CH 64: How to Knit Gorgeous Sweaters with Amy Herzog

Helen —  February 27, 2015 — 37 Comments
Play

Curious Handmade Podcast 64

 

Today I have a special guest on the show – she is someone I have mentioned many times recently and is the perfect guest for this month’s theme. She openly admits to having a sweater problem – of course its Amy Herzog

Show Sponsor

Meadow Yarn

 

In the spirit of the theme of sweater month I ask Anj, the owner of Meadow yarn about her sweater knitting. Anj replied saying:

“Just about our favourite thing to knit is a sweater… The options are infinite and the result always hugely satisfying, whether it’s a fine fair isle or a chunky quick-knit it’s always a pleasure to see a finished sweater roll off the needles. At the moment with temperatures sub-zero we’re thinking about Icelandic Lopi yarn… used to create traditional Icelandic ‘Yoked’ sweaters, known as Lopapeysas, they remain hugely popular with knitters around the world and contemplating the endless shade combinations – from the traditional ‘naturals’ to the vivid, jewel- bright colours – is just about the best fun we have on a chilly day at Meadow Yarn!”

You can purchase Icelandic Lopi yarn and other gorgeous products at meadowyarn.co.uk

I ordered some gorgeous Lopi from Meadow Yarn this week to make the Reyka Pullover from Magpies, Homebodies and Nomads.

Amy Herzog and Sweater Knitting

I’m excited to share my conversation with Amy Herzog who is the creator of Custom Fit, the author of two books – Knit to Flatter and a new one about to be released, as well as teaching workshops to help knitters make sweaters they will love to wear including at Squam – which is where I did Amy’s sweater fit class last year.

Amy Herzog Squam class

Amy teaching at Squam last year and demonstrating fit of different sweater samples.

It was great to get to try on lots of samples in the class and see what suited us.

Amy Herzog Swatches

Amy really does love to swatch! A pile of swatches she brought to the Squam class to demonstrate knitted fabric and fibres.

You can find Amy Herzog and the things we talked about in the episode here:

Amy Herzog Blog

Custom Fit – Custom Sweater Generator

Knit to Flatter: The Only Instructions You’ll Ever Need to Knit Sweaters that make You Look Good and Feel Great!

Craftsy Class – Knit to Flatter
(my affiliate link)

Amy’s Squam Body and Soul Class

37 responses to CH 64: How to Knit Gorgeous Sweaters with Amy Herzog

  1. I really enjoyed the interview. My 2015 knitting goal is to make myself a sweater. I have Amy’s book and will be using it to help me get started. She had so many important things to say in your discussion. I liked her comment about finding a yarn I am comfortable with. That makes so much sense. Why struggle using an unusual yarn while you are developing sweater making skills? Thanks again for your focus on sweaters. Listening to Amy was the frosting on the cake!

  2. I adore Amy and have her book and Craftsy class but have not tried the pattern generator – I would love to win this-
    Just discovered your podcast – I am loving it and slowly catching up-

  3. One of my goals for this year is to knit my first sweater and I’m happy to say I recently finished it and have even worn it twice! Learned a lot but have a long way to go. Sweater knitting feels like a risky investment in time and money because lots can go wrong-fit, style, etc. Amy’s custom fit concept makes so much sense and seems like it would eliminate a lot of stress in the sweater knitting process.

  4. It is interesting, I have never really feared sweater knitting and while I have had a couple not so perfect results, it has been more design flaws than gauge issues (like knitting for my husband and not knowing that I cannot make the sweater the same as footprint of a cotton pullover, the fabric is thicker and needs more ease to fit comfortably (made the sleeves too tight) or that wide open cardigans fall off my shoulders because of my body shape).

    Starting with the second sweater I knitted for myself (first one was in 8th grade), I have always jiggled the numbers to fit my gauge and then to fit my body. I loved it when Amy Herzog said that you have to get fabric what you like. This verbalizes something I have felt for years!

