Bang Out a Hadley: Choosing a Size

Figuring out what size to make is one of the first decisions when making a sweater. What’s your thinking with Hadley? Loose fit? Snug? Shaped? Boxy?

Is anyone considering a different SIZE of yarn? I could never wear something worsted weight… dead of winter and I am still wearing sockweight sweaters. I have NOT A CLUE how to go forward, I can probably handle converting the pattern once I have an idea of stitch number etc. but is that where I start? Simply knit a swatch that produces the weight of fabric I want and then start converting the stitch numbers?

I think that is what I would do but I can run pretty far out on the limb with no real facts. I want it to be generally loose, not shaped but not huge. I love knitting on smaller needles, 3, 4, 5, 6, so that isn’t offputting, and I don’t mind lots of stitches, I just want to be on somewhat firm ground when I start converting…

Words of wisdom anyone?


I start by choosing a finished size, with the bust measurement being the most important number. I’ll use myself here - I want a 39-41 inch bust. If I use a yarn that gives me a lovely fabric at 5.5 stitches to the inch I’d want 214.5 to 225.5 stitches at the underarm of the body. Instead of doing the 2nd or 3rd size, I’d then do the 5th.
I do hope that this is helpful.

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I see from the schematic (haven’t read all the way through the pattern yet) that there is some waist shaping in Hadley. And comparing the sizing info with the schematic shows that there is a nice amount of positive ease. I think that fits the style of the sweater and the nature of Shelter–a bit rustic (in a beautiful way), to my mind. So I’ll be going with the smallest size, which matches my measurements (in the sizing info, not the schematic). I’ll add a couple of short rows on the back, before the color work begins, to accommodate a curve caused by a couple of fractured vertebrae. I used to hate short rows–now they’re my best friends.


I think the biggest consideration will be getting the right stitch count for the color work. You will have to modify the repeats, but other than that, your searching and math is the right path. You may find the right stitch counts on a larger size anyway.

@jordiwaggoner–I think I’m going to use DK weight yarn. I thought I’d be using Shelter, with some Cascade 220 mixed in, but all my test swatches felt a bit too thick and heavy. Or maybe I’ll just knit two at the same time-- one in DK and one in worsted-- and abandon whichever one doesn’t seem to be doing it for me. So far, test swatching shows that I need to cast on for a larger size with the DK yarn. It looks like I’ll still get a sweater in the size I actually wear.

We’ll see how it goes.

The only sweater I ever knit ended up too small. Any references on how to pic the right size? That’s the most daunting thing for me

I think I’m answering my own question…so if my measured bust is say 38 inches then I would use the third size which has knitted measurement of 42 which means I’d have 4 inches of positive ease/roominess. That is assuming my gauge is correct. Is this right?

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Yes. I’m looking for a little less positive ease for my 37-inch bust and am going with the second size.

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The pattern calls for 2-4" of ease, so that sounds right. If you are unsure how much ease you want, you can measure a sweater where you like the fit and use that as a guide. But, either way, you are correct on gauge.

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I would recommend using a sweater that you already have and like. Measure it at the underarms and at the ottom and then pick the size that most closely corresponds. I liek the idea of measuring a sweater that you like becasue you do not have to figure out the ease-

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