Mobile Menu IconMenu
Free Knitting and Crochet Patterns from Elaine Phillips

Top-Down Seamless Dress

Difficulty level: *** Intermediate

Free Dress Knitting Pattern

The dress is worked from the top-down in rounds without seams in stockinette stitch - all rounds knit. First the dress is worked in rounds till the breast line, where several short rows are worked in order to shape the back neckline. Then the stitches are divided for front, sleeves and back. The sleeve sts are transfered on a length of waste yarn. Underarm stistes are cast on and the work goes on in round. To shape waste and hips several decreases and increases are made. The hem of the skirt is worked in garter stitch. Then the sleeve sts are transfered on needles and worked in rounds, top-down.

Sizes: S (M, L, XL)

Skills Required/Techniques Used:
---Knit & purl, cast on & bind off
-Increasing: make 1 (m1)
-Decreasing: knit 2 together (k2tog), slip-slip-knit (ssk)
-Working in the round on double pointed needles
-Picking up stitches

FINISHED MEASUREMENTS
Chest: 36 [40, 44, 48, 52, 56] inches (90 [100, 110, 120, 130, 140] cm)
Upper arm circ: 11 [12, 14, 16, 17.25, 18] inches (28 [30, 35, 40, 43, 45] cm)
Hip: 38 [42, 46, 50, 54, 58] inches (95 [105, 115, 125, 135, 145] cm)

Materials: Jo-Ann Sensations (affiliate link) (affiliate link) Rainbow Boucle worsted weight yarn 853 yards (780 meters)/312 grams - 3 balls.

Needles: US #4 (3.5 mm) circular needles OR SIZE NEEDED TO OBTAIN GAUGE

Gauge: 16 sts x 24 rows = 10 x 10 cm (4" x 4") in stockinette st

Notions:
yarn needle, stitch marker

Abbreviations:
dpn – double pointed needles
K – knit
P – purl
k2tog - knit 2 together
ssk - sli-slip-knit
St, sts – stitch, stitches
pu&k - pick up and knit
as est. - as established, work as the pattern demands
co – cast on
RS – right side
WS – wrong side
m 1 - make 1 increase - I used the increase described by Elizabeth Zimmerman: make a backward loop over the right-hand needle and in the next row/round purl/knit it as a regular stitch.
pm - place marker
sm - slip marker

Pattern Notes:

Stockinette Stitch in rows:
Row 1 (RS): knit
Row 2 (WS): purl
Repeat row 1-2

Stockinette in rounds: all rounds knit

Garter Stitch in rounds:
Round 1: knit
Round 2: purl
Repeat 2 rounds

The selvedge/edge stitches are worked as follows: knit the first stitch of the row and purl the last one.

All increases are made by make 1 (m1), described above, to avoid holes.

Decreases on the bodice are made by knitting 2 sts together (k2tog).

Decreases on sleeves are made by k2tog and slip-slip-knit (ssk)


Short overview of the pattern:

The dress is worked from the top-down in rounds without seams in stockinette stitch - all rounds knit. First the dress is worked in rounds till the breast line, where several short rows are worked in order to shape the back neckline. Then the stitches are divided for front, sleeves and back. The sleeve sts are transfered on a length of waste yarn. Underarm stistes are cast on and the work goes on in round. To shape waste and hips several decreases and increases are made. The hem of the skirt is worked in garter stitch. Then the sleeve sts are transfered on needles and worked in rounds, top-down.

Dress

Yoke

Cast on 58 (60, 62, 64) st, join into circle and continue to work in rounds. Place marker (pm) to mark the beginning of the round. The beginning of the round is at front between the front and left sleeve. Slip marker (sm) while working.

Knit one foundation round.

Round1 (1st increase round): *k2, m1, repeat to the end of the round. = 87 (90, 93, 96) sts.

Work 9 (9, 9, 11) rounds: knit around.

2nd increase round:

For all sizes: *k2, m1, repeat to the end of the round. When /if 1 st is left to the ends of the round, knit it.

Total stitches after 2nd increase round: 130 (135, 139, 144) sts.

Work 9 (9, 9, 11) rounds: knit all sts.

3rd increase round:

For all sizes: *k3, m1, repeat to the end of the round. When /if 1 st is left to the ends of the round, knit it.

Total after 3rd increase round: 173 (180, 185, 192) sts.

