Picking up stitches may seem daunting, but is really quite simple. You are simply knitting into the sides of the stitches, instead of the top.
To pick up stitches start at one of the shoulder seams, this is usually worked from the left shoulder seam around the front of the neck and up to the right shoulder finishing off by knitting across stitches at the back of the garment. Usually you pick up the stitches using one needle, occasionally you may need to insert the other needle to actually work the stitch.
1. With the right side of the work facing you. Insert needle at the side of the stitch nearest to the top edge and join in yarn:
2. Knit into the side of the stitch:
3. Now insert the needle into the side of the next stitch down as shown and knit this stitch:
4. Continue working in this way until the required number of stitches have been picked up for the first side of the front neck:
5. Now knit across the stitches on the stitch holder at the front neck (it will be necessary to transfer these stitches back onto a needle from the stitch holder first – see how to do this here):
6. Now work up right hand side of neck, knitting into the sides of the stitches as before:
NOTE: To make it clearer, the photo above shows the front of the jumper only, the right shoulder seams have not been joined
7. Now knit across the stitches on the stitch holder at the back neck:
8. Count the stitches and work as directed in the pattern.