I was going through a pattern that had come back from the tech editor. She asked a very reasonable question in a place where I had put “or to desired length” after a knit-to measurement.
Her specific question was wouldn’t it change how the sleeve cap fit into the armhole if someone made an adjustment to the sleeve cap length. My answer is yes, of course it would, and I assume that someone isn’t just going to add or subtract length just because *they so desire,* but would be doing so for a specific reason.
But then you might ask, what are those reasons, and what will cause me a problem? So glad you asked!
First, I always put “or to desired length” after giving a specific measurement to knit to so someone needing to make an adjustment will know this is where to do it. Generally these are length measurements and they occur in places when nothing will be negatively impacted as long as any corresponding piece is likewise adjusted.
Second, I sometimes have a place where I give a specific measurement, like a sleeve cap, but if you change the armhole length, you are going to need additional length to match. This is a corresponding place. I assume that people who are making adjustments have some idea of what to do, so I don’t want to confuse the person innocently knitting along by throwing in a lot of possibilities they may not care to consider.
I’d like to add that this flexibility is one of the great things about creating your own garments. Likewise, it is the headache of anyone who doesn’t fit the standard sizing scheme that the pattern writer (me, in this case) is using.
If you haven’t taken your measurements recently, do it before you start another project. Although putting numbers to our shapes is sometimes shocking, knowledge is the only thing that will allow us to make correct size choices. Remember, you are the same as you were the instant before you got out the tape measure!
I am interested in answering questions about making adjustments to patterns, so let me know what interests you.