When it comes to knitting sweaters, you have a few different options for construction. One popular method is to knit the sweater flat in pieces and then seam them together, while another popular method is to knit the sweater in the round from the top down as one piece. Both methods have their pros and cons, but in terms of structure, there are a few reasons why sweaters knit flat in pieces tend to have a better result.
First, knitting a sweater flat in pieces allows you to shape the garment more precisely. When you knit a sweater in the round, you are limited to increasing and decreasing in a circular pattern, which can make it difficult to create a tailored fit. Knitting a sweater flat in pieces, on the other hand, allows you to shape the garment with more precision, as you can increase and decrease in a straight line and create a more customized fit.
Second, knitting a sweater flat in pieces allows you to create more defined and distinct panels, such as the front, back, and sleeves. This can give the sweater a more structured and polished look, as the panels are clearly defined and separated. When you knit a sweater in the round, it can be more difficult to create distinct panels, as the stitches flow seamlessly from one section to the next.
Finally, knitting a sweater flat in pieces allows you to use short rows to shape the garment and create a better fit, and they are much easier to work when knitting flat than knitting in the round.
Of course, there are also pros to knitting a sweater in the round, such as the lack of seaming and the opportunity to try on the garment as you go. However, in terms of structure and fit, sweaters knit flat in pieces tend to have a more polished and tailored result.
In conclusion, while both methods of knitting a sweater have their advantages, sweaters knit flat in pieces tend to have a better structure and fit due to the ability to shape the garment more precisely, create distinct panels, and take advantage of techniques like short rows.