Resizing an Alice Starmore pattern

Hi everyone,

I bought a yarn kit from Alice Starmore’s website last year, it’s the Staran design ( in her Hebridean 3-ply. It’s a gorgeous sweater with some knit/purl detailing and some simple cables. The issue I have is that the smallest size will still be too large on me. It’s written for a 91.5 cm underarm, 86 cm waist, but I’m a 82 cm underarm and 66 cm waist. Now, I know how to resize a standard, simple pattern no issues. But I have never done a seamed set-in sleeve before and I’ve never resized a complex pattern like this one.

Can anyone recommend a resource that can help me do this?

Thanks a lot, any help is appreciated since I’ve been stuck on this for a while now.

Welcome to KH!
Beautiful Alice Starmore sweater.
Are the measurements you gave for yourself, the measurements of a sweater that you like or are they your actual body measurements? The pattern is giving measurements for the finished garment.
Sizing it down is not a simple task. You’re redesigning parts of the sweater. Here’s a site that may help in case the measurements you gave are indeed sweater measurements.

Hi @salmonmac, thanks for linking me this website.

Yes, the measurements I gave are for the finished garment (thanks for pointing that out, I got confused there) and the others I gave are for myself. So the finished garment would be 91.5 cm around the upper bust/underarm, but it should be 87 cm to fit me. The waist is a whopping 15 cm too large, so I definitely have to do something about that. I like a bit of positive ease (I gave it 5 cm here), but that might just be a bit too much :smile:

To create another challenge for myself, I can’t actually get the gauge of the pattern without pulling the yarn so taut that it hurts my fingers. And even then I can only get stitch gauge and never row gauge, no matter what I do.

So I guess I’ll have to sit down and re-pattern the sweater with my gauge if I want it to fit me… I was hoping someone might have a simpler solution and that I was making things unnecessarily complicated.

Can you drop down a needle size or two to get stitch gauge? Don’t try adjusting tension by knitting more tightly. That’s irritating to do and only works in the short term. You inevitably start to relax as you knit and the tension changes. This is supposed to be fun, not torture.
Stitch gauge looks like it’ll be more important in this sweater. You’ll probably knit to a given measurement rather than a number of rows anyway.
It’s going to take a bit of math and consideration of the armhole decreases and sleeve shaping. Give it a try and good luck with it.

I noticed it uses a dk weight yarn. You could try knitting with sport weight and see if that changes your gauge sufficiently that you end up with the size you want. Obviously you’d need to buy different yarn but you can always use what came in the kit for something else. Just a thought…

Thanks for that. I watched Alice Starmore’s video on getting her gauge and she suggested knitting tighter, which I tried but it didn’t really work for me. As you said, it’s torture. Normally, I would have tried dropping a few needles sizes but I thought I’d follow her advice first. But after what you said, I’m reconsidering. I’ll try again with a smaller needle size and see what happens. Thank you.