Teen patterns?

I have a knitting buddy – an adult in her 30s – who is a size 0 or 2 in purchased clothing. We have been having a lot of fun lately planning upcoming projects, BUT my friend, who would love to make some cute tank tops or short-sleeved sweaters, keeps finding the smallest patterns go down only to a 32" bust size. She thinks she may be more like 28" or 30". She isn’t short, so our brainstorm is that she might fit well into teen patterns, where the size range is somewhere between 25"-31".

We saw one teen pattern in Interweave knits magazine for which the sizing was just perfect, but our local shop didn’t have any other patterns that were small and still fashionable (kids patterns are too cutesy and are proportioned wrong).

I don’t think my friend has the desire to design her own sweaters – she’s really hoping to find a pre-existing pattern source for teen patterns. Does anyone know of any source with stylish, pretty teen patterns?

I have a friend who is very petite and I remember her mentioning that she takes a size 0 or size 2 depending if the company is American or European. (European sizes are usually one size larger than American, but also much more accurate to match you measurements).

Here is a link to a European company (Rebecca) with an example of a free pattern of a tank top:

Tank Top

My friend also knits and she says that Rowan really fits her well. Also a European company.

I have to run to do my own shopping atm, so if I find more, I will post later. Good luck!!

Thanks, beldaraan,

I copied the pattern you posted and couple of others from Rebecca (my friend doesn’t have a computer).

When your friend makes those and other patterns, has she ever experimentsed with smaller needles/smaller gauge for making garments closer-fitting or smaller-sized? If so, do the garments end up proportional?

I’ll ask her about it and pass on the message. I remember that we talked about sizes a little bit, but I never thought to ask her about her first projects. Once she got her hands on Rowan, she was set. I recall though, that she had a couple of other mags sitting in with the large stack of Rowan, so I’ll see what she has to say.

Will be back with a response at some point soon hopefully. As a warning, she’s terribly busy at work and sometimes doesn’t get back to me right away.

Thanks! No problem if she doesn’t get back to you right away. We all have busy lives. I’ll try to remember to bump the thread after a while.

Welcome Eggplant!

I have no experience on resizing patterns in this particular way, but I’m thinking that you might indeed be able to use a finer gauge, as you were saying, and just make the body and sleeves longer to fit. It seems like the rest of the proportions would work fine, doesn’t it? As long as the pattern being refered to wasn’t huge; then the neck, for instance, would end up being tiny. But for a relatively small adaptation, I bet it would work fine.

The areas to double check would be the neck and the armholes. You could knit the armholes before making the sleeves, and try on the sweater armholes to see if they fit; if too small just keep knitting that armhole opening before binding off. When you knit the sleeves, adapt them to match. A straight-capped sleeve will be easier to adapt than a curved-cap sleeve. If you’ve lengthened the armhole opening, then you’ve also lengthened the neck opening, so that would probably solve any necessary adaptation there.

Hope that helps. Worth a shot, if she finds a pattern she “must have” that’s not in her size…


Thanks so much, Amy! I’ll print out this information and pass it on to her. :smiley:

Oh, I almost forgot! She could also use a sweater-design program, to make her own custom-fit sweaters. These programs are great, and not hard to use!

A great program is Sweater Wizard 3.0. You can download a demo of the program here. KnitPicks has a great price on it, with free shipping (here).
She can customize the measurements to fit her. The program is incredibly easy to use, and is surprisingly versatile and very easy to customize. And it creates a totally normal, very easy to follow pattern.

Another program is Knitware Sweater Design 2.40. Go here to download a demo.

I was just playing with the demos of these programs last night. I especially like the Sweater Wizard. Lots of options! It even gives you options for how you want to knit the garment: flat, in the round, top-down, and even side-to-side!

I don’t know if there are default women’s sizes that would suit her, but she can at least choose the child’s size, and then lengthen the body and arms to fit her. It’s very easy to adapt the pattern.


Unfortunately, my friend doesn’t have a computer (which is why I am asking all these questions on her behalf). However, I can think of a couple of other people who would be interested in design programs. 8)

If you haven’t read it in one of my other posts, I’ll say it again: THANK YOU, AMY! Your site is such an amazing resource, and you are so kind to all of us who come here with our many questions. :smiley:

Leisure Arts has a book of sleeveless tops and tank tops. The booklet is Trendy Knit Tops. They have X-small starting at 30". They are not actual sweaters (no sleeves), but the are X-small.


Thanks for all your input, everyone! I’ve been printing out your collective wisdom for my friend, and she sends a big “Thank you!” as well. :slight_smile: