I used to have a permanent bookmark in my browser for a now defunct website that would produce a simple sweater or cardigan pattern. You would put in the tension of your yarn and the measurements that you wanted for your sweater, and the website would do all the calculations for you. Such a sweater calculator is great when you write your own patterns, but also for those who need to change an pattern to the size they want.
Unfortunately, the website shut down, and it was back to doing all those calculations one by one in a spreadsheet!
Until I found this website: www.knittingfool.com. Knittingfool is run by Elaine Lyons, a blogger and knitter from 'near a small town in central Illinois'. Elaine provides all her information for free - and there is so much to choose from, it is worth having a look.She has collected an enormous number of patterns, from A as in Acorn (7 different types of Acorn stitch!) to Z as in Zigzag lace and Zigzag with Bobbles and everything in between. This collection is nothing short of brilliant.
Elaine also offers three basic sweater pattern generators: for a 'Drop Sleeve Gansey', a 'Set-in Sleeve Pullover' and a 'Top-Down Raglan Pullover'. Just like on my old favourite website, you can put in needle size, stitch gauge (tension) and chest measurement. Then add whether you like your garment to be a snug, comfortable or loose fit, click submit and hey, presto - there is your sweater pattern!
And all this is for free. A big thank you to Elaine Lyons and her incredible generosity!
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