2023 Sweater Design-A-Long with Ann Budd and Jeane deCoster

Retreat Logo, 4 pieces of a sweater laid out flat. Clockwise, back of sweater, right sleeve, front of sweater, left sleeve

After teaching multi-session sweater design classes via zoom, I’ve decided it’s time to team up with expert designer Jeane deCoster to tackle the most complicated, yet most tailored, silhouette—the set-in sleeve. Limited to just 24 students, this class will involve both zoom meetings and a 3-day in-person retreat. Geared for the serious knitter, we’ll teach you how to design your own sweater (either a pullover or cardigan) from scratch based on your size, your yarn, and your gauge.

During the zoom sessions, you’ll learn the basics including the importance of gauge swatches, construction details, and finishing techniques. During the 3-day retreat, you’ll get hands-on help on everything from sketching your design ideas to translating them into actual knitting instructions.

Ann and Jeane will create their own sweaters at the same time to give you insight into how two veteran knitters approach sweater design. The lessons you learn will allow you to create future sweater patterns of your own and free you from the restriction of someone else’s pattern!

Registration is closed. If you would like to be contacted if spots open, please sign up for our waitlist.

Class Schedule

Saturday, October 7 (Zoom 9:00 – 11:00 am Mountain Time)
The sweater design class starts with a 2-hour zoom meeting in which Ann and Jeane will discuss the tailored fit of set-in sleeve sweater construction, centering a stitch or color pattern, and knitting (and measuring!) a reliable gauge swatch. The recording of this live class will be available for 14 days, during which you’ll have plenty of time to swatch potential stitch and color patterns.

Front of Hotel Boulderado Hotel. Five story brick building with drop off area.

Thursday, October 26 to Sunday, October 29 (in Person)
We’ll gather in person at the luxurious historic Hotel Boulderado in downtown Boulder, Colorado, for hands-on instructions on how to use your swatch(es) as a basis for your unique pattern. We’ll begin by sketching design ideas, then turn those ideas into knitting instructions. You’ll learn to calculate armhole, neck, and sleeve cap shaping based on your gauge and your desired finished size. During this time, you’ll start the back of your sweater; you’ll leave with detailed instructions for completing your design.

During “off” time, you’ll be free to enjoy the celebrated boutique shops, highly varied and unique restaurants, and always entertaining street performers of Boulder’s historic pedestrian Pearl Street Mall, located just one block from the hotel.

Saturdays, November 4, 11, and 18 (Zoom 9:00 – 10:30 am Mountain Time)
Following the in-person retreat, we will have three weekly zoom sessions during which Ann and Jeane will keep you on track and answer any questions. In addition, these zooms will give you an opportunity to share your progress and inspiration with the entire group. Recordings of each of these live classes will be available for 7 days.

Saturday, December 2 (Zoom 9:00 – 11:00 am Mountain Time)
This final 2-hour zoom session will cover seaming the pieces together and adding neckbands and button bands to finish your sweaters. The recording of this live class will be available for 7 days.

In all you get:

  • 5 zoom sessions (1.5 to 2 hours each)
  • 15 hours of in-person classes in Boulder, Colorado
  • 3 nights lodging at Hotel Boulderado (Thursday, October 26 through Saturday, October 28)
  • 1 dinner (Thursday, October 26)
  • 3 breakfasts (Friday, October 27 through Sunday, October 29)
  • Help from Ann and Jeane throughout the class
  • The knowledge and experience to design custom sweaters for friends, family, and yourself!


Headshot of Ann Budd. Women with shorter white blonde hair. Wearing glasses and a turtle neck.

Ann Budd has been knitting for more than fifty years. She was on the editorial staff of Interweave Knits for twenty years and edited dozens of knitting books for Interweave Press. She is author and co-author of sixteen books, including the popular Knitter’s Handy Book series that provide knitting instructions for multiple sizes and multiple gauges. In the past few years, Ann has taught virtual sweater design classes through the Zoom platform. Ann is excited to include an in-person segment in this new class that will lead to greater understanding of custom fit in knitwear.

headshot of Jeane deCoster. Woman with short light blond hair, wearing a light blue shirt and necklace

Jeane deCoster studied fashion design in college and has long been fascinated with how to make and fit garments—and how you look while wearing those garments. While her program covered a lot of custom pattern making for cut-and-sew designs, there was no information about handknits. The idea that the pattern and the knitted cloth are produced at the same time revolutionized the way Jeane thought about handknitting and the close relationship between fit and looking/feeling good. It was the start of a long journey to understand all the elements of fit—proportion, color, personal style, joy, etc. Jeane is excited to share some of these fundamentals of fit while designing a sweater together.


Sign up by April 30, 2023 and save:
Double Occupancy (2 queen beds): $1485
A security deposit of $495 is due upon registration; another $495 is due May 15; the final $495 is due August 1.
If you have a roommate in mind, please specify the name on the registration form. Should you need a roommate, you’ll be matched up with someone after registration.
Single Occupancy (1 king or 1 queen bed): $1890
A security deposit of $630 is due upon registration; another $630 is due May 15; the final $630 is due August 1.

Sign up after April 30, 2023, and the price increases to $1545 (three installments of $515 each) for double occupancy and $1950 (three installments of $650 each) for single occupancy.

Cancellation Policy

A $50 fee will be charged for cancellations until April 1, 2023. A $150 fee will be charged for cancellations between April 1 and September 1. No refund will be given after September 1, 2023.


Contact Ann at annbudd@annbuddknits.com if you have any questions or concerns.