Work 9 (9, 9, 11) rounds: knit all sts.

4th increase round:

For size S: *k19, m1, repeat 9 times, k2. = 182 sts

For size M: *k9, m1, repeat from *to the end of the round. = 200 sts

For size L: *k4, m1, repeat from * to last 5 sts of the round, k5. = 230

For sizes XL, *k3, m1, repeat to the end of the round. = 256

Total after 4th increase round: 182 (200, 230, 256) sts.

Work 9 (9, 9, 11) rounds: knit all sts.


Neckline Shaping with Short Rows

Short row 1: k 123 (134, 155, 174,) sts, w&t.

Short row 2: p 120 (131, 152, 171,) sts, w&t.

Short row 3: k 117 (128, 149, 168,) sts, w&t.

Short row 4: p 114 (125, 146, 165,) sts, w&t.

Short row 5: k 111 (122, 143, 162,) sts, w&t.

Short row 6: p 105 (116, 137, 156,) sts, w&t.

Next round: work RS round to the end, picking up the wraps and working them together with the stitch they were wrapped around.

Work one more round.


Divide for Sleeves and Bodice: count the sts and place markers

Transfer 32 (34, 41, 47) sts of the left sleeve to a length of yarn, cast on 11 (12, 13, 15) sts with the single cast on, knit 59 (66, 73, 80) sts of the back, transfer 32 (34, 41, 47) sts of the right sleeve to a length of yarn, cast on 11 (12, 13, 15) sts with the single cast on, knit 59 (66, 75, 82) sts of the front. Place a marker in the middle of left underarm sts (if the number is odd for some sizes, place the marker one st closer to front). Total sts after division 140 (156, 174, 192) sts.

Round begins after the 5th (6th, 6th, 7th) left underarm st.

Work 24 rounds.


Waist Shaping

1st decrease round: decrease for 1 st by working k2tog at the side seams placement and at the 1/3 and 2/3 of back and front (total 6 sts decreased).

1st decrease round:

S size: k2tog, k22, k2tog, k19, k2tog, k22, k2tog, k23, k2tog, k19, k2tog, k23. = 134 sts
M size: k2tog, k24, k2tog, k22, k2tog, k24, k2tog, k26, k2tog, k22, k2tog, k26. = 150 sts
L size: k2tog, k27, k2tog, k25, k2tog, k27, k2tog, k29, k2tog, k25, k2tog, k29. = 168 sts
XL size: k2tog, k30, k2tog, k28, k2tog, k30, k2tog, k32, k2tog, k28, k2tog, k32 = 186 sts

Work another 23 rounds as established.

2nd decrease round:
Size S: k2tog, k20, k2tog, k19, k2tog, k20, k2tog, k22, k2tog, k19, k2tog, k22. = 128 sts
Size M: k23, k2tog, k25, k2tog, k23, k2tog, k21, k2tog, k25, k2tog, k21, k2tog = 144sts
Size L: k2tog, k25, k2tog, k24, k2tog, k25, k2tog, k27, k2tog, k26, k2tog, k27 = 162sts
Size XL: k29, k2tog, k30, (k2tog, k29) twice, k2tog, k28, k2tog, k29, k2tog =180 sts


Hip Shaping

1st increase round
Size S: *16, m1 - repeat from * around = 136 sts
Size M: *k18, m1 - repeat from * around = 152 sts
Size L: (k20, m1) x 4 times, k21, m1, (k20, m1) x twice, k21, m1 = 170 sts
Size XL: (k22, m1) x 4 times, k24, m1, (k22, m1)x twice, k24, m1 = 188 sts

Work 10 (10, 11, 11) rounds.

2nd increase round:

Size S: *k17, m1 - repeat from * around = 144 sts
Size M: *k19, m1 - repeat around = 160 sts
Size L: (k21, m1) x 4 times, k22, m1, (k21, m1)x twice, k22, m1 = 178 sts
Size XL: (k24, m1) x 4 times, k26, m1, (k24, m1)x twice, k26, m1 = 196 sts

Work 10 (10, 11, 11) rounds.

3rd increase round:

Size S: *18, m1 - repeat from * around = 152 sts
Size M: *k20, m1 repeat from * around= 168 sts
Size L: (k22, m1) x 4 times, k23, m1, (k22, m1)x twice, k23, m1 = 186 sts
Size XL: (k24, m1) x 4 times, k26, m1, (k24, m1)x twice, k26, m1 = 204 sts


Skirt

Continue to work the skirt in rounds. Total rounds for skirt from waist 120 or to desired length.

