Archive for January, 2011
It’s no secret that Tunisian crochet is a hot topic these days. One could easily make the argument that this resurgence is due in large part to Sharon Hernes Silverman’s 2009 book, Tunisian Crochet: The Look of Knitting with the Ease of Crocheting, which has become a gold-standard reference book for many crocheters. Fortunately, Sharon has just released her latest book, Crochet Pillows With Tunisian & Traditional Techniques, which is equally as inspiring as her past titles.
Crochet Pillows With Tunisian & Traditional Techniques was a joy to read and filled with more of Sharon’s helpful tips and tricks. The pillows run the gamut from fun and funky to classic and elegant. There is something for everyone’s taste and aesthetic in this book. Best of all, it is written in a manner such that beginning crocheters can comfortably stretch their basic skills to the next level using Sharon’s comprehensive stitch guide that is both clear and concise. I am sure that the final portion of the book, filled with information about traditional and Tunisian crochet techniques as well as a list of indispensible resources, will serve as the perfect reference for both novice and seasoned crocheters alike.
Sharon’s love for crochet and understanding of the art form is clear while reading this title, especially in the ease with which she explains both basic and Tunisian crochet methods. “From the time I was age 3 or 4, I loved crafts. I remember making mosaic trays, paper lanterns, even a wooden book-holder in kindergarten! I learned to crochet and cross-stitch from my mother when I was 6 or 7. She taught me to knit, too, but that didn’t seem to stick,” explained Sharon.
“When I was writing my second crochet book, Beyond Basic Crocheting, one of my stitch dictionaries had some Tunisian crochet stitch patterns. I had never heard of it before, and it blew me away! [It was] so much fun to do, so fast, and [created] such interesting results,” she continued. “I included an easy Tunisian crochet scarf in that book, and was inspired to learn more about the technique and the possibilities for using it.” Since then, Sharon has continued to expand her Tunisian crochet skills and begun to share her fascination with Tunisian crochet stitches through her books, patterns, and classes.
From the very beginning, the concept of a book of pillow designs intrigued me. In fact, for crocheters who mostly make garments, it can be a breath of fresh air to try a home décor project. Likewise, pillows are relatively quick to make and are easily portable. When asked to comment on the rationale behind the book, Sharon pointed out, “Look through any design magazine or catalog and you’ll see pillows galore. They are a great way to spruce up your décor quickly and without breaking the bank. Instead of buying mass-produced pillows, why not make your own and get exactly what you want? Pillows make great gifts also, since they don’t have to be sized to fit someone like a garment does—not a whole lot of risk! They are small enough to complete in a reasonable amount of time, yet fun and interesting to make. Another advantage is that because they have two sides, you can create two looks in one project.”
Crochet Pillows With Tunisian & Traditional Techniques includes 20 projects in total – 10 in traditional crochet and 10 in Tunisian crochet. While reading the book, eight designs instantly struck a chord within me. For fun, I decided to list each of my favorite patterns according to a particular category and Sharon was gracious enough to comment on the inspiration behind each one.
The thought of working all of those loops along with the nubbly feeling of the finished product was enough for me to rate this as the design that incorporated the most fun stitch. “I saw this stitch pattern in a dictionary and loved the look! The subtle shadings in the variegated yarn fit well with the pattern too,” Sharon added.
Most Elegant – Cable Columns
I instantly fall in love with any crochet design that includes beautiful cables. It is as if there is a little voice inside saying – “See, we can make cables, too.” Also, the reverse single stitch has become one of my favorite finishing techniques as it results in such a smooth silhouette. However, Sharon’s inspiration for this design was the fiber itself. She explained, “Sometimes yarn is the inspiration for the project, as in this case. The stitch definition of the Lana is excellent—perfect for cables. I hope that people will give crocheted cables a try when they see how nice they look on this pillow. Reverse single crochet seemed like the right kind of tailored edging for this project as well.”
Most Adorable – Spiral Flower
As the mom of two “girly girls,” this pattern grabbed my attention right away. It would be fun to decorate my youngest daughter’s room with several of these pillows in her favorite colors, lavender and pink. “I was fooling around with little shell shapes and arranged them into a circle. They looked so cute that a whimsical accent pillow came to mind. I think this would look adorable hanging from a doorknob,” Sharon chimed in.
