Sweater Knitting Challenge: Day 1 – Measuring

It’s Day 1 of the 30 Day Sweater Knitting Challenge, where I’ll be knitting a custom fit sweater in 30 days.

Sound impossible?

You’re probably right.

I’ve got a business to run, a store to manage, employees to oversee, customers to help, and on top of all that, I have an 18 month old and a newborn baby at home.

But I’m confident, that with just a little bit of focus we can achieve sweater knitting success!

My plan is to spend about an hour to 90 minutes per day knitting on the sweater.

Each day I’ll be giving you progress updates here, on our YouTube channel, and through our email newsletter.

You’ll see exactly how I go about designing my sweater and what it really takes to knit a sweater in 30 days.

I’ll be using the 30 Day Sweater Framework, which is an online course my wife Lacie and I put together to teach you how to knit a sweater in 30 simple steps. (Get Access To The Course)

Sweater Knitting Challenge Day 1: How To Measure For A Sweater

The first step on our sweater knitting journey is to make sure we have accurate measurements.

Since I’m design my sweater from the ground up, instead of knitting from a pre-determined pattern, my finished sweater will be knit using my measurements.

This means I’ll have a custom fit that would not be as easily achieved by knitting from someone else’s pattern.

I’ve made a little video on who to properly do the measurements, and walk through each of the different measurements we’re taking and why.

There are 13 measurements overall that we’re taking to achieve a perfect fit.

  1. Bust/ Chest
  2. Waist
  3. Hips
  4. Crossback
  5. Upper Arm/ Bicep
  6. Wrist
  7. Back of Neck to Waist
  8. Shoulder
  9. Center Back Neck to Wrist
  10. Front Neck to Waist
  11. Waist to Underarm
  12. Neck Width
  13. Wrist to Underarm
Johnny's 30 Day Sweater Knitting Measurement Worksheet

Here’s my finished sweater measurement worksheet. (The worksheet is available in the course)


Clearly I’m a big guy, so there’s going to be A LOT of knitting involved in this sweater.

The Sweater Design

There are lots of elements that one should consider when taking on a sweater knitting project.

  • The climate
  • The fiber content of the yarn
  • The weight of the yarn
  • The drape of the fabric
  • The color you’re using
  • The style of sweater and how it looks on you

Today we’re going to focus on the style and tomorrow we’ll dive deeper in to elements affected by the yarn.

I already have a sweater from Old Navy that I love.

Old Navy Cardigan Sweater

Unfortunately it does not look like that on me


I purchased the sweater for our trip to Paris last fall and I chose it because it was a light weight, wool/cotton/acrylic blend that would be easy to travel with.

It worked out beautifully and I still wear it all the time.

So I figured why not make another sweater just like it, but in a different color.

The Sweater Details

This is going to be a shawl collar cardigan, predominately in stockinette, with ribbing along the cuff and hem.

I’ll be folding over the edge of the button band and shawl collar, so we’ll be knitting extra width in those areas.

I’ll also be creating button holes in the fabric along the button band. I’ve not decide if the holes will be vertical or horizontal, but I will be reinforcing them by sewing them. This will also allow the double layered button band to be held more securely together.

30 Day Sweater Knitting Challenge Design

I messed up my shawl collar drawing, so I scribbled it in.


I’m not going to do any pockets on this sweater, since I don’t really use pockets on sweaters.

I’ll be using the measurements from earlier throughout the process to make sure I have a customized fit.

The original sweater fits pretty well, but could definitely be tightened up to fit better.

This sweater should be perfect.

Next Steps

I’ll be working on my gauge swatch tomorrow and talking more in depth about my yarn choice.

If you want to join along, remember you can get access to the course I’m using, The 30 Day Sweater for just $75. But only during this challenge.

It includes all of the worksheets, videos, and step-by-step instructions you’ll need to knit a custom fit sweater in 30 simple steps.

Get my course now!


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