At Last: How to Knit a Good Fit

November 15, 2016

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  • Thank you, Franklin. I heard Amy speak at VKLive NY last year and thought she was fabulous. When I saw her latest book come out, I thought I should maybe pick that up sometime. Now I know I must pick up all three. Right away.

  • Oh, man, this is the book I’ve been looking for. As an appley shaped woman, I am so often disappointed by the look of sweaters on my body. Great review!

    • Just cast on the light blue cabled sweater from the front cover! Very excited. I even took photos of myself as instructed. It was incredibly helpful!

  • I finished my first Custom Fit (Knit, Wear, Love) sweater last month. I wore it to a guild meeting, and was overwhelmed by the people who commented on how well the sweater fit. Yes! I swatched faithfully, I had someone else measure me (without judgement), I entered all my measurements honestly, and I have a sweater that fits….everywhere. I can’t say enough for the method of patterning. I will be knitting more.

  • Does this book help in men’s fitting?

    • Check CustomFit on Ravelry there are a few men’s sweaters. I think the answer is yes.

  • Sweaters and people come in all shapes and colors. Thank you Amy!

  • You have now sold me on all three books. Now to update my Christmas wish list!

  • I have found my Christmas present request! Thanks Franklin for a great article

  • I’m so glad you highlighted the portion about gauge. I never “get gauge” on anything. For example, many sweaters in a worsted weight call for a gauge of 5 stitches per inch, and I naturally knit worsted at 4 or 4.25 stitches per inch on size 7 needles. I’d never be able to get 5 stitches per inch unless I went down to size 4 needles, and I think the fabric would be too stiff. So I always have to redo the math on any sweaters I knit or just come up with my own design. I regard most instructions as a starting point.

    My only question is, are all these people really walking around in stiffly knitted sweaters? How is it that they are happy with 5 stitches per inch in worsted? This is not a joke–somebody please answer.

    • Nina, you left out a lot of info about your swatch. Please use Amazon and take a “Look Inside” of Amy’s You Can Knit That. It will show you a lot of detail about evaluating swatches. If you made a large enough swatch, treated it the way you would the knitted garment, measured the stitches properly, you still have to consider if the fiber of your yarn will give you the structure you want. Amy suggests different ways to specifically evaluate the structure of your swatch. Different fibers, knit to the same gauge, will behave differently.
      I definitely see why Franklin said the swatch section was his favorite. It looks like very useful information.

  • Excellent reviews!

    My mother was an excellent seamstress and made all of my clothes while I lived at home and many after I moved out of state. From her I learned sewing skills and how to fit my body, but I’ve been fearful of translating those to knitting – LTS (lovelorn tyrannosaur syndrome). Now I know these are the books I need.

    Thank you!

    • Annie, you are exactly right. I also sew, and I’ve always used my sewing knowledge to inform my knitting.

  • Amy has good fit down. Her CustomFit program is excellent and I have dog-eared her books. The only thing that makes me scratch my head in disbelief is that her raglan sweater patterns are written to be seamed. That seems like a step back into the 60s, knitting-wise, but to each their own.

    • Amy is all about seaming because they had so much structure and support to the finished projects.
      I’ve made four Custom Fit sweaters, and learned that the seaming process is actually enjoyable!

      Because of a complicated stripe pattern, the last sweater body was knit in one piece (no side seams). This certainly insured everything lined up, and reduced the chance of “yarn chicken”. IT fits well, but really doesn’t “sit” as nicely on my body has the others (since the main structural support is only at the shoulders).

      • Totally agree about seams. All top European Knitwear designer garments are seamed. In the round is for people who don’t enjoy professional finishing and are quite happy to cut corners.

  • This is an excellent review. Thank you for giving words to my feelings about Amy’s books.

  • Thank you for the comment regarding seeing people in pattern books that represent those of us at the “upper end of the age spectrum”.

  • Wonderful review of 3 excellent books all of which I own. I discovered Amy on Ravelry and had the wonderful opportunity to attend her Make.Wear.Love. Fall retreat. As a new sweater knitter she and her books have given me the confidence to dive into sweater knitting and I admit to being slightly obsessed. If you haven’t discovered it her Custom Fit soft wear is a dream come true!

  • thank you – i look forward to each saturday to take time and make sure i read EVERYTHING….i love
    it and the columns and information. the dedication to knitting and all your hard work putting it
    together makes this incredible, each site you post is an adventure and jam packed with knitting
    tips and the love of knitting ….again, thank you…..

  • Really fantastic review Franklin. My hackles rose when I read your comment about math which inferred knitters (mostly women) were bad at math but when I saw your pic I realised you were being very cool and inclusive. I love men who knit !!

  • Dear Franklin, I regret to inform you that I’m going to have to stop reading your column. Every time I read your posts, I add more books to my Wish list!

    It’s hard sometimes to find good knitting books. And I so appreciate you doing all the work of reading and evaluating that I don’t even look on my own anymore. I just purchase what you have reviewed. Thank you for taking the time to contribute your opinions and knowledge!