A crochet sweater pattern book
Today I am happy to review for you, Top-Down Crochet Sweaters, by Dora Ohrenstein, a crochet sweater pattern book. This crochet book includes 14 patterns for top-down crochet sweaters, and also a lot of great information to help you be successful at crocheting a sweater with perfect fit.
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Table of Contents
The technique section of the book includes chapters about how to use this top-down method to shape necklines and armholes, about how to move from the yoke to the body and then the sleeves.
There are tips about gauge, drape, blocking, and choosing the right yarn for the project. You’ll find information about ease, measuring for good fit, reading schematics, and making alterations to the patterns.
Why top-down crochet sweaters?
You may be wondering, why make a top-down sweater? Why write a whole crochet sweater pattern book that focuses on this one construction method? Why is that better than making a sweater bottom-up? From Dora’s Introduction in the book:
“In my travels as a teacher and designer, I’ve heard many crocheters voice one burning desire: to make beautiful garments that really fit. This book aims to provide the tools and knowledge to make that dream come true, with a focus on top-down, one-piece construction, a method that many favor.”
I would also add, because top-down sweaters require very little seaming. So, if you enjoy a project with very little finishing, and fantastic drape, this technique is for you!
Crochet sweaters with minimal finishing
The top-down construction method allows you to make your sweater all in one piece. You begin at the neckline and work around the shoulders until you’ve made enough length to get just under your arms.
Then you work the sweater body, leaving out the stitches that are needed for the sleeves. Once the sweater body is complete, you go back and add each sleeve by stitching right onto the stitches you left out at the end of the yoke. There is sometimes a bit of seaming at the underarm, but not much.
So this is an excellent construction method for those that don’t want to sew the sweater together.
The sweater patterns
The first sections of this crochet pattern book are geared towards helping less-experienced crocheters succeed. If you are new to crocheting sweaters, or to this construction method, you’ll want to spend some time looking through these chapters.
Next come the patterns, my favorite part! There are 14 sweater patterns in this book, but they are arranged in pairs that have very similar characteristics. All are pretty classic sweaters. I could see myself wearing any of the tops in this book.
When you finish your sweater, you’ll get to enjoy wearing it for years and years without being out of style, a big plus if you’re going to put the time and money into making it!
Here are some of my favorites:
Bettina looks comfy. I think this will be the first one that I make from this book. This looks like the kind of sweater I could enjoy having in multiple colors and wearing often. It’s made in Patons Lace, an acrylic/mohair/wool blend, with an F/5/3.75 mm crochet hook. Available sizes include 35, 40, 45, and 49 inch bust circumferences.
Isola strikes me as a nice dressy top. I could love wearing this over a camisole when going out on a date with my sweetheart! This one is written in sizes 34, 37, 42 1/2, and 48 inch bust circumferences. The yarn is Designing Vashti Lotus, a cotton/rayon blend yarn, and uses an E/4/3.5 mm crochet hook.
Janelle is another comfy sweater like Bettina. I would love having this in my wardrobe! I am always chilly when I go out to eat, or at church, or lots of other places, so this would be my sweater to take everywhere for when I need an extra layer. It is written in sizes 37 1/2, 41, 45, and 51 inch bust circumferences. The yarn is Debbie Bliss Juliet, a cotton/acrylic blend, and uses an I/9/5.5 mm crochet hook.
Also, in this book, you’re going to find stitch charts sprinkled throughout to show you visually how the stitches fit together. In the back you’ll find an abbreviation key and an index. There’s really lots to love in this book, especially if you’re looking to expand your crochet skills into garment making. These sweaters would make great options for your first sweater!
More crochet sweater patterns
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