“This is another pattern that I found in a stitch dictionary. Usually I shy away from anything leggier than a treble crochet, but I was really intrigued by the three-dimensional aspect of this pattern even though the stitches are quite tall,” Sharon explained. Personally, this stitch is breathtaking. When I first saw it, I experienced one of those wonderful moments in which you are mesmerized by a crochet pattern.
Must Have NOW Design – Red Hot Heart
It is clear why this felted pillow made the cover – it is simply fantastic. “In one of my home design magazines I saw an embellished pillow that got me thinking. I liked the idea of using the same color embellishment in a different texture. I first tried the spiral rope in a traditional heart shape, but the asymmetrical version gives the pillow a big jolt in personality,” remarked Sharon.
For those who are anxious to give felting a try but who still feel a bit apprehensive about the technique, Sharon shared some great advice. “I can understand why felting seems intimidating – you invest a lot of time making something and then aren’t sure how it will look when it comes out of the washing machine. My best advice is to felt your swatch. You may find that it shrinks more in one dimension than in the other, which is important to know,” she cautioned. “You’ll also learn that you can felt something multiple times if it doesn’t get small enough the first time. Fortunately, pillows are very forgiving. You should wait until your project is done before you purchase an insert, so if the felted project comes out a slightly different size than what you expected, it’s not a problem.”
Most Sophisticated – Debonair
“Tunisian net stitch, or full stitch, is very classy. And, of course as far as colors go, it doesn’t get any more sophisticated than black and white! This pillow design reminds me of a tuxedo, with the buttons adding an element of individualism,” she added. I couldn’t agree more and have already starting shopping for the perfect set of buttons.
This pillow would make the perfect baby shower gift. In fact, as Sharon reminded me, the pattern serves as a complement to one of her previous designs. “This pillow goes with the Sweet Dreams Baby Blanket I designed for my previous book, Tunisian Crochet: The Look of Knitting with the Ease of Crocheting. It’s a small project with a lot of impact. I agree that this would make a great gift!”
Perfect Holiday Project – Lovejoy
With St. Valentine’s Day right around the corner, this pillow would make any loved one feel extra special. However, I was fascinated by this design because it serves as a reference to crochet’s historical repertoire. Traditionally, Tunisian crochet was often used as a backdrop for cross-stitch embroidery. In fact, I have many such designs in my antique pattern collection. “Tunisian simple stitch has highly structured horizontal and vertical components, which make it an ideal backdrop for cross-stitch. As you mention, antique patterns often took advantage of this, especially in beautifully embellished afghans,” Sharon added.
Crochet Pillows With Tunisian & Traditional Techniques closes with a befitting discussion on stuffing and closing pillows. Many crocheters turn to fiberfill when packing pillows, however Sharon argues against the use of loose fiberfill in the book and explained to me the other options available for filling pillows. “Maybe it’s the way I stuff my pillows, but when I use fiberfill it always seems to clump up and get lumpy. I would certainly encourage crafters to try whatever pillow filling suits them. I used hypoallergenic synthetic inserts, but something like down could add an element of luxury. You can also have foam pieces cut to size at a craft store. If you are using a prefabricated pillow form, remember that it should be slightly bigger than the outer shell, so that when you stuff your pillow it is nice and full with no floppy areas in the corners or along the sides.”
Crochet Pillows With Tunisian & Traditional Techniques can be purchased online at Amazon or WEBS. To learn more about Sharon as well as her designs and classes, visit www.sharonsilverman.com, or join her on Facebook at Sharon Silverman Contemporary Crochet.
My oldest daughter came home from school today tinkled pink to report that she learned how to knit at school this morning. My pride level instantly rose to the supreme level and I know that I started to grin from ear to ear. Yes, my baby, the knitter!
What makes this announcement so much more poignant is the fact that she asked me to teach her to crochet last year but quickly became frustrated. She is left-handed and couldn’t get the knack of doing everything the opposite of me. Another teacher on Ravelry told me the trick of using a mirror, but when I brought up the subject the next day, she had lost her desire and her nerve.
Well, it’s back! I am so thrilled that my baby loves yarn too! I was beginning to worry that the “crafty gene” had skipped a generation. Well, my worries are no more. My daughter is making a blue (her favorite color ) scarf for her baby cousin. I can’t wait to proudly display the finished product here!
