Correcting pattern for different weight yarn

Hi folks,

I am new to the forum but have used the site before and love the talking directions in the glossary. Way cool!

Right now, I’ve found a nice pattern for a sweater for my almost 1 year old grandson. The pattern calls for sport weight yarn and my gauge got me to size 5 needles. But sport weight looks too thin to me for this pattern and the yarn choices I found were VERY UNINTERESTING. I found a nice deep red in worsted weight that recommends size 8 needles. Is it possible to use this pattern and just choose a smaller size of it (it comes in 6, 12, 18 and 24 mo. versions) to correct for the heavier yarn and larger needles? If so, if I was originally going to make a 24 month (he’s kind of a chunker and since it’s a sweater, I figure bigger is better), should I pare down to 18? 12? Or won’t this solution work?

Thanks for any thoughts. I am thrilled to have found a place to ask questions about knitting on line.


Hi Trish, welcome to KH. Baby sweaters are one of my specialties and I have come up against similar issues of wanting to change things. Others may weigh in with different ideas, but here are my thoughts.

If you work on a size that will give you the inches you need to make the 24 month using your new needles and yarn, you will still come up against some other problems. Any shaping will be a little different. They usually give shaping like for the neck over so many rows and with your gauge different it won’t work out quite right. If it is a pretty simple shaping and you are experienced you may be able to adjust it so that it will work. You will need to think about the length you need to get for the 24 month size. I don’t think you’ll just be able to take the new size and knit it exactly as given. It is a little more complicated than that. It may be easier to find a pattern that is designed for the weight of yarn you want to work with.

Are you aware ofKnittingpatterncentral? It is a site that pulls patterns in from all over the internet and makes them available from one directory. Check out the sections on both “Baby” and Toddler’ Clothing". The lit up word above is a live link directly to the page.

Another site I like real well for baby and childrens clothing is Drops Design/Garnstudio. This is a Norweigan site that has many of their patterns translated into several languages. Click on the English/American flag on this page and follow directions to navigate the site. Some patterns are marked American English and some are in UK terms. They are not too different than ours and we can help you here if you are unfamiliar with them.

I hope something works out for you so you can knit the red sweater you envision. Knitting for grandchildren is so fun.

for your insights. I had a feeling it wasn’t easy to do and while I am not precisely a newbie, I don’t “get” knitting intuitively, so I have to follow patterns pretty closely. I think your suggestion of finding a pattern to match the yarn is a good one. I’ll check out the site you suggest.


I think it would work out. There shouldn’t be too much shaping on a toddler pattern. The only thing is you would have to make it longer. So measure something he’s wearing now and use that as your guide. You may want to make it a bit bigger anyway for him to grow into.