View Full Version : Big Girl Knitters... Unite!

11-08-2007, 08:31 AM
Ok, I admit it.. I'm a Big Girl. I'm typically a size 18-20 depending on the garment and came to grips with that a long time ago. While I'd like to lose weight for health benefits... in the meantime I can't run around nakey! http://www.century-oak.com/emotes/booty.gif

I love love the book Big Girl Knits :heart: It's funny and witty and has some really great patterns and tips for us Big Girls out there :woot: My problem is that I love chunky yarns. Right now I'm working with some Patons Shetland Chunky that I got on a kick butt great yarn sale and nearly have a very simple sweater done. The book says to stay away from chunkies because of the weight of the drape primarily once the garment is done.. but my problem is that I don't have alot of time to just sit and knit.. so I need something that works up fairly quickly otherwise I get bored with it... and I'd like to finish a sweater before cold weather is over with here in the South :knitting:

Any suggestions on patterns for us Big Girls or for yarns that have a little give, alot of color, don't cost a fortune and that work up fairly quickly? My next project is a wrap sweater and I'm leaning really hard towards doing it in this black Shetland I have (my one concession to this book is I can't give up black.. I love color, but I love black too :cool: ) but I really need some suggestions here.

Any other Big Girl Knitters out there? :grphug:

11-08-2007, 09:21 AM
I don't have any suggestions on yarn and such but I just had to say I LOVE that nakey booty shaking "smilie". :roflhard: You have made my day.:hug:

11-08-2007, 09:45 AM
I am a Big Girl Knitter myself, although I haven't made anything just for me yet. Right now I am searching for the perfect shrug and it is seeming difficult to find.

If you find a design and yarn you love, go for it!!!

11-08-2007, 10:16 AM
I'm getting bigger, much to my regret, and have always been very large up top even when skinny. I find that knitting at a looser gauge makes stretchy fabric so I can knit sweaters with 2-4" of negative ease and don't have to put in any shaping. If you like the yarn and the pattern, go for it. You can always undo it if it doesn't look right on you.

11-08-2007, 10:31 AM
Hi Donna! I think we have a lot in common :teehee: - I say use the yarn you love. If you are happy with the look, then that's all that matters. Wear what makes you feel good and happy!!

What part of 'bama are you in? I'm centrally located about 45 miles northeast of Montgomery. I think all the other 'bama knitters around here are in the B'ham to Huntsville area...

Take care!!

11-08-2007, 10:43 AM
I know, they are hard to find. :-( I'm looking fior one also.

~ Susan

11-08-2007, 11:01 AM
I have been knitting for about a year now and have yet to knit anything for myself besides a hat or scarf because of my size especially the chest area. Everything I see that I like the sizes stop short about 6 sizes from where I am at. And if I do find something the amount of yarn and the cost would kill a cow. I really would like to knit myself a nice sweater before the weather gets any colder I too would love a quick knit any suggestion?

New Girl
11-08-2007, 11:12 AM
I love that shaking backside! I am with you all. While you are searching for a great sweater pattern, let me know if you find a great pattern for socks for thick ankles and fat legs.:yay:

11-08-2007, 11:33 AM
BIG GIRL HERE!!!:waving:
I too love the way bulky yarn works up but don't want to look like a stuffed animal. I solved that by using my beloved chunky on SIMPLE vest patterns. At the moment I am finishing up a Hooded zip front vest (Knitting Pure & Simple) in Lambs Pride Bulky. Vests are a great QUICK project and I personally love vests.

11-08-2007, 12:38 PM
Add me to the big girls list! I haven't knit anything for myself yet, I've only been knitting for a few months. I am DYING to make myself a sweater, but I'm so intimidated by the amount of yarn called for in my size! :P I started a Bevin tank (http://knittingforboozehags.com/freebirds/bevin-tank-top) for myself and just added stitches, but I've only done about 4" of the back panel, so I have no idea how it's going to turn out.

11-08-2007, 12:52 PM
I'm working on my first attempt at a garment for me, a simple (hopefully) sleeveless top I found in knit.1 magazine. It's a 2x2 rib in' worsted cotton and I'm a little worried that it looks a bit chunky, but I'm going to finish it and see how it looks on. Just remember, there's an exception to every rule, so at least try it once and see how you like it.