I am also happy to report that my Wal-Mart has decided to return the craft section to the store. A few months ago, I went to Wal-Mart for black thread only to find that the entire craft section had been cleared out. When I questioned the manager, he explained that the corporate office had done a market analysis and decided to remove the craft department. Well, of course, I contacted that very corporate office to complain and apparently, so did a lot of others. I don’t buy yarn from Wal-Mart anymore; however, I do have fond memories of saving up my money to buy cheap skeins of yarn as a child from stores just like Wal-Mart. It bothered me that young boys and girls would no longer have that option. Now, they do! The department was well stocked with Red Heart, Lion Brand, and Sugar ‘n Crème. There was enough yarn there to keep many knitters and crocheters, both young and seasoned, busy for a long while.
It looks like Monday is turning out to be a great day after all. Happy Stitching!
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I dedicated you, a prophet to the nations I appointed you. Jeremiah 1:5
Yesterday the snow and ice did not prevent the mailman from delivering a special treat from Slipped Stitch Studios. A few weeks ago, I contacted Laura Lundy, owner of Slipped Stitch Studios, and explained to this incredible crafty gal that I needed a case for my hand-carved Tunisian crochet hooks. Little did I know that I would become the guinea pig for her latest design.
“I chose your custom order to do this because, as we discussed, you above all wanted to protect your hooks. I currently only have rolls in my shop, and while they are a great organization tool, I am not 100% happy with them because one pocket is visible no matter how you roll it,” explained Laura.
“This new design folds in and will not only organize, but keep your mind at ease because your precious tools will not fall out from this case.”
If you have not visited Slipped Stitch Studios’ Etsy store, you are missing a real treat. It features handy tools for knitters, crocheters, and spinners such as project bags, organizers, pattern solutions, and special gifts. My favorite aspect of Laura’s products is her choice of coordinated fiber-inspired fabric designs – from “Great Balls of Yarn” (which I selected) to “Sock Monkey” to “Do EWE Knit.” Each one puts a smile on my face – and life is too short not to be surrounded by such joy.
Recently Laura unveiled the “miPattern Saver.” This light weight pattern wallet both protects your pattern and keeps your place at the same time. It even stands up, so you don’t have to crook your neck while stitching. It’s pure genius!
I guess I am not the only one who thinks so because Laura is on the cusp of a huge expansion. “I just got back from my first TNNA, and by early spring, I will be in over 33 local yarn shops across the country! I am so excited. I am very serious about the indie movement. Knitting was my gateway drug. It opened my eyes to see what people are doing out there – creating and trying to make a place for themselves, by themselves, not under some corporate lock and key.”
“I do everything I can through other indie artists. If I can use a cottage industry rather than a big business, I will! I think the network of people doing this, like Etsy, is the biggest stepping stone to a whole new way of making a happier living,” continued Laura.
And, a happy living is what Laura seems to be making, indeed. When asked to explain the “story behind the story,” she mentions that she started her business to stay at home with her daughter. “She was born in 2008 and I was laid off during my maternity leave. [So, I decided to make] lemons into lemonade. Now I am pregnant with my son, who is due in April, and I am the most fulfilled I have ever been. It is crazy juggling a family and a business, but if it makes any sense at all – this actually keeps me sane.”
The Yarn Fairy paid me a visit again today! This time she dropped off some fun 70% mohair/30% acrylic yarn (Etoile by Bollicine) in an amazing “cotton candy” pink color! I am dreaming of patterns now…..what to do with 164 yards of such delight?!?
Sometimes it is important to think of a pattern as a road map – you know where you want to go in the end, but you come to realize that you have to deviate from the charted course in order to get there. This has been the case for me with the Country Car Coat.
This evening I finished my version of the Left Front piece. I must admit that I am pleased with the product thus far. The Left Front lines up well with the Center Back (see the two pieces pinned together in the pictures below) and I do hope this is going to be a beautiful sweater when I am all done. Keep your fingers crossed!
As promised, I am including my notes because I had to make several adjustments and liberal interpretations to the pattern for the raglan armhole shaping. I hope it’s helpful. Happy Stitching!
