Stability: Sweaters in the Round

I’m using Melissa Leapman’s excellent book, 6,000+ Pullover Possibilities, to design a tunic for myself. It will have shaping, inset bell sleeves, and a slit neckline. I’m using a 100% superwash DK wool, and I know it will grow over time.

I love knitting in the round because I’m not a fan of seaming.

But I’m also wondering if it’s worth knitting this project flat to lend some stability to it.

Pros: It’s faster to knit in the round
Millions of our Nordic friends can’t be wrong in knitting everything in the round!

Cons: Will it be stable enough?
Superwash. Ugh. I know it’s going to grow and lose it’s shape.

Thoughts anyone?

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If it is a “flowy” tunic, I might do in the round, if more fitted you really might be happier in the end with seams–or add a stitch pattern like linen stitch or something for a bit of structure (maybe)


Thank you so much!

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I use a method described by Karen Templar on her blog (google Fringe Association). She uses what she calls a basting stitch - add a purl stitch where seams would go, knit in the round as usual, then sew up the ‘seam’ created by the purl stitch. She describes it well with lots of pictures. I love it - the ease of knitting in the round combined with the structural boost a seam gives, especially knitting with SW or something that will droop over time.


YES! I looked at that. Have you tried it? I’m trying to decide if that is the way to go or if I should knit it flat and seam it. It seems like either way I have to “seam”.

Thanks so much for your quick response. I appreciate it so much.


I’ve done it on a couple of sweaters now. I find the ‘seaming’ is easier and smoother than actually seaming pieces together. And no altering the pattern or figuring out selvage stitches. I like to knit sleeves flat (that’s Barbara Walker’s technique I think) but for me, for sides and raglans I think the basting stitch is the way to go.


I do the same, I have several sweater or cargi patterns which I’ve converted to in the round from by pieces/seaming, and I use the extra stitch on the sides to add structure and make the sweater a little more rigid (helps retain some of the shape). I really hate sewing up seams after knitting a sweater, so this is my go to methodology.