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Resizing a Cardigan Pattern, Part 2: Sleeve, Meet Reality

Resizing a Cardigan Pattern, Part 2: Sleeve, Meet Reality

Posted by on Jul 28, 2013 in Crafting | 2 comments

I’m making very good progress on crocheting the cardigan I’m resizing for my big and tall man. The body fits perfectly to the point I’ve reached, which is just before splitting for the back and both fronts. The one sleeve I’ve finished fits perfectly, too – but not because my initial math was perfect. Here’s something I should have realized from the very beginning: bodies rarely match the math you work out for them perfectly, and that’s just as true for men as women. I won’t completely rehash the math here; you can check the first post on this topic for my coverage of the sleeve math. Fortunately, I believe in repeatedly rechecking the fit of anything you’re making, so I only had to rip out 19 rows near the beginning. My original plan called for increasing the sleeve from the wrist about every third row, at least initially. As it turned out, that didn’t get the sleeve big enough, fast enough. When I tried it on my dearest at the 20-row mark, it was clearly too tight. That meant I’d need to do an increase row every other row. A quick try-on at the 20-row mark THIS time succeeded. Who would have figured my beloved had Popeye-like forearms? I certainly didn’t. But front-loading my increases worked, and I could work even for about 10 rows at the end before starting to decrease for the sleeve cap. That was…fun. For each increase row, I added one stitch at the beginning and one more at the end. But because of my gauge issue and how rapidly I’d have to decrease for the sleeve cap – to say nothing of the size of my beloved’s arms – I would have to decrease FOUR stitches for every row, over about 20 rows. Doing this caused the sleeve cap to cup, turning it into, well, a real cap. Though I felt a little concerned, this turned out not to be an issue. Or, for any programmers reading this, it became a feature, not a bug. When I tried the finished sleeve on my dearest, it fit perfectly. I used closely-placed safety pins along...

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Resizing a Cardigan Pattern for a Big and Tall Man

Resizing a Cardigan Pattern for a Big and Tall Man

Posted by on Jun 18, 2013 in Crafting | 0 comments

Say you love to crochet. And say that the man you love is big and tall. If you can’t find a good sweater pattern in his size, you might sigh with relief at the thought that your relationship is safe from the Boyfriend Sweater curse. If you’re like me, though, you’ll simply start calling it a “cardigan,” roll up your sleeves, take out your tape measure and calculator, and get into some serious math. To be fair, I’m going to tell you now that this is the first part of a series, and I don’t know how long it will be. I haven’t completed all the math for this project yet, but I did enough of it to make a start; I know what I need to do about the ribbing, the body up to the armpits, the sleeves, and the armscye. The rest will come, and when I get that far I’ll write another post. Right now, I’m going to walk you through what I’ve done so far, one step at a time. The first step, of course, is to choose the pattern and get the approval of your victim, er, recipient. In my case, I fell in love with Shannon Mullett-Bowlsby’s “The Varsity Sweater” in the September/October 2011 issue of the “Crochet Today!” magazine. This pattern goes up to size 2x; my beloved, however, is a 3x. In this case, that’s not a bad thing; I’m going up only one size. As you’ll see in a moment, however, I’m not going up one size evenly. The second step, even before you buy yarn, is to measure your cardigan recipient. Start with whatever measurement the pattern uses for sizing. In this case, it’s the chest measurement. The pattern’s largest chest measurement is 51 inches; my dearest’s chest measurement is a mighty 55 inches. If you work out the percentages, you’ll find that this is right around eight percent larger than the largest size. Need a little help? Here’s a percentage calculator I found online. I used the second line to find out that 55 is nearly 108 percent of 51. This means that I’ll need to buy eight...

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