Knit a Free Tunic Sweater Pattern

How to Knit a Simple Tunic Sweater
Mollie Johanson
  • 01 of 09

    Knit a Breezy Tunic for Summer

    A woman wearing a yellow cap sleeve tunic sweater
    Anna Johanson

    Sometimes you want to knit a sweater that's not too plain, but not too complicated. This cap-sleeve summer tunic sweater requires no shaping or complicated seaming, but still also has a lacy hem as a beautiful detail.

    You'll love the loose and comfortable fit, as well as the mindless stockinette stitch, worked in the round. Because the shape is straight, you can also adjust the sizing without much trouble.

    Ready to cast on? Choose your yarn and get started!

    Continue to 2 of 9 below.
  • 02 of 09

    Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater Information

    Graceful Waves Knitting Swatch
    Mollie Johanson

    Project Level

    Intermediate

    Sizing

    This tunic has a straight, loose fit with eight inches of positive ease. 

    XS (S, M, L, XL, XXL, 3XL). Shown in size M on a 36-inch bust.

    Tunic circumference: 36 (40, 44, 48, 52, 56, 60) inches.

    Tunic length: 26 (28, 30, 32, 32, 33, 33) inches.

    Materials

    Yarn: 2 (2, 3, 3, 3, 4, 4) skeins of Cheeky Merino Joy by Rosy Green Wool (100% Virgin Wool, Organic Merino Extra Fine; 350 yards/100g) or approx. 615 (700, 840, 980, 1080, 1140, 1240) yards of sportweight yarn

    Needles: US 4 circular needles.

    Other notions: Stitch markers, extra cable or waste yarn, tapestry needle.

    Gauge

    25 stitches and 34 rows to four-inch  in stockinette stitch on US 4 needles. 24 stitches and 24 rows to four-inch in pattern stitch. 

    For best results, knit a larger swatch. Then wash and block your swatch in the same way you will wash and block the sweater.

    Abbreviations

    Note

    This sweater starts with two separate lace sections for the hem. These sections come together and you knit the torso with stockinette stitch in the round. Finally, it splits to form the armholes before grafting together at the shoulders. 

    Continue to 3 of 9 below.
  • 03 of 09

    Cast On and Work the First Lace Section

    Knit the First Lace Section
    Mollie Johanson

    Using the long tail cast-on method, cast on 109 (121, 133, 145, 157, 169, 181) stitches for the back lace section. 

    Rows 1–4: Knit across the row.

    Row 5: K1, *(K2tog) 2 times, (YO, K1) 3 times, YO, (SSK) 2 times, K1; repeat from * across row.

    Row 6: Purl across the row.

    Row 7: K1, *(K2tog) 2 times, (YO, K1) 3 times, YO, (SSK) 2 times, K1; repeat from * across row.

    Row8: Purl across the row.

    Row 9: K1, *(K2tog) 2 times, (YO, K1) 3 times, YO, (SSK) 2 times, K1; repeat from * across row.

    Row 10: Purl across the row.

    Row 11: K1, *(K2tog) 2 times, (YO, K1) 3 times, YO, (SSK) 2 times, K1; repeat from * across row.

    Row 12: Purl across the row.

    Repeat rows 1–12 two more times for a total of 36 rows. Cut the yarn, leaving a tail of at least 12 inches.

    Continue to 4 of 9 below.
  • 04 of 09

    Cast On and Work the Second Lace Section

    Two lacy knit sections of a tunic
    Mollie Johanson

    Using the long tail cast-on method, cast on 109 (121, 133, 145, 157, 169, 181) stitches for the front lace section. Add this to the same circular knitting needle, making sure that you work so that the right sides of both pieces are facing the same direction. 

    Work the second section in the same way as the first, but do not cut the yarn.

    Continue to 5 of 9 below.
  • 05 of 09

    Knit the Torso in the Round

    A ball of yarn and two needles next to a torso of a tunic
    Mollie Johanson

    After working the last purl row of the front lace section, knit across the row. Place a stitch marker on the needle. 

    Instead of turning your work, knit across the back lace section to join the two pieces on one side. When you reach the end of this section, place a stitch marker on the needle. 

    Join up with the beginning of the front section by knitting the first stitch.

    Working in the round and slipping the markers as needed, knit every stitch until the piece measures 11 (12, 13, 14, 14, 15, 15) inches.

    If you wish to alter the length of the sweater, you can work more or fewer rows here or in the next step.

    Continue to 6 of 9 below.
  • 06 of 09

    Split and Knit the Front and Back

    Knitting the front and back of the tunic
    Mollie Johanson

    Stop knitting at the stitch marker at the end of the back. Place the back stitches (between the stitch markers) on an extra cable or piece of waste yarn. 

    Working on the front stitches, work in the following pattern:

    Row 1: Knit across the row. 

    Row 2: K3, P to last 3 stitches, K3.

    Repeat rows 1 and 2 for 9 (10, 11, 12, 12, 12, 12) inches. If you wish to alter the length of the sweater or the loose, open armholes, you can work more or fewer rows here.

    Rows 3–6: Knit across the row.

    Cut the yarn, leaving a tail of about 3 yards. Place the front piece on an extra cable or piece of waste yarn, then transfer the back stitches to the needles. 

    Repeat the pattern above for the back section. Place the front stitches on the circular needle with the back stitches.

    Continue to 7 of 9 below.
  • 07 of 09

    Graft the Shoulders Together

    Grafting the shoulders of a tunic together with three needles
    Mollie Johanson

    Using the active yarn, graft the first shoulder together using kitchener stitch

    Graft 30 (35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60) stitches together. 

    Continue to 8 of 9 below.
  • 08 of 09

    Bind Off Stitches on the Neckline

    Two knitting needles in chartreuse yarn
    Mollie Johanson

    Working on the back of the neck, bind off 49 (51, 53, 55, 57, 59, 61) stitches. End off the yarn. 

    Turn the sweater around and repeat the shoulder grafting, this time working with the long tail of yarn. Bind off the remaining stitches.

    Weave in all the ends and wet block the sweater.

    Continue to 9 of 9 below.
  • 09 of 09

    Wearing the Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater

    A woman wearing a finished version of the Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater Pattern
    Anna Johanson

    This sweater looks great with a tank underneath and a pair of slim jeans. It also pairs well with pencil skirts. And because it's light, you can wear it throughout the summer or layer it in the winter!

    Add the Graceful Waves Tunic Sweater to your Ravelry queue.