Sizing problem with vintage pattern--Need help!

[SIZE=3][/SIZE]My mom asked me to make a sweater using a pattern from my grandmother. It’s probably from the 60’s. It’s a set-in sleeve sailor-style cardigan. The sizing is completely different from current patterns (see below). Mom said to make size 16 (she usually wears an 8), but it’s about 2" too narrow across the back. I’ve got the back of the sweater finished–or so I thought!:wall: My gauge is exactly the 11sts/2inches called for, but it’s too small. :hair:Mom is 19" across the back below armhole shaping, but the sweater is 18".

So here’s my question: Can I make the front of the sweater in a size 18 or 20 width (see below for a size chart for both Mom and the pattern) keeping the length even with the back and make it work? I know I’d have to re-do the shoulder shaping of the back, and I know the side seams would end up being a bit towards the back, but would it work? Or should I frog the whole thing?:frog:
[SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]Mom’s sweater measurements: (from a sweater she likes)[/FONT][/SIZE]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Chest (buttoned) [B]18 1/2 " Whole front at underarm[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across back at underarm [B]20"[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across back above underarm shaping [B]15"[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across each front at underarm [B]R 9 1/2 L 9 1/2[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length of each side seam [B]R 13 L 13[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length from shoulder to lower edge [B]Body 21 Sleeve 22 1/2[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length of sleeve seam [B]R 18 3/4 L 18 3/4[/B][/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across sleeve at upper arm [B]Rl 7"[/B] [B]L 7"[/B][/FONT]

[FONT=Times New Roman][B][FONT=Times New Roman]Pattern Info: Sizes[/FONT][/B]
[FONT=Times New Roman]16[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]18[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]20[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Supplies: Main color Ounces:[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Contrast: 1 Ounce[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]#3 & #5 Needles[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]24[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]26[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]28[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Blocking measurements:[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]36[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]38[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]40[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Actual knitting measurements[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Chest (buttoned)[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]39[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]41[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]43[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across back at underarm[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]19[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]20[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]21[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across back above underarm shaping[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]13 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]14[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]14 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across each front at underarm[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]10 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]11[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]11 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length of each side seam[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]13[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]13[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]13 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length from shoulder to lower edge[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]21 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]22[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]23[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Length of sleeve seam[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]18[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]18[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]18 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]Width across sleeve at upper arm[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]14[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]14 ½[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman]15[/FONT]
Gauge: 11 sts =2”; 7 rows=1”[/FONT]

Thanks in advance for your advice!

The chart didn’t come across in my post. If anyone wants me to email it to you, I can. The PDF of the file is just too big to post.
Thanks!

So here’s my question: Can I make the front of the sweater in a size 18 or 20 width (see below for a size chart for both Mom and the pattern) keeping the length even with the back and make it work? I know I’d have to re-do the shoulder shaping of the back, and I know the side seams would end up being a bit towards the back, but would it work? Or should I frog the whole thing?

I have done this and it does work to a size limit.
I added the extra sts to the fronts, and adjusted the underarm shaping to compensate. (adding the cast off St’s not on back armhole to the fronts) and yes the seam will be toward back & not center side. So you would have to frog to armholes shaping. But better than all the way right?
Too much too add and you can’t work it into the armhole shaping.

e.g. You need an extra inch on back, so start fronts in largest size but shape armholes for 2nd size with extra added cast off sts and then dec, to get finished size you need. and shape back armholes with no cast off sts and just dec’s.

Make sense?:pray: :??

This method works to make things smaller as well.

Thank you SO much. :hug: It makes sense in my head, so I’ll see if I can translate that to the needles!

A few questions:

I’m guessing if I knit the sleeves in the round instead of flat, it will work better, since there will then be no seam? I was planning to knit both sleeves at once, but in the round may work better if I do it with the front the bigger size than the back? Trouble is, my gauge is a little different in the round…:wall:

To clarify shoulder shaping: Frog the back to shoulder shaping and re-knit with fewer decreases so st number matches the larger (18) size.
On FRONT, I start with the size 20, but when I get to shoulder shaping, I’ll have to switch back to size 18?

