Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Sometimes when I’m designing a new piece, even if I love it, there’s still some uncertainty of how successful it will be … and sometimes I just know it will be an instant hit. The latter is definitely the case with my newest pattern, Le Bateau Sweater! This crewneck pullover is serving up quintessential French sailor vibes and is such a timeless addition to your wardrobe. Classic staples like this never go out of style, and they are such a joy to make over and over in different color combos. Scroll down for the free pattern, purchase the printable, ad-free PDF here, or grab the yarn kit from Lion Brand here.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

I generally steer clear from super tight fitting sweaters as I find lots of positive ease to be much more comfortable, but lately I’ve been keen to design one that has a relaxed fit without being too oversized. Enter Le Bateau. With 4-8″/10-20.5cm of ease it still has a slouchy feel to it, but it’s the perfect amount of roominess without feeling voluminous and overwhelming. This is the kind of piece I always want to take on a weekend trip where I know I’ll need a light layer to throw on and I only want to pack a small bag so I don’t have room for anything too bulky.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

I envisioned Le Bateau while visiting friends in the Hamptons last month. At the time I was working on my Summer League Cutoff with Lion Brand Comfy Cotton Blend and I enjoyed working with it so much I decided to use it for this design as well. The color Silver Lining is the most beautiful greyish blue that feels so nautical and reminds me of calming waters, and after a day in Montauk seeing all of the fishing boats and eating dockside mussels and clams I just couldn’t get the vision of this new piece out of my mind so I set to work on it as soon as I got back.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

This is actually the third summer in a row I’ve designed a knit sweater with Comfy Cotton Blend. If you’ve been here a while you might remember the Spring Breeze Sweater from 2019 and the Magic Hour Sweater from 2020. This yarn is super soft and so easy to work with, and the blend of cotton and polyester makes it light and airy and durable.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

While I love this classic grey/blue and white stripe using the Silver Lining and Whipped Cream colorways, I think this sweater would also look lovely striped with Whipped Cream and Mochaccino or any of the variegated colorways of this yarn. It is so fun to watch the stripes come to life!

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

The odds were in my favor as it came time to finish this sweater and take some photos of the finished piece. One of my boyfriend’s best friends has a 4,000 acre nature preserve around a lake in the Adirondacks that has been in his family for many generations, and we got the invite to come stay at his off-the-grid cabin for a few nights a couple weeks ago. We had been there last year as well so I knew the moody setting would be the perfect backdrop for these shots. I am so in love with how they turned out and I think they perfectly capture the essence of the pullover.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands
Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

One of the best parts about Le Bateau is how easy it is to make. This is a beginner level knitting pattern and the techniques involved are the knit and purl stitches, k2tog and ssk decreases, picking up and knitting from an edge, and seaming. So many things, including sweaters, can be made with something but rectangles and save for a few decreases to shape the sleeves and neckline, Le Bateau is essentially just rectangles. If you have never knit a sweater before, this is a great place to start!

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

MATERIALS

2 (2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 3, 3) skeins Lion Brand Comfy Cotton Blend in Whipped Cream (756-098) for color A
(DK/light worsted, weight 3; 392yds/358m per skein)
1 (1, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2) skein(s) Lion Brand Comfy Cotton Blend in Silver Lining (756-149) for color B
(DK/light worsted, weight 3; 392yds/358m per skein)
Size US 6 (4mm) knitting needles
Size US 8 (5mm) knitting needles
Size US 7 (4.5mm) circular knitting needles, 16”/40cm long
Stitch holders or scrap yarn
Removable stitch markers
Tapestry needle

FINISHED SIZE

Suggested ease: 4-8”/10-20.5cm
Pictured in a size S on model with 34”/86cm bust

Sizes XS (S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL)

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands
Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

GAUGE

18 sts + 24 rows = 4”/10cm in stockinette on size US 8 (5mm) needles

ABBREVIATIONS

*All Two of Wands patterns are written in standard US terms

CO – cast on
Dec – decrease
K – knit
K2tog – knit 2 together
P – purl
Rep – repeat
RS – right side
Sl – slip
SSK – slip, slip, knit
St(s) – stitch(es)
WS – wrong side
Wyif – with yarn in front

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Notes: Sweater body is worked flat from the bottom up and seamed. Sleeves are picked up and knit top down from the body. Neckband is picked up and knit after construction. All slipped stitches are slipped purlwise. Pattern is written for eight sizes: XS (S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL).

Back

Ribbing:

With US 6 (4mm) needles and color A, CO 81 (89, 97, 107, 115, 125, 133, 143) sts.

Row 1: Sl 1 wyif, *P 1, K 1, rep from * to end of row.

Row 2: Sl 1 wyif, *K 1, P 1, rep from * to last 2 sts, K 2.

Rep rows 1 and 2 until work measures 2.5”/6.5cm.

Body:

Change to color B and US 8 (5mm) needles. Row numbers will restart for simplicity.

Row 1 (RS): K.

Row 2 (WS): P.

Change to color A.

Rows 3-106 (110, 114, 118, 122, 126, 130, 134): Rep rows 1 and 2, changing color every 2 rows. There will be 53 (55, 57, 59, 61, 63, 65, 67) stripes. Work should measure approx. 20.25 (20.75, 21.5, 22.25, 22.75, 23.5, 24.25, 24.75)” / 51.5 (52.5, 54.5, 56.5, 58, 59.5, 61.5, 63) cm from CO edge.

Shape back neck:

Maintain 2 row striping while shaping back neck.

Next row (RS): K 26 (30, 33, 38, 41, 46, 49, 54), bind off 29 (29, 31, 31, 33, 33, 35, 35) sts, K to end of row.

Place sts worked BEFORE bind off on a holder and continue to work sts on needles for left shoulder. (26 (30, 33, 38, 41, 46, 49, 54) sts on needles)

Next row (WS): P.

