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American doll fair isle sweater knitting pattern

It seems I have been hibernating the past few weeks and I admit: I have not had a decent blog post about a craft “project” for a while.  Actually, I have not been sitting still at all.  For some time I felt the need to expand my knitting creativity by designing and writing my OWN pattern. No, this is not easy to do: you need a good eye for detail and have to be very precise.  After writing down my own design, I look at patterns in a different way and I have a renewed admiration for knitting and crochet designers..that’s for sure!


My first project is for an 18″ doll (American Girl Doll or Gotz).  You may wonder: how many doll sweater, hat and pants patterns are there?  Yes, there are  plenty out there, but as with adult sweaters and hats: knitting patterns always change. Different yarns are used, different stitch combinations or different colors and knitting (or crochet) patterns are re-written and adjusted.  For this design I used up yarns in my stash,  and with the gauge information I am sure you will be able to find a substitute yarn.

Here is my own Doll Outfit:  a sweater with a knit in fair isle design, a matching pants, hat, bag in seed stitch and a pair of small booties.  It was fun to design and make it, I am not completely done with transferring all the patterns onto pdf files, but this post comes with a free pattern of the sweater.  I started with knitting a doll’s book bag:

american girl hand knit book bag

And I just continued designing, re-writing and knitting until I had a complete outfit:

american girl hand knit outfit

18" doll knit outfit

american girl hand knit sweater pants

hand knit doll hat

american girl knitting pattern

Can you tell I had fun photographing this doll?

american girl 18" knitting

As promised the knitting pattern of the Fair Isle sweater.  The entire pattern will be available at a later date on either my blog or  I call this pattern the Dina Fair Isle Outfit, named after my grandmother who was ALWAYS knitting, or crocheting!  The sweater is quite boxy, and easy for small fingers to put it on or take off.


american girl knit sweater





Abbreviations:   beg=beginning; CO=cast on; K=knit; Kfb= knit front and back; K2tog=knit 2 together; P=purl; RS=right side; rep=repeat; St(s)=stitch(es); stitch; WR=wrong side; YO=yarn over


Measurement:  to fit 18” (46 cm) doll


Materials Needed:   Fine Weight Yarn

Color A: 2 oz. (56 g) yellow wool or wool mix

Color B: 1 oz. (28 g) grape purple wool or wool mix


Gauge:  with size US 2 (3 mm) in 25 sts and 33 rows = 4” (10 cm)


Knitting Needles:  sz. US 2 (3 mm)


Two snaps for sweater closure


Front:  with color A. CO 48 sts.

Row 1:  *K1, P1* rep between * till end of row

Rows 2-4: continue ribbing (K1, P1).  Increase 3 sts in last row to 51 sts


Row 5: with color A and B follow Fair Isle chart.  1 square equals 1 stitch.  As you can see on the chart, the pattern is a repeat from st 2 – st 13.   Rep. rows 2-11 four (4) times.

When front piece measures 5.5” Continue 1” with color A in until piece measures 6.5”.

Bind off all stitches.



Back: with color A. CO 48 sts.

Row 1: *K1, P1* rep between * till end of row

Rows 2-4: continue ribbing (K1, P1).  Increase 3 sts in last row to 51 sts

Continue with color A in stockinette stitch until back measures 6”.

Bind off all stitches.


Sleeves (make two): with color A. CO 26 sts.

Row 1: *K1, P1* rep between * till end of row

Row 6: K1,  Kfb, knit to last 2 sts., Kfb, K1

Increase 1 sts. On both sides every 6 row until you count 36 sts.

Work until sleeve measures 4” from beginning.  Bind off all stitches.



Front part of sweater:  fold and sew ½” at top to the inside.

Sew snaps (or attach Velcro) on both front and back shoulders.

Sew side seams of sleeves and attach sleeves in sleeve opening.  Sew side seams and weave in ends of yarn.


Thank you for reading my blog post and please leave a blog comment, I always appreciate that!


Link parties:

  1. That is just so brilliant! And the doll looks just like you when we were young 🙂 Forwarding your blog to my knitting aunt!

  2. Oh my goodness, what a sweet little outfit! I love the sweater design and the bag just totally completes the outfit. You are very talented my friend!

  3. Wat beeldig Het, je bent een heuse brei”ster”!

  4. Sooooo cute! I love the the sweater and the purse! Adorable! Thanks for sharing at the Submarine Sunday Link Party!

    • Thanks T’onna! Your blog comment is much appreciated!

  5. Leuk setje heb je gemaakt. Wel een hele klus om een patroon uit te schrijven, en te maken.

  6. Congratulations! This post is featured over at Diana Rambles today and has been pinned in the Featured at Diana Rambles board at Pinterest, Tweeted, and Shared on G+. Please grab a featured button off my button page or via the post guidelines graphic. Thanks for sharing this awesome idea!

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