Names of Sweater parts?

This is already sounding a bit odd. I would like to be able to search sweater patterns but have no idea of what the different style parts are called. I figured out what a peplum is. What do you call a sweater with loose-fitting fronts that hang down lower than at the side seams? I know what a shawl collar is, but what is a broad band around the fronts and neck called? Is there a name for when the fronts don’t curve around the neck but are squared and then hang down like a collar? Does anyone have a link to a resource for this kind of information?

You could try a Google search. This is the first one that came up for me - scroll down a little to the box with the blue names of different types of sweaters. Names are quite often regional too so you may have to keep that in mind. I haven’t knit a sweater since my boyfriend in college (it didn’t fit - my first attempt at a sweater and very little knitting experience - he was tall and slim - the sweater would have been better for short and squat Danny DeVito - we celebrated our 45th this year!)

Knitted garment parts follow the same stylistic descriptions as sewn garments. Names for these things are not consistent. To answer your particular questions 1) often called a “swing” jacket or a “waterfall” jacket/cardigan; 2) bands are called bands–front bands, collar bands–but collar bands are called different names depending on how wide they are and if they are on a pullover or cardigan; 3) square neck The collar pieces are separate pieces. A squared off neckline with pointed collar only on the sides is often called a “sailor collar” after the 19th century UK navy uniforms.

In my experience you will have a difficult time searching sweater patterns by detail features like these. There is no database that I know of that has that function. You might try searching Pinterest for the features you are looking for. Realize that every sweater has a back piece(s), front piece(s), and sleeves. Everything else is optional, including collars, cuffs, bands, pockets, etc. If you can post a photo of something close to what you are looking for, the members may have suggestions.s

No offense, but as a master tailor and knitter, your question strikes me as somewhat odd, it makes me wonder if you don’t have a purpose that is more to the point? If you have no knowledge of garment parts, it’s hard to understand what you are actually asking…


You might want to try a web search on garment vocabulary. There are a wide range of resources available, from basic styles for English Language Learners, to detailed vocabulary for fashion design and clothing construction (some examples are Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) and Vogue).

Searches can also be made more specific, such as: [INDENT]- garment vocabulary necklines,

  • garment vocabulary silhouettes, etc. [/INDENT]

Some results from these searches, which may be helpful: [INDENT]- “Fashion Terms and Styles for Women’s Garments”, EC1382, a free downloadable 50-page PDF file, courtesy of Oregon State University Extension Service, September 1991 (

That is a really good question, although I can’t think of a database or anything that would have a list. Maybe knitting books from the local library – even they will have different terms, but at least they will be free to have a look. There is also a huge variation according to the language you use and the part of the world you are in, e.g. an American turtleneck sweater is a British polo-neck jumper and that sort of thing, so if you do find a source of information, check which country it is in or you may get a surprise when you knit!

Thank you for the responses. I haven’t a definite garment in mind. I just noticed that different sweaters had different names of parts- like shawl collar. Bell sleeves is another. I know what that is. But the others…like the ‘swing sweater’ I had no idea. I will try pinterest since that’s a great way to find examples. I actually want to make my own pattern. I have been reading and watching but not all sweaters are labels as to what you call the parts. So I thought I’d ask and see what we came up with here. Many thanks to all!