Left Front – Shape Raglan Armhole
Row 18 (Note: This is Row 26 in actuality for me!): Ch 3, make V-sts in ch-1 sp of next 5 V-sts, dc in next V-st; ch 3, turn; leave remaining sts unworked. [5 V-sts]
Row 19: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [5 V-sts]
Row 20: Work V-st pattern in ch-1 sp of next 4 V-sts, work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [4 V-sts]
Row 21: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [4 V-sts]
Row 22: Work V-st pattern in ch-1 sp of next 3 V-sts, work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [3 V-sts]
Row 23: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [3 V-sts]
Row 24: Work V-st pattern in ch-1 sp of next 2 V-sts, work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [2 V-sts]
Row 25: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [2 V-sts]
Row 26: Work V-st pattern in ch-1 sp of 1 V-st, work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [1 V-st]
Row 27: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [1 V-st]
Row 28: Dc in ch-1 sp of V-st, dc in final dc; ch 3, turn. [3 dc]
Row 29: Dc in each dc across; fasten off. [3 dc]
There is nothing more wonderful than the feeling of being wrapped in crochet. I see the look on my kiddos’ faces when they wrap themselves in one of the afghans I have made for them through the years….the soft cuddly yarn seems to soothe the weariest of hearts. In fact, all three of my kiddos were sick this week, and my hubby too…..but, it was nice to see them get some comfort from their favorite “blankies,” each of which were truly stitched with love.
Well tonight, I thought I would share my favorite crocheted comfort piece. It is a shawl made of lace weight cotton or maybe, size 10. I did not make it – but, it was made for me by a local artisan in Manila who I met while living there. I wore it tonight to our parish’s volunteer appreciation banquet and I felt all warm and snuggly the entire night. It was a nice treat after a long week of meeting deadlines, caring for sick children and my husband, doing laundry, and everything else we moms have to juggle on a day-to-day basis.
It is a joy to be wrapped in crochet. So, what is your favorite hand-made comfort piece?
Photos courtesy of Hello Craft Lovers
Have you seen anything like this?!? Inger Carina, a Swedish artist who studied at the Konstfack (otherwise known as, the University College of Arts, Crafts and Design) in Stockholm, has created some incredibly beautiful crocheted weaponry. In fact, Carina has designed two crochet guns, gun holsters, and a belt with a classic-styled buckle to match. I must admit that I am amazed at the delicate beauty and remarkable detail of her 3-dimensional designs, although the subject matter was a wee bit shocking at first. Apparently she achieved these using filet crochet techniques and sugar water.
Three cheers for Inger, who made me think outside the “crochet box” today! FYI, she doesn’t much care for guns either.
I finished the back piece of the Country Car Coat pattern and, as others on Ravelry have pointed out, this pattern needs a fair bit of tender loving care. All in all, though, I am very pleased with the final results of the back piece in the yarn that I have chosen and with the sizing adjustments that I have made. The drape is turning out lovely and the color is so beautiful. I pinned the piece to Bessie, my dress form, to give you a look at how it is shaping up.
Also, I decided to share my interpretation of the garble printed on page 3 of pattern for the shaping of the raglan armholes in an attempt to help others who may be interested in making this gorgeous garment, especially those in the Crochet Divas group on Ravelry participating in the CAL. It is important to note that the schematic illustrated in the pattern does not appear to be 100% accurate with regards to the shaping described in the instructions. In fact, the shaping for the raglan armhole is slopped but begins with more of a pronounced indent (see photo of my example below).
I want to point out too that the directions below have been customized slightly. They are specific for my size (XL) and the bulky yarn that I have selected rather than the super bulky yarn for which the pattern originally calls. I found that following the directions for a size 2X using my yarn of choice results in a size XL, more or less. The finished dimensions of my fabric for the center back piece are 26.5 inches across the bottom, 18 inches from the bottom to the raglan armhole shaping, 9.5 inches in length for the raglan armhole shaping, and 3.75 inches across the top.