  5. I really enjoyed the interview with Amy Herzog – and I love her approach to sweater design.
    I have read her book, and have registered on the custom fit site – but have not yet invested in a pattern. I would love to, though, as I have this great alpaca yarn that I could not find a pattern for that I really want to knit

  6. I’ve knit one sweater so far – for my boyfriend. I know, madness. I’m going to attempt a V back one for myself but I think my next one will have to be a Custom Fit one. Amy looks so good in all those photos!

  7. Great episode! I was starting to feel a bit lazy about using the same few yarns so often, so I really loved Amy’s comments about that… my favorite thing about it is not having to reswatch every time! Is that cheating? 🙂 I think as a knitter I am ready to start learning how to build sweaters with the details I choose, rather than being completely tied to a pattern. Thanks to you and Amy for helping me start thinking about this…

  8. I have Amy’s book, taken her craftsy class, and took a class with her at vogue knitting live. She has given me the confidence to not only knit sweaters, but to be very comfortable with modifying them and using yarn that does not get the same gauge as the pattern, but gives me the fabric I want. So thankful for all her tips and advise. Now I wear sweaters that I am proud of!

  9. This was such a timely discussion for me as I just had my measurements taken by Lauren of the Custom Fit Team at Stitches West! I am working on my swatch and so excited to soon be starting my first sweater! It was so interesting to hear Amy explain the program first hand! Thank you so much for a chance to win a Custom Fit pattern!

  10. I would to win this Thanks, amy is brilliant

  11. Lynda Thompson March 1, 2015 at 12:06 pm

    Great interview, thank you. I have made sweaters, with varying degrees of success (and quite a lot of luck I think!). I think I’m probably in denial about my body measurements though and Amy’s advice to get someone to measure me accurately is something I must do. I’ve realised as well that I tend to wear cardigans a lot more than sweaters, I always get too warm, so I will be looking for some nice cardigan patterns to make once I have my measurements. Can’t wait to see your finished sweater Helen, I hope it fits well!

  12. Since taking Amy’s Craftsy class, I’ve been much braver about making alterations to patterns – the real lightbulb for me was when she said that ladies who think they have no waist (me) often do have curves in their back, and that rather than having an unflattering sack hanging from the shoulders with no waist shaping, you can put waist shaping only on the back for a much more flattering fit. So I’ve done that on a few sweaters now and it really does make a difference. I’ve also used my measurements from the class to shorten sleeves to fit me better, and to judge where to start a v-neckline.

  13. Love sweater knitting and would love to try custom fit!

  14. Another brilliant podcast episode Helen. I really want to make a custom fit sweater, I just love the idea of a pattern just for me with no maths or thinking about sizing or shaping involved.

  15. One of my New Years Resolutions is to knit a custom fit pattern. I am 1/2 way through the Craftsy class.

  16. Rosemary Herlihy March 2, 2015 at 2:57 am

    Hi Helen
    Great podcast, timely, informative. I’d love to win a custom fit sweater pattern. Thanks for this opportunity.
    Rosemary

  17. I loved the interview. I already knew Amy Herzog and her approach to sweater knitting, even if only via the internet and she’s one of my favourite authors. I’ve been wanting to try out custom fit for a while and haven’t got around to it yet, but her book and craftsy class have already helped me imensely. I actually like gauge math, and I usually do the swatches for my next project before I finish the current one, so no waiting period. I discovered Amy when I was trying to figure out how to shape my first sweater (after being disapointed by it’s A-line shape), and the explanations she had on her blog not only helped me on that sweater, but on every sweater I knit since.
    Thank you for this chance to finally try custom fit.

  18. I enjoyed hearing the details about how Custom Fit works. Knowing a bit about it all makes me feel more confident to try it all out. It seems a dream to be able to knit a sweater to my own swatch.

  19. Linda Landine March 2, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Great interview. I have Amy’s book and it was nice to hear her voice. I have used her custom fit service and am knitting New Towne cardigan right now. I would love to do another, thanks for the opportunity.

  20. Love your podcast and love knitting sweaters. I would really like the chance to try a custom fit sweater! Thank you for offering this really cool gift!!