New Girl - there is a formula in 'big girl knits' for adjusting socks and I just noticed these over at knitty.com


11-08-2007, 12:58 PM
Big girl here, too. I've never made mysef any clothing because I've generally found that the patterns aren't usually big enough for me. I would be ok, probably, until I got to the hips, and then stuff doesn't fit. So, I really don't have any advice, but I can sympathize. I do know that sometimes going up a needle size will give you a little bit of give in a garment, you just have to be careful not to make it too big. Hope this helps. :waving:

11-08-2007, 01:17 PM
Ditto everything ladyjessica said. I can usuall get things to fit up top, but when it comes to the bottomside, everything is too tight and short. Just lengthening the pattern does not work. (I generally like my tops baggy and to fall about mid-thigh) If you increase after the waist, it turns out looking like a maternity top. I sure wish designers would get out of the "model" mentality. Even if you find one that knits up to the right size, it's modeled by some tiny girl and gives you no clue to what it would look like on us bigger gals. I am going to knit myself a pullover someday. My best alternative is the men's patterns. They are longer and come in bigger sizes. I just need to adjust sleeve length.

11-08-2007, 03:36 PM
Try here ladies

11-08-2007, 09:48 PM
Wow, glad to see I'm not the only one :D

I'm almost done with the sleeves on this and am seaming up the sides now.. I'll post pics ASAP :D

11-09-2007, 05:08 AM
Hi everyone,
Try this site : http://www.bigcrafty.com/
She has links to lots of knitting, sewing and crocheting patterns that are designed for us .... non-skinny types!!:woohoo:
Hey! What do you say we set up a group? :grphug: Let me know what you think ....:thumbsup:
lotsa love, lulu

11-09-2007, 08:16 AM
LOL, LOVE the booty-licious emoticon (in fact, I had to snag it and post on another forum about the most AWESOME moon I'd seen in a long time, heh heh!)

Just wanted to say, I totally understand about patterns not quite fitting--my arms and legs don't fit anything but 'Tall' so all my patterns have to be tweaked...and sadly, not always successfully.

11-09-2007, 10:26 AM
Big girl here too... I've noticed that Knitty has a bunch that go p to 3x and sometimes bigger...

11-09-2007, 10:30 AM
I'm a bigger gal than you.:aww: I haven't knit anything to wear for myself other than scarfs. I do have that book and a few others for plus size knitting. I even have some nice patterns that I purchased online. Maybe sometime I'll give it a try. I'm afraid it will feel like I'm knitting the "thing" forever since it will have to be very large. I'll lose interest in it. I did begin a sweater for myself a few years ago and thats exactly what happened. I got tired of working on it.:knitting:

11-09-2007, 11:16 AM
I'm a bigger gal than you.:aww: I haven't knit anything to wear for myself other than scarfs. I do have that book and a few others for plus size knitting. I even have some nice patterns that I purchased online. Maybe sometime I'll give it a try. I'm afraid it will feel like I'm knitting the "thing" forever since it will have to be very large. I'll lose interest in it. I did begin a sweater for myself a few years ago and thats exactly what happened. I got tired of working on it.:knitting:

My size can range from 18-20 on some brands and 22-24 on others. Just depends on the brand! I can relate to the whole fear of 'stalling' - which is why I wanted to start out with a shrug. Now the challenge is to find a nice structured one!

11-09-2007, 01:46 PM
Count me in, too! I'm a bit intimidated by the idea of trying my first sweater, only to find that after all the work (and yarn) it doesn't fit! So thanks for the tips and the patterns.

And I like the idea of having a group, too!:grphug:

11-09-2007, 02:05 PM
Another Big Girl (don't like the expression, but it fits) here. I'm 6'1" and wear a 1 or 2x.

An idea before spending money on yarns, go to a store like Catherines and try on garments to see what you like and if chunky yarns make you look any chunkier, like they do me.

Our own Shendah, who mainly posts in the Charity forum, has a web page with larger size patterns. Some of them go to a 4x I believe.

Good luck, and if you find anything, be sure to let us know!

11-09-2007, 02:12 PM
Another big girl checking in! I don't have the Big Girl Knits book, but I don't knit clothes so much; mostly purses, bags, mittens/gloves, hats, scarfs, socks. I like more instant gratification then knitting a big sweater for me gives!

11-09-2007, 02:37 PM
Another "large and luscious" checking in (I passed "big girl" several sizes ago).:teehee:

I also haven't made anything for myself because I can't find patterns in my size. But I have been lusting over sweater patterns for even longer than I've been knitting. That's what inspired me to give knitting another try...thinking I could make something pretty for me (instead of the same old stuff you find available for big girls). I did purchase a beautiful (even though it's machine knit) sweater in my size from www.MakingItBig.com. It's a pullover, and I'm thinking that when I'm experienced enough I'll be able to figure out the pattern well enough to use it as a model for other similar sweaters. What I really want is a pretty cardi, maybe with some beautiful cable work on it.

I saw references on some knitting websites to someone who has developed an algorithm for enlarging patterns to any size you need but I could never find instructions on how to do it. :roll:

I'd like to see a group/thread on this subject as well because it does have specialized issues with regard to creating things for those of us who fit in this category (get it?? "fit in"):roflhard: . Oh well, I thought it was amusing!