Shape Raglan Armhole
Row 1 [New Row (Dec Row)]: Sk first dc, 2 V-sts, and first dc of next V-st; join yarn in ch-1 space of 3rd V-st; ch 3, work V-st pattern in next 12 V-sts; dc in ch-1 space of next V-st, ch 3, turn. Leave remaining 2 V-sts and final dc unworked. [12 V-sts]
Row 2: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, ch 3, turn. [12 V-sts]
Row 3: Work V-st dec in first 2 V-sts, completing V-st pattern in second V-st from hook; work V-st pattern in next 9 V-sts; work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [10 V-sts]
Row 4: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, ch 3, turn. [10 V-sts]
Row 5: Work V-st dec in first 2 V-sts, completing V-st pattern in second V-st from hook; work V-st pattern in next 7 V-sts; work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [8 V-sts]
Row 6: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, ch 3, turn. [8 V-sts]
Row 7: Work V-st dec in first 2 V-sts, completing V-st pattern in second V-st from hook; work V-st pattern in next 5 V-sts; work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [6 V-sts]
Row 8: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, ch 3, turn. [6 V-sts]
Row 9: Work V-st dec in first 2 V-sts, completing V-st pattern in second V-st from hook; work V-st pattern in next 3 V-sts; work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [4 V-sts]
Row 10: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, ch 3, turn. [4 V-sts]
Row 11: Work V-st dec in first 2 V-sts, completing V-st pattern in second V-st from hook; work V-st pattern in next V-st; work V-st dec in final V-st and in top of ch-3 turning chain; ch 3, turn. [2 V-sts]
Row 12: Work V-st pattern in each V-st across, dc in final dc, fasten off. [2 V-sts]
Well, I am moving on to the left front piece now. If I make any more substantive clarifications to the pattern, I will be sure to include my notes for all to share.
Have you ever fallen in love a pattern for the perfect dress or sweater? Visions dance through your head of the finished garment made from some gorgeous yarn that has been languishing in your stash for years. Then suddenly, you realize that the pattern is not written for your size or that ”the perfect” yarn you had in mind is actually a different weight from which the pattern calls. Well, rest assured – hope is not lost. All that is required are few handy, basic math tricks to customize the pattern to meet your needs and you’ll be sporting the garment in no time. Well, that is, in the time it takes for you to finish the stitching.
1) The pattern, including a detailed schematic;
2) Gauge information from the pattern;
3) A calculator and/or scratch paper;
4) A ruler;
5) A measuring tape;
6) A pencil and an eraser;
7) Basic elementary school math skills;
8) And lastly, your imagination.
Once you have gotten all of these tools together, you will be ready to get started. Be sure, though, to leave behind your fear of erasing and frogging. Customizing a pattern sometimes takes a bit of trial and error.
Instructions for Customizing a Pattern for Use with a Different Yarn Weight:
1) First of all, complete a gauge swatch in the yarn of your choice.
2) Determine how many stitches or stitch patterns per a given length, such as an inch, are in your swatch. Then, compare this information to the gauge information included in the pattern to calculate how much you will need to increase or decrease the number of stitches worked per row or round of the pattern to achieve the same dimensions.
For example, a pattern calls for 3 shell stitches in a width of 3 inches. However, with your yarn of choice, you find that you have 6 shell stitches in a width of 3 inches. In other words, the ratio of shell stitches between the two swatches is 3:6 or 1:2. Thus, you will need to double the stitch count to achieve the same dimensions in the schematic. If the first row calls for 15 shell stitches across, you will need to complete 30 shell stitches in order to create the same length or width of crocheted fabric.
3) Use the measurements in the schematic to double-check the dimensions for each of the pattern pieces. In our example, 30 shell stitches in the weight of our choice will give us 15” across.
4) Once you have determined the stitch ratio between the two gauge swatches, you will need to determine the “multiple of” information in order to determine the proper number of starting chains. Usually, this information is included in the pattern. In our example, let’s assume that the shell stitch pattern calls for a multiple of 3 + 6. Thus, your starting chain will need to be (3 X 30) + 6, or 96. If the multiple information is not included, divide the stitch pattern count by the number of starting chains. Let’s assume, in our example, the pattern calls for 51 ch and Row 1 has 15 shell stitches. 51/15 = 3 with a remainder of 6, or a multiple of 3 + 6.
5) All of the stitch counts throughout the entire pattern will need to be adjusted according the ratio of stitches between the two gauge swatches. In our example, we would need to double all of the stitch counts in order to achieve the same size.
