I’ve always liked different construction methods, for garments, accessories, or whatever. It’s interesting to find better ways to make things, and sometimes the better way differs depending upon what’s being made. In terms of sweaters, I favor seamless construction whenever possible, to avoid excessive casting on, binding off and picking up. It’s not that I mind seaming, and sometimes I can see the advantage of the structure gained in a seamed piece; I chose to keep the seams when I knit my Plummi, because it was such a long, heavy sweatercoat. I also think nothing can beat a picked-up button band, where you can control the tension of the band versus the body, despite the anguish of getting the right number and interval of stitches.
But in general, I like seamless construction from the top down, so you can try it on as you go and make adjustments along the way. Recently, the innovative SusieM developed a new seamless top down construction method she christened Contiguous, and she shared it on Ravelry in the Contiguous group. Brilliantly, it involves casting on the back neck stitches and a very small number for the fronts, then increasing rapidly along both sides of the shoulder seam to shape the fronts and back. When the shoulder tip is reached, that “seam” is split into two armhole lines, with further increasing to shape the sleeve and later the armhole.
I’ve finally managed to struggle free of knitting obligations in order to begin a Contiguous cardigan of my own. After some initial mathing, and then remathing after trying out various increase methods, I cast on with RYC Cashsoft 4 Ply in a beautiful pale grey Weather color. I plan to chronicle the Journey through Contiguous in a WIP Wednesday series here.