11-09-2007, 03:05 PM
And again. one more big girl for the list.
I've tried garments for myself. Can be a bit hit and miss. some success, lots of failure. Frustrating and LOTS of frogging.
I too am larger on the lower half. Some pullovers I have knit & sewn an added wedge into the side seam to expand the lower area. That Works out really well. Best and easiest solution so far.
I've also tried doing tops in two parts. Start at underarms with provisional cast on and do top half as per pattern, then pick up and go down, increasing as required to get a better fit for the lower half. Works out o.k. but requires so much fiddling about and not suitable for all patterns.
Love the top down Raglan idea, but again, not always flattering for the bigger Body, especially if you have quite narrow shoulders like me. I am actually trying one though, just to see. :pray: Not much to lose at this point.
P.S. Love knitting blankets. Never have any style or size issues with those.

11-09-2007, 03:44 PM
Ok I am in after being in denial:pout: for awhile.
My problem is, small on top and wide on the bottom. I hate being this way but what can I do.:shrug: Mine is from the meds I have to take for nerve damage. Oh well I do try hard to accept that I am now going to be a big small lady the rest of my life.:roflhard::roflhard:

So right now I am making a shawl and it is coming out really nice.:) I don't think I am ready to make a sweater yet. If I do I am going to make it in the yarns that I like. So if you like the Bulky go for it do what makes you happy.

11-09-2007, 04:02 PM
Here's another one! :muah:
I'm probably about a size 16 -18 and I love those big, baggy sweaters.
Comfort, thats what I'm all about at this stage of my life.
I am in the process of knitting myself a sweater....but took a break to knit my mother a shawl (not easy!) and some other stuff for my grandbabies. I'm sure I'll get back to my sweater...sooner or later..

11-09-2007, 05:04 PM
What's this 'big girl' label I'd like to know. Why aren't the skinny girls labled as TOO small or in the negatives... like MINUS 14 or whatever? Ooooo that would be just too nice to the female physique!

And what would the movie people do if they couldn't brain wash society that only skinny girls are sexual and thus acceptable to the societal male? Gasp what a travesty that would be! ahahhaha

I can just see it though one day... all the skinny girls being made ashamed for their size cuz it's the so called 'big girls' who are the love interesests in the movies. Now wouldn't that be mean!?!

I'm not big.... the 'others' are just smaller. ahahhahahhhh Really why they don't have MY size be size 2, and everything bigger or smaller based on that, I just don't know. Compared to some ladies in other countries a US size 2 is practically plump! But who wants to have to pay attention to that? Not the so called 'plump' girls, I'm sure. How about if sizes were just in the inches or centimeters used in that country? I'd be a size whatever because that's how many centimetres I AM... not because someone decided I was a size 200. ahahhahahahahh

Ok enough complaining about the injustices of a crazy world. It is crazy after all.


When my sister and I go shopping... everythig we don't keep is a size two... TWO big or TWO small.

11-09-2007, 11:48 PM
haha I Agree!!!

I learned long ago that men LIKE curves.. no matter what the fashion mags say. A little "junk in the trunk" never hurt nobody ;) Well.. unless they get in our way at the LYS http://www.century-oak.com/emotes/booty.gif

I'd love to get a group together... I think we could all use all the support we can get :) (pun intended :P :P )

11-10-2007, 02:17 AM
Why aren't the skinny girls labled as TOO small or in the negatives

AND, to take off from there, why, if they charge plus sizes an additional fee, say $5.00, why don't they lower the prices for petite sizes? Why should they have to pay the same amount as the regular sizes?

11-10-2007, 08:32 AM
For everyone on Ravelry, there is now a group called "The Curvalicious Sisterhood" (http://www.ravelry.com/groups/the-curvalicious-sisterhood) for all the problems and questions and hints raised here :) I'm going to make a badge and banner for it a bit later, but for those not on Ravelry we can do the same kind of thing here (If Amy doesn't mind).

The problems we face are unique.. but it's a sisterhood I'm proud to be a part of :)

11-10-2007, 09:15 PM
Count me in. I so want to make myself a cardigan. My size ranges from 18 to 24, depending on the maker. And I hate anything that binds. I have a booklet of patterns from Leisure Arts (circa 1997): The Complete Book of Raglan Sweaters. 14 patterns, pullovers and cardigans, and many have sizes from a child's 6 months to an adult's chest measurement of 50 inches. And then you go down given chart, filling in the appropriate numbers for your size. The largest chest size of 50 inches has a finished ease of 6 inches. Now, I know nothing about proper measurements and such, but I'm going to give it a try.