6) In addition, the number of rows or rounds completed may also need to be adjusted depending on the height of the stitches in the gauge swatch. Let’s assume, for the sake of our example, that 1 row of shell stitches equals 1” in the pattern. However, when we create our gauge swatch in the yarn of our choice, we find that 2 rows of shell stitches equal 1”. In other words, the ratio of the stitch heights is 1:2. This means that the number of rows or rounds created will also need to be doubled to achieve the same finished dimensions. If the pattern says continue until Row 20, you will need to continue until Row 40 with our chosen yarn.
As a rule of thumb, switching to a lighter weight yarn will require more stitches per row or round, and may also require more rows or rounds to be completed in order to achieve the final dimensions in the pattern schematic. Likewise, switching to a heavier weight yarn will require fewer stitches per row or round, and may also require fewer rows or rounds to be completed in order to achieve the final dimensions in the pattern schematic.
Instructions for Customizing the Size of a Pattern:
1) Use the measuring tape to determine your dimensions. This information will determine how much larger or smaller you will need to adjust the measurements of each piece in the pattern.
2) Complete a gauge swatch according to the pattern instructions and determine how many stitches or stitch patterns per inch are in your swatch. This will help you determine by how many stitches or stitch patterns you will need to increase or decrease per each completed row or round in order to customize the final size.
For example, let’s assume once again that our pattern calls for 3 shell stitches in a width of 3”, or 1 shell stitch per 1”. You want to add 3” to the width of the body and 1” to the width of the sleeves. So, add 3 shell stitches to increase the size of the body and 1 shell stitch to increase the size of the sleeve.
3) Use the “multiple of” information to adjust the proper number of starting chains. (See above instructions on how to find or calculate this information.)
4) Depending on the layout of the garment, however, you many need to adjust the pattern based on the stitch height. In these cases, the sizing is determined by how many rows or rounds are completed. Remember in our previous example, 1 row of shell stitches equals 1” in the pattern. If you want to add 3” to the width of the body and 1” to the width of the sleeves in this scenario, you would add 3 additional rows to the body and 1 additional row to the sleeves.
5) Another rule of thumb is to use the proportion information for each piece of the garment included in the pattern to customize the shaping of the pattern to fit your needs. To do this, take a look at the schematic and row or round counts. Determine the changes in the portions of each piece by size. For example, let’s assume the center piece of the back is 27” in width for a size small, 31” in width for a size medium, and 35” in width for a size large. You want to make the center piece of the back 39” in width. You notice that the widths of the sleeves in the pattern are 12”, 14”, and 16” for a small, medium, and large, respectively. In other words, the portion of the sleeve width to that of the center piece of the back is 2x + 3 [2x12 + 3 = 27; 2x14 + 3 = 31; 2x16 + 3 = 35]. So, if you want the center back piece to measure 39” in width, your sleeve should measure 18” [2x18 + 3 = 39] to maintain the same shaping.
6) For a quick pattern customization, look for the changes in the stitch counts by the sizes that are written in the pattern. In fact, using the sizing information already included in the pattern can help you determine how to go up or down in a size quickly.
Using our previous example, the widths of the center piece of the back are 27”, 31” and 35” for a small, medium, and large, respectively. It is clear to see that the width is increasing by 4” for each size. So, if I want to make a size XS, I would subtract 4” from the center piece of the back for the size small (27” – 4” = 23”). Recall, in our example that 1 shell stitch = 1”. So my stitch count for a XS should be 23 shell stitches. I would then adjust the number of my starting chains according the “multiple of” information. Using a multiple of 3 +6, my starting chain would decrease to 75 [23x3 + 6 = 75].
7) If you want to make a standard size rather than a custom fit based on particular measurements and you would rather not, or cannot, size up or down using the rule of thumb for quick customization, the CYCA standard sizing chart (http://www.craftyarncouncil.com/sizing.html) can be used to adjust the pattern according to the finished dimensions. The website gives standard dimensions for babies, children, women, and men as well as head and foot sizing information. Once you have determined the dimensions for the desired size, calculate the stitch count necessary to achieve the size and the number of starting chains using the tips explained above.
Sometimes, you may find that you want to customize a pattern for a particular size AND use a different yarn weight. In that case, determine the adjusted stitch count first based on the new yarn weight. Use the instructions to adjust the pattern by stitch width and/or by stitch height depending on the garment construction. Then, make changes to the final stitch counts according to the desired finished size using the tips explained above.