  21. I have started hoarding sweater patterns but still have not had the confidence to cast on. I loved listening to the episode, lots of good advice. It is so true that we do not knit to flatter.
    We fall in love with the garment in the picture, on the tall, slim model frolicking in the woods /on the beach. Even though it will look totally different on a short, plump, middle-aged woman from the Midlands!
    Lots to think about, thank you.

  22. I love sewing and knitting garments. My favourite currently is cardigans. I enjoy trying new designers and techniques for each new project. Looking forward to do one of the custom fit sweaters in the near future. Thanks Amy and Helen!

  23. Terese Douglass March 2, 2015 at 10:03 pm

    I found this so interesting, as all of your episodes. I have such an issue with gauge. I can never get the gauge called for in the pattern and if I do it will radically change while I am knitting. I thought I was crazy, but I do the same thing when knitting socks so it is just something that I do. The idea of figuring out what you want to knit and then applying that to the pattern makes a lot of sense, but can be a bit time consuming if you do it on your own. That is why the Custom Fit service is quite wonderful.

    I do enjoy your energy and your knowledge and look forward to both the podcasts and the blog posts. Thank you for taking the time to share with us.
    Terese

  24. Thanks for another great podcast. I am afraid I am still a bit confused about the different ways Custom Fit can work. I like the concept though. Maybe I just need to do one to see. Thank you for the opportunity to win. If I don’t win, i may just have to buy one and try it out.
    tashbalaz on ravelry

  25. Patty Mulvihill March 3, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    Loved the interview and have made it my goal to do a custom fit sweater this year. I am presently knitting my first sweater, I usually knit accessories and socks, and am really enjoying the process. Thank you for your podcast, I love listening.

  26. Kathleen Connors March 3, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    Great interview! I have Amy’s book and have taken her Craftsy class, and have faithfully used her suggestions to alter my sweaters ever since. That’s not my strong suit, however, and would love to give CustomFit a try!

  27. I have yet to knit a sweater because the whole idea scares me. To spend that much time and money on something and then not have it be wearable…it’s too intimidating. I purchased Amy’s Craftsy class, but haven’t yet watched it. I would love to win a custom fit! Thank you for the wonderful podcast. I so enjoy listen to you, Helen.

  28. Love Amy Hertzog! Got the craftsy class and am working my way through it. I would love to win a custom sweater pattern, I have already added my measurements to the website….

  29. In February I finished my first handknit sweater that I am proud of and willing to leave the house in. I’ve been inspired to knit more sweaters this year and your sweater month of podcast has got me excited to plan my next project.

    I have Amy’s book and will be using it to help customize sweaters- I’m already skilled at doing this with clothes and your interview with Amy helped give me more confidence that I can do this with some success. Also it’s just knitting… you can always rip it out if it’s not working!

  30. I’ve knit many sweaters – and I love wearing them. Sometimes it’s hard to chose just one.
    I’d love to try Amy’s technique

  31. I really want to try Amy Herzog’s Custom Fit, only I originally decided that I wouldn’t buy it until I had finished the two I’m currently working on.

    Then I decided to go back to University and I don’t have a knitting budget anymore!

    I keep hearing good things about it.

    Thank you for offering the chance to win it.

  32. I wasn’t even aware of the CustomFit website – have subscribed. Fantastic episode, thanks so much.

  33. Christine Eychas March 4, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    I am excited to create a sweater pattern using Amy’s program. We had a measuring get together last weekend and I am ready to go. Hoping I might snag the generous prize for a custom made sweater pattern, but if not I am still ready to generate a pattern as soon as possible! What a wonderful program.

  34. I love knitting sweaters. I did Amy’s crafty class and learned so much from it. And I like your podcasts so much, I am on board for some time now, and enjoy it.

  35. I am 3 different sweater sizes and I quite enjoy adjusting the patterns for my body, I am very tempted to take a closer look at Amy’s books after this interview

  36. Excellent interview with Amy; I really enjoyed it. I’ve been intending to make a Custom Fit classic sweater, and this episode pushed me over the edge to really do it. It’s all I’ve been able to think about since listening.

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  1. Ch 92: We won! (And lots of WIPs) | Curious Handmade Knitting Patterns - September 18, 2015

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