Next row: K 1, SSK, K to end of row. (25 (29, 32, 37, 40, 45, 48, 53) sts)

Next row: P.

Bind off.

Place sts from holder back on needles to work right shoulder. Rejoin yarn at neckline edge.

Next row (WS): P.

Next row: K to last 3 sts, K2tog, K 1. (25 (29, 32, 37, 40, 45, 48, 53) sts)

Next row: P.

Bind off.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Front

Work as for back through body row 2.

Rows 3-92 (96, 100, 104, 108, 112, 116, 120): Rep rows 1 and 2, changing color every 2 rows. There will be 46 (48, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60) stripes. Work should measure approx. 17.75 (18.5, 19.25, 19.75, 20.5, 21.25, 21.75, 22.5)” / 45 (47, 49, 50, 52, 54, 55.5, 57) cm from CO edge.

Shape front neck:

Maintain 2 row striping while shaping front neck.

Next row (RS): K 31 (35, 38, 43, 46, 51, 54, 59), bind off 19 (19, 21, 21, 23, 23, 25, 25) sts, K to end of row.

Place sts worked BEFORE bind off on a holder and continue to work sts on needles for right shoulder. (31 (35, 38, 43, 46, 51, 54, 59) sts on needles)

Next row (WS): P.

Next row: K 1, SSK, K to end of row. (30 (34, 37, 42, 45, 50, 53, 58) sts)

Rep last 2 rows 5 more times. (25 (29, 32, 37, 40, 45, 48, 53) sts)

Next row: P.

Next row: K.

Next row: P.

Rep last 2 rows 1 more time.

Bind off.

Place sts from holder back on needles to work left shoulder. Rejoin yarn at neckline edge.

Next row (WS): P.

Next row: K to last 3 sts, K2tog, K 1. (30 (34, 37, 42, 45, 50, 53, 58) sts)

Rep last 2 rows 5 more times. (25 (29, 32, 37, 40, 45, 48, 53) sts)

Next row: P.

Next row: K.

Next row: P.

Rep last 2 rows 1 more time.

Bind off.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Sleeves

Seam shoulders. Place markers 7.5 (8.25, 8.75, 9, 9.75, 10.25, 10.75, 11.25)” / 19 (21, 22, 23, 24.5, 26, 27.25, 28.5) cm down from the shoulder seam along both sides of the front and back, ensuring that the markers are all on the same stripes so that side seams will align correctly.

With US 8 (5mm) needles and color A and with RS facing, pick up and K 68 (74, 78, 82, 88, 92, 96, 102) sts between the markers on one side (approx. 3 sts for every 4 rows).

Next row (WS): P.

Change to color B.

Next row (RS): K.

Next row: P.

Rep last 2 rows, changing color every 2 rows, until work measures 2”/5cm from pick up row, ending with a WS row. Maintain 2 row striping for remainder of sleeve until cuffs.

Next row (RS): (Dec row) K 1, K2tog, K to last 3 sts, SSK, K 1. (66 (72, 76, 80, 86, 90, 94, 100) sts)

Next 5 (5, 5, 5, 3, 3, 3, 3) rows: Continue in stockinette, knitting the RS rows and purling the WS rows.

Rep last 6 (6, 6, 6, 4, 4, 4, 4) rows 10 (6, 2, 0, 17, 16, 14, 12) more times. (46 (60, 72, 80, 52, 58, 66, 76) sts)

Next row: (Dec row): K 1, K2tog, K to last 3 sts, SSK, K 1. (44 (58, 70, 78, 50, 56, 64, 74) sts)

Next 3 (3, 3, 3, 1, 1, 1, 1) row(s): Continue in stockinette, knitting the RS rows and purling the WS rows.

Rep last 4 (4, 4, 4, 2, 2, 2, 2) rows 3 (9, 15, 18, 4, 6, 10, 14) more times. (38 (40, 40, 42, 42, 44, 44, 46) sts)

Continue in stockinette, knitting the RS rows and purling the WS rows, until sleeve measures approx. 17”/43cm from pick up row, ending with a WS row in color B.

Cuffs:

Change to color A and US 6 (4mm) needles.

Next row: K.

Next row: *K 1, P 1, rep from * to end of row.

Rep last row until ribbed cuff measures 2”/5cm.

Bind off with a tubular bind off or in rib.

Rep for second sleeve.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Construction

Starting above the ribbing to leave a side slit, seam the sides up to the underarm and down the underside of the sleeve with mattress stitch.

To avoid a jog in the stripes at the side seam, work the mattress stitch so that you lead with the right side but are one bar ahead on the left side. To begin, insert the tapestry needle under two bars on the right side – the first two of color B, then insert the tapestry needle under 3 bars on the left side – the first two of color B and the following first of color A. Proceed with two bars at a time on both sides – now the two bars of color A on the right, and then the remaining bar of color A and the first bar of the following color B on the left, and so on.

Secure and weave in all ends.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

Neckband

With US 7 (4.5mm) needles, color A, RS facing, and starting at the right shoulder seam, pick up and K 4 sts down back right neck, 29 (29, 31, 31, 33, 33, 35, 35) sts across back neck bind off, 4 sts up back left neck, 15 sts down front left neck, 19 (19, 21, 21, 23, 23, 25, 25) sts across front neck bind off, and 15 sts up front right neck for a total of 86 (86, 90, 90, 94, 94, 98, 98) sts. Join in the round and place marker for beginning of round.

Round 1: *K 1, P 1, rep from * around.

Rep round 1 until neckband measures 1”/2.5cm.

Bind off with a tubular bind off or in rib.

Secure and weave in all ends.

Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

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Le Bateau Sweater Pattern by Two of Wands

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