11-11-2007, 02:28 PM

I have 2 booklets of sweater patterns for "Big & Beautiful" & "Full Figure Fashions". The first has 9 patterns and the 2nd has 6 patterns. I'll be happy to mail them to the first person to PM me with an address. Be sure to specify which yu want, or both. They are fairly old, and came from eBay a few years ago.

11-11-2007, 07:17 PM
Guess we may never know the great complextiies to the great questions. Oh and I have seen the so called larger sizes cost more so someone has already taken care of that complaint.

The labels are still funny no matter what... like so many things in this world they actually hide more than they reveal truth. I wouldn't mind being a size 40 because that's the size my hips and bust are in inches. I CAN live with that... it's this 2X, like I'm twice wrong for being the size I am or something, that's hard to swallow like many of societie's beliefs today.
Like another poster said... many men like curves; and my being voluptuous definitly fits that! hhhehehehh Wonder if the male knitters are like, ... "I think I'll ignore this thread!" ahahhahahah Them be wise guys.

So now to save up lots of pennies for ALL the wool I'll need for garment. Actually what can save on money is to knit with holes or very loosely and wear a camisol (spl) or tank top underneath... or one of the almost paper thin shirts they have for layering. That way we'll still have chunky knits just not so uniform but more open and airy.

I do have one curious point... if some of you 'big' girls want chunky yarn, that's going to make the sweater very warm... you really must not weight that much because a sweater would make me roast and sweat! You sure you all just don't have weird mirrors? ahahhahahahhah


11-11-2007, 09:01 PM
Noo Nancy lol I just started a pullover with Patons Shetland Chunky, wound up leavig it a vest instead an LOVE it! Working on the 2nd now :)

11-12-2007, 08:48 PM
I'm in the same boat too, ladies. I'm an 18ish, but my "biggest" problem is my boobs. I've been knitting for years, yet have not attempted a sweater for myself because I was worried it would look horrible on me. I tried knitting myself a shrug once. I made it according to the largest size the pattern had, but it was still a bit too snug. I gave it to my sister who appreciates it, but still, I splurged on cashmere; my little sister doesn't appreciate cashmere. ;) I knit socks. They always fit.

11-12-2007, 10:48 PM
I am a pretty solid 2X you know how it goes some stuff is 1X some is nippy at 3X regardless I still like it fashionable and comfy.

I am searching for unusual and attractive patterns as well and will gladly share some of my discoveries.

Here is one pattern company that I discovered at my LYS most of the tops come in a more generous size than most pattern companies offer

Twisted Sisters knitting Double Happiness Coat is on my needles right now, I am about half way

I am also intrigued by the book Knit Kimono but haven't actually looked through it to see if there are larger sizes offered, just going by the premise that Kimono's are usually loose and oversized

11-13-2007, 03:28 AM
Does anyone find it ironic,like I do,that one of the largest manufacturers of clothes for large sized women is Sag Harbor? Is that a joke?:tap:

11-18-2007, 04:26 AM
Hiya guys,
Add me to the list of bodacious, bootilishuss babes with more junk in her trunk than that j-lo chick.
I've knit a few things for myself (and crocheted too). Yeah, I know, I had to tweak the patterns a little (but dang I do that anyway, I'm a rebel with a push-up bra, I tell ya).
I know it's a real pain in the butt (sometimes literally) when you try something on that you know should fit but doesn't or you've made something and sometimes if yer like me, built like a freakin linebacker, you still feel like you're handcuffed behind yer back. (the ol' wide shoulder thing).
I too also suffer from the dreaded "kankle" (as my kids like to call this hereditary mallaise).
I try to shy away from tapered pants. ( I know I watch way too much Style channel). I also shy away from blouson sweaters (ribbing pulling in the bottom) and raglans and dropped shoulders (set in sleeves work wonders to make it appear like we actually HAVE shoulders). V-necks are great too for that ever important visual elongation thing.
Vogue knitting had a wonderful write up about sizing and fooling the eye with patterns and sweater styles for the blessed goddesses that we are. (didn't they find goddess statues in etruscan burial sites or something in national geographic? If I remember correctly, they sure didn't look like Naomi Campbell!!) O, yeah, the Vogue Knitting thing, yeah it was in the 25th anniversary special edition of their zine. Right along with some wonderful patterns for our goddess like frames. I think it was written by Lily Chin (let me look, yep, sho nuf was).
Well, dang, I think I've wreaked enough havoc on ya'lls eyesight for one sitting.
This is gonna be fun!!!!!:woohoo:

11-18-2007, 09:00 AM
LMAO @ MadDeb & Fibrenut .... you ladies crack me up!!

11-18-2007, 12:16 PM
Check out the Donna sweater at Magknits, it might be what you're looking for.

11-18-2007, 07:38 PM
Donna # 35 post,

Hey got any pics of the vest? Would love to see it on the site if I could.