How to Divide for Body And Sleeves Raglan Sweater

Divide for body and sleeves raglan sweater

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Divide for body and sleeves – do you think it is difficult? Not at all! Real-time example in detail.

Separating for sleeves and body for a top-down raglan sweater

You will need:
  • crochet hook;
  • scrap yarn (for provisional cast-on and setting stitches aside);
  • darning needle.

raglan sweater sleeve and body separation


Step 1.

Finish knitting the yoke and get to the beginning of the row. In my case, schematically beginning of the row is in the picture below.


top down raglan sweater front back
Schematics of a top-down raglan sweater

Continue knitting the back of the sweater until you get to the sleeve. Don’t do increases at this point. I divided the raglan line equally between the back and front.

Step 2.

When I get to the sleeve part, I take darning needle and piece of scrap yarn to put all those stitches onto the scrap yarn.

Sleeve stitches set aside onto scrap yarn

Step 3.

Take a crochet hook and scrap yarn, cast on stitches for an underarm (in my case – 12 stitches) and a few more stitches for safety.


The back of the chain
The back of the chain. Can you see these little bumps? Pick up these bumps for provisional cast-on

proviional cast on for underarms

Try to tighten up first and last 2 underarm stitches to minimize gaps.

Step 4.

After you cast on enough stitches, join the front part and continue knitting until you get to the other sleeve.

After cast on underarm stitches join the front

Step 5.

Knit to the other sleeve and repeat steps 2-4.

After separating sleeves from the body, you are set for knitting the body in the round.


Picking up sleeve stitches without holes


Option 1.

Leave holes like they are and continue knitting sleeves and sew them after you finish. NOT my favorite option, though…

Option 2.

I will show my way of avoiding gaps. Always turned out neat and tidy. It is very easy because I use a simple trick – pick up a horizontal bar between stitches and knit them together! 

Step 1.

Unravel provisional cast-on. Get the stitches back onto the needle.

unravel provisional cast on
Get live stitches back onto the needle

Step 2.

Move all stitches from the scrap yarn onto needles.

Divide for sleeves

Step 3.

After stitches are moved onto the needles, you get at the beginning of the row at underarms. This is where you will notice a gap already. Try to identify which stitch or horizontal bar to pick up and knit them together to close the gap.


knit two together

Notice how stitches are placed on the needles. The left stitch is placed with the right leg in front of the needle. Right stitch with the right leg behind the needle.

Step 4.

When knitted through the back loop, the left stitch becomes twisted and goes UNDER the right stitch. That’s it! The gap is closed. Try to make a similar action on the other side of the underarm.


You shouldn’t have bigger gaps developing if you follow my tutorial on how to divide for sleeves and body. This should be enough to close gaps.

Thank you for reading this tutorial!

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