(Know what you want to know? You can skip to measurements info, skip to gauge info, or skip to pattern customization info.)
How to Customize a Pattern with CustomFit
CustomFit makes custom knitting patterns that are written specifically to:
- Your Measurements: Before you customize your pattern, you’ll need to save a set of basic body measurements in your account
- Your Gauge: Before you customize your pattern, swatch in your yarn – and save your actual gauge in your account.
- Your Choices: From sweater construction (set-in sleeve or modified drop shoulder), silhouette (a-line, tapered, hourglass, half-hourglass, straight) to sweater length to sleeve length to sweater fit (close, average, relaxed, or oversized), you can make your sweater pattern exactly the way you want it.
Once you purchase a pattern through the shop, a credit for that pattern will appear in the “Ready to Customize” section of your CustomFit patterns page:
Before you can customize your pattern, here’s what you need to do.
Step 1: Save your Measurements (once)
To write your custom pattern, CustomFit will need to know the measurements the pattern should fit. You’ve got 3 main choices for how to save measurements:
- Make it standard. If you like, on the create a new measurement set page, you can fill in a measurement set with CYCA standard measurements for a man, woman, or child. (You could also start with standards, and then change one or two measurements.)
- Just the essentials. You can get a pretty great sweater with just some basic circumferences and lengths! Take actual body circumferences at the:
- Upper torso (women only). For busty women, taking an upper torso circumference (as high in the armpits as you can put the tape) will help CustomFit properly fit both your shoulders and your bust. Men and kids can ignore this one.
- Full bust/chest. A basic bust/chest circumference.
- Waist. Take a circumference at your natural waist.
- Hip. Take a circumference at the main width of your hips.
- Bicep. Take a circumference at the largest part of your upper arm.
- Wrist. Take a circumference at your wrist.
…and take the following lengths:
- The full deal. If you’d like to save every possible measurement for every possible sweater, that’s cool too. I’ve got an exhaustive set of YouTube measurement tutorials that you can watch.
Step 2: Save your Gauge
To customize your pattern, CustomFit will also need to know your gauge. You could enter a ball band gauge, of course, but I think that kind of defeats the purpose of a custom pattern! Instead, I suggest you swatch predictively, and measure your very own gauge as accurately as you possibly can.
Here’s how I recommend swatching:
- CO between 35 and 50 stitches.
- Knit in the stitch pattern you’ll use for the sweater, for at least 5” ( 12.5 cm). BO.
- Wash and dry your swatch the way you’ll wash and dry the sweater.
- Play with it! Do you like the fabric? Does it match what you have in mind?
- If so, you’re ready to measure your stitch and row gauge.
- If not, try again – with different yarn, different needles, etc.
I measure like this:
Once you’ve got a swatch you like, create a new gauge in your CustomFit account and you’re good to go. (You can save as many gauges as you like in your account.)
Step 3: Customize your Pattern
Once you’ve got a set of measurements and a gauge saved, you can click the “make a custom pattern” button under the pattern you’d like to make, on your patterns page. You’ll see a screen that looks like this:
Name your custom pattern, and select the measurements and gauge you’d like the pattern to be created for. Then, select the silhouette you’d like the sweater to have:
Each sweater will tell you what silhouette is pictured; the choices are straight (no shaping through the body), hourglass (waist and bust shaping), a-line (sweater hips are larger than sweater bust with shaping along the side), and tapered (sweater hips are smaller than sweater bust, with shaping along the side).
Then, select the fit you’d like:
You can see a visual explanation of CustomFit’s different fits by clicking here.
Finally, customize the sweater length and sleeve length if you like:
You can click the “change hem/sleeve lengths” button to see different sweater and sleeve length options. If you haven’t saved a full set of measurements for the body you’re using yet, you may be asked for more sleeve and sweater lengths.
Get your pattern! You can click the “customize fit specifics” button to customize your pattern’s dimensions even further, or just “get this pattern” to see a final summary for approval.