It’s true, the 70+cm dolls don’t fit neatly into the calculations for 1/3 or 1/4, but you can still work with the same principles and arithmetic, using chest circumference as your reference.

For example, suppose I want to knit the Jamesey sweater, published in Knitty, for a Dollshe guy (note: if you carefully read the pattern, it refers to before/after shrinking as it’s intended to be knit in cotton and dried in the dryer…I have ignored these calculations for the purposes of the tutorial but if I were really knitting the sweater I would be thinking much more carefully about whether or not I needed to account for them).

The Dollshe 18M body has a chest circumference of 27.5cm or 11 inches. Looking at the sizing for the pattern, I see that it’s written for chest size 34-38″, 40-46″, and 48-54″. Next, I choose a measurement to set up my ratio – I usually look for an easy whole number, and since I’m comfortable with 1/3 and 1/4 size doll stuff I default to checking whether 3 or 4 will work. 3 x 11 = 33, which is smaller than the small end of small. 4 x 11 = 44, which is in the middle of the range for medium, so it looks like the easiest way to adapt this sweater will be to get 1/4 gauge (pattern asks for 19 sts/28 rows over 4″ so I will be looking for 19 sts/ 28 rows over only 1″ or 76 sts/112 rows over 4″, not that I have ever known anyone to knit a full 4″ gauge swatch for doll knitting) and then knit the medium as written (checking for length, especially on the arms, as BJDs are often inhumanly long for their circumference, haha).

If I’m having trouble getting gauge with the convenient numbers (or if my doll’s chest measurement didn’t fit so conveniently into one of the sizes), the real arithmetic comes in. I will need to find the relationship between my doll’s actual chest measurement and the chest measurement I wish he had if he were a human (I’ll call this “my ratio”). I’m going to set my goal on the top end of the small size, because I like my male dolls dressed in close-fitting sweaters rather than loose, boxy ones and say that I want to knit the small size and have it fit as though my doll had a 38″ chest. My ratio is my doll’s actual chest circumference divided by my goal apparent circumference: 11″ ÷ 38″ = 0.29 – as you can see, it’s just a little less than 1/3 (0.33). Here’s the tricky part to conceptualize: I will now divide the pattern’s gauge by my ratio (divide something by a number less than one, and you come out with a bigger number – with doll knitting, your gauge will always have more stitches per inch than in the original human pattern). 19 ÷ 0.29 = 65.5 and 28 ÷ 0.29 = 96.5, so over my 4″ gauge swatch I would have about 66 stitches and 97 rows. I divide those numbers by 4 to figure out a number I can work with a bit easier, and figure out that if I aim for 16 sts/24 rows per inch, I will be able to follow the instructions as written for size small.

Of course, to get this gauge requires pretty small yarn and needles – for comparison, 16 sts/inch means even smaller stitches than in my original design for Dollshe, Bernard, which asks you to achieve 15 sts/inch with laceweight yarn on 1.5mm needles to mimic the effect of a worsted-weight sweater on a human. If you find that this small gauge is difficult for you to achieve, you will want to look for patterns written for bulky or super-bulky weight yarn such as Mr. Darcy, also from Knitty, which starts with a gauge of 15 sts/4″ – without going through all the above calculations, I plugged my ratio in to estimate that I would need a much easier gauge of about 52 sts/4″ or 13 sts/inch to achieve comparable fabric.

Hope that helps! Happy knitting!

]]>Yay, happy knitting!

]]>An enthusiastic, young beginner – gotcha! 🙂

To put things a little in perspective, it takes me between 15 and 100 *hours* to knit a doll sweater, depending on the size and complexity (Box Opening Day Dress? Probably less than 20. Prototype for Ur-Bun? Probably close to 80.), so while I think it’s great that you’re so enthusiastic, I think you’ll learn a lot more from checking out the tutorials on youtube and knittinghelp.com that show you basic techniques like knitting in the round, and from practising a lot, than from watching my bored face knitting in front of the TV for 62 hours. When I knit doll clothes, I do it exactly the same as the relevant human garment – just on smaller yarn and needles! 🙂

Circular versus double pointed needles is a very personal choice. For me, it’s DPNs all the way, but a lot of people use circular needles with the Magic Loop Technique (because otherwise it’s hard to get a short enough circular – your cable needs to be shorter than the circumference of what you’re knitting, which in doll stuff is usually less than 12″, when most circular cables are more like 24″). DPNs are a little easier to come by since the sizes that are commonly used for socks also work well for dolls – I recommend starting with 2.5 or 2mm (2mm is a US 0) if you can get them, as they’re small enough to look pretty in-scale, but large enough to be easy to use. Trying out DPNs vs. circulars in human-scale is also a good way to figure out which you prefer before special-ordering smaller sizes – again, any skills you master in large size will serve you well when you scale it down for the dolls!

Good luck – ABJDs and knitting are both awesome hobbies to be getting into!

]]>how about …a video of you just making a 60cm bjd boy sweater ? 🙂

and do you use circular knitting needles of 4 double points?

(i'm 13,i'm just starting out,sort of^^if i start to bother you,just tell me to shut up^^) ]]>

You want a video…of me…doing arithmetic??? XD

The knitting part is exactly the same as for human-size stuff, and there are tons of videos already – check out KnittingHelp.com for a wonderful selection of basics. I’m really not sure if I could make a video that was any more helpful than this post…really, it’s all just multiplication and division!

could you maybe show yourself knitting an SD13 (1/3) bjd sweater,using one of your methods listed above to re-size it? i have a hard time understanding the simplest of things,but i can always understand videos! :)thanks in advance!!! ]]>

There are a ton of patterns out there for Kelly dolls. Really, for the really tiny ones, I think that is where I would start (ie. pukipuki, realpuki, lati white…..etc)

As for YoSd sizes, I was thinking that resizing a pattern for an 18″ doll might work better, but have yet to try it out.

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