work with two needles and a strand of yarn.

This sweater helped me fully realize how important it is to know all these small ways to improve our knitting, how much they matter to the finished look of a project and how easy it is to implement them in any pattern.


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Here are a few more things you might like:

Happy knitting 🙂


How to Improve the Look of a Knitted Sweater | 10 rows a day
How to Improve the Look of a Knitted Sweater | 10 rows a day