At the same times work an increase round every 10th round, evenly adding 8 sts per round 10 times .

Work the last 20 rounds in garter sts: one round purl, the next round knit. Bind off.

You can vary the length and the width of the skirt by changing the amount of rows and increases below round 42.


Sleeves:

Sleeves are worked in rounds on circular or double pointed needles. Total number of rounds for sleeves: 112 (114, 116, 116).

Transfer 32 (34, 41, 47) sts from the length of yarn to the needles, pu&k 11 (12, 13, 15) sts over cast-on underarm sts. = 43 (46, 54, 62) sts. Place a marker at the beginning of the round, it begins in the middle of the underqarm sts: between the 5th and 6th (6th and 6th, 6th and 7th, 7th and 8th). Slip marker white working

Knit 7 rounds. Start decreasing by 2 sts in every 8th round (rounds 8, 16, 24, 32, 40, 48, 56, 64):

S , L and XL sizes: sm, k2tog, knit until the last 3 sts, ssk, k1.

M size: sm, k2tog, knit around until the last 2 sts, ssk.

After round 64 you have 27 (30, 38, 46) sts left.

Rounds 65-92 (94, 96, 96): knit.

Work the next 20 rounds in garter stitch: odd rounds knit, even rounds purl. Bind off.

You can vary the length and the width of the sleeve by changing the amount of rounds and decreases.


Neckline:

To finish the neckline, starting from the middle of the back, pu&k 58 (60, 62, 64) sts , place a marker at the beginning of the round, slip marker while working. Work 10 rounds in 1x1 rib: *k1, p1 - repeat from * around. Bind off.


Finishing:

Weave in all yarn ends.

Diagram


Download PDF  




Comments

There are 9 total comments on this article.

Leave a comment about the article.
Poster: linda
June 5, 2017

I assume this is being knitted on a circular needle????
Poster: Sabine Winter
October 1, 2014

No you are not correct. When knitting in rounds, you knit all the time . The only time you purl is, when you are going back and forth.
Knitting in rounds means knit only unless otherwise stated. I hope this helps
Sabine
Poster: Mrs. Rod Warnke
October 20, 2014

I ave been knitting my rounds since starting this. Thank you.
Poster: Mrs. Rod Warnke
January 17, 2015

The dress is knit in the round. This results in all knits on one side and all purl on the other other. Until you separate off the arms. Then you go back and forth for a few rows before going around and around again for the length. Ian going to steek pockets into mine.
Poster: Gail Chase
January 31, 2015

Lucy, I hope you received a response to your question by now. If not, you use stocking stitch (or stockinette) in the section that says "divide for sleeves." There are a few rows of stocking stitch on the back, because the stitches are being worked back and forth rather than in the round.

I hope that's clear!
Poster: Mrs. Rod Warnke
January 11, 2015

I made good progress over winter break. I fear thing will slow when I go back to school tomorrow. Making the skirt of the dress wider. Love how it looks so far. Considering, taller collar( more like a turtle neck, and steaking for pockets, I need pockets.
Poster: Lucy Keller
October 1, 2014

I have read the pattern over twice and I do not see where you actually use the "stocking stitch" that you list as a pattern stitch. Why is it shown?
Poster: Mrs. Rod Warnke
July 15, 2014

The dress has garter ridges right? Since it is worked in the round, Knit a row, Purl a row makes garter ridges, am I correct?
Poster: Lisa Ogilvie
June 15, 2017

No, you are not correct. Stocking stitch in the round is knitting on straight needles, garter stitch in the round is stocking stitch on straight needles. Everything you know from working straight needles is opposite for knitting in the round. The pattern designer explains all of this pretty clearly at the beginning of the pattern.

If you liked this pattern, you might also like:


Summer Dress with the Round Yoke

Seamless Cable Dress

Summer Empire Waist Dress

Browse Similar Items by Category:

Patterns:Knit >> Dresses
Difficulty Level:3-Intermediate
Size:L
M
S
XL
Technique:Seamless
Top-Down
Yarn Weight:Worsted

Mailing List
Enter your e-mail to receive announcements of new free patterns:

Or follow us using: