Can you customize a bought knit garment?

I was at the thrift store yesterday (I love them) and came across a few knit sweaters that I liked but they were kind of too big for me. I was just wondering, is it possible to somehow alter a knitted top with knitting techniques in order to make it more fitted? I mean, most store bought knitted garments are machine knit so I imagine that’s a lot different than hand knit ones. I’ve read about steeking…would it be possible to do something along those lines? Like, steek the fabric first then work from there to re-knit the seams or something to make it fit the body more snugly? I hope what I’m asking makes sense. I’m guessing that it would probably be a real pain in the butt anyways, huh? Maybe someday when I have more experience I’ll actually get around to knitting my own sweater from scratch, although I’m more interested in knitting sleeveless tops. Here in Loisiana I don’t wear sweaters much…I have a few, but since our winters are (relatively) mild I’m not keen on spending my time or money knitting them, hence my curiosity about altering thrift store sweaters to fit me. Any thoughts on this probably far-fetched idea? Thanks lots.

It’s possible to treat the knitted fabric this way. As with steeking you could run a line or two of machine stitching along edges and then create a new seam. I’ve never tried this but perhaps you could experiment with an inexpensive sweater, even a child’s sweater.

That sounds like a good plan…I don’t have a sewing machine right now but I’ve been thinking of getting an inexpensive no-frills model, just for simple projects in addition to or as a compliment to my knitting. Another thought, I have a few store bought (plain) knit sleeveless tops I’ve had for awhile that could use a makeover. I haven’t done much embroidery, but I suppose I could apply the same techniques (duplicate stitch, surface crochet, etc.) that are used on handmade knitted pieces to them too? I’d want to practice on swatches first tho. I like your idea of picking up a cheap children’s size sweater to experiment on, thank heavens for thrift stores.

There is also the option of finding high end yarn on the cheap in a thrift store sweater.

A quick search using the words “reknitting thrift store knits” found these three options at the top of the list. I have not viewed them so I can not speak to their content.
Repairing knits:

Redesigning sweaters:

Reusing yarn from sweaters:

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Hey I don’t know how far you have gotten, I have recycled yarn and felt with second hand sweaters abit.
One are you sure they are hand knit.
You will find online descriptions about how to tell!
Then you can cut the seeming thread/ yarn and unravel this usually will just shorten the sweater or arms.
Besides that I think streaking the side seems would work. You would have less trouble maybe if the sweaters were slightly felted🙂