Thanks again!:heart:

that’s the problem with today’s “vanity” sizing. what was considered a 10 in the 50’s/ 60’s would be labeled as a 6 or 8 today. Manufacturers found out that we women buy more clothes if we think we fit into a smaller size… something to keep in mind for your next pattern adjustment…

No kidding! In fact, for my Mom, a size 18 will equal an 8! Speaking of vanity, it’s b/c of Mom’s vanity that I started with the 16. She said, “Surely, I won’t need bigger than that!”:whistle: Who am I to argue?!?

So now I get to frog and knit more! [SIZE=2]:smiley:
[/SIZE]

[SIZE=2]In this situation I would frog back to before you start armhole shaping. about half way down? not just shoulders. that way you can adjust the shaping to get the bigger size. [/SIZE]
See pic. as it will be post changes

[SIZE=2]The sleeve you can do larger size as required just remember when sewing up the sleeve and side seems wont line up, sleeve seem will be in centre of cast off sts. [/SIZE]

:hug:Thank you SO much!:hug:
I think I’ll do the sleeves in the round to avoid unmatched seams.
GREAT pictures! They make it so clear! How’d you do that?:scratchinghead:

:thumbsup: glad to help.
A picture paints 1000 words.

Happy Knitting.

I knit the left front to the armhole shaping and now need to begin the BO. How many stitches do I BO and how many decreases do I do? Here are the directions for each size: (I’m knitting size 20 to the shaping in front and have 62 sts, 16 to the shaping in back and have 104 sts and need to bring both front and back to the size 18 for the armhole to get it centered.)
Directions for sizes are in order: (16, 18, 20)
LEFT FRONT:
BO 6, 6, 6, sts, complete row. At same edge dec 1 st on every other row 7, 8, 9 times ending at front edge. There are 45, 46, 47 sts.
BACK:BO at beg of nexxt 2 rows 6, 6, 6 sts. Dec 1 st at both ends of every other row 7, 8, 9 times. Work even over remaining 78, 82, 84 sts until length from first row of armhole shaping is 8 1/2, 9, 9 1/2"

I already tried BO 8 sts on the left front, but it seemed to still be under my arm. I’m thinking BO 10 sts?

I think once I get these done, I should be able to follow the instructions for the size 18, right?

One additional question: for the decreases, on the left front, do I do a right slanting decrease or a left slanting? I know I do the opposite on the other side, but I need to know which goes where.

Thanks in advance!

[COLOR=black][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]Phew! :?? The numbers don’t quite work out as I had expected. Overall you will have 8 extra sts around body in width. thats about 1.5 inches total. I hope that makes it big enough. (It doesn’t seem that much?) :think:[/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR]
[COLOR=black][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]but the following will work with what you have. You will need to cast off some sts on back after all, to make it work. Whatever dec. proportions used you need to end up with 46 sts on front, and 82 sts on back. then continue as stated for the size 18.[/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR]

[COLOR=black][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]BACK: (104 sts) BO at beg of next 2 rows 3 sts. Dec 1 st at both ends of every other row 8, times. Work even over remaining 82, sts until length from first row of armhole shaping is 8 1/2, 9, 9 1/2"[/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR]

[COLOR=black][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]LEFT FRONT: (62sts)[/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][COLOR=black]BO 9 sts, complete row. At same edge dec 1 st on every other row 7, times ending at front edge. There are 46, sts.[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]

[COLOR=black][FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]The dec. method used is your choice really.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman] I would do inward slanting, toward centre front or centre back. Left slant on left front, Right on right front.[/FONT][/SIZE]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]:pray::pray:[/FONT][/SIZE]

It IS tricky! Thanks SO much for helping me figure it out! I’m not sure yet if the 1 1/2" will be enough of an increase, so I’ll finish the fronts first before I frog and re-do the upper back. I may even knit the sleeves first. I’ll be traveling to see my Mom in a few weeks and its for her. I can fit it on her then, but I’d like to have most of it done before I get there.

Thanks again for your help!:hug: You’ve been WONDERFUL!!:thumbsup:

Happy to help.
Best of Luck.:wink:

My Mom thanks you, too! As you can see, the fit is perfect!

Awesome , what a great result. thanks for posting. Love it.