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Making a Sweater Trimmer

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by ltontheqt, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. ltontheqt

    ltontheqt Senior member

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    Recently, in a thread I can't find, a member wrote about taking his sweaters to a knitting tailor for adjustment when they are too bulky. He said it was inexpensive to do, and the results have been good. In this case, the tailor was in San Francisco. How does one find such a specialist locally? Is this alteration an easy process? I am talking about taking in the sides. Will this make it out of proportion to the sleeves? I'd like to experiment with a sweater in which it won't kill me if it doesn't work out as I wish. Advice?
     
  2. Mr. Lee

    Mr. Lee Senior member

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    Where I am now, idn't it?
    Never heard of such a thing. I think most tailors would not even contemplate taking on the work.
     
  3. AB01

    AB01 Senior member

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    Many sweaters are bulky. I had to turn down a nice one today because it was way too big in the gut area. Otherwise it was amazing. Knowing I could get anything slimmed would be easier.
     
  4. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    Throw it in the washer/dryer
     
  5. Newlaw

    Newlaw Senior member

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    Throw it in the washer/dryer

    This... you really don't even need to wash it. Just needs to be soaked in water and then thrown in the dryer. Just check/watch it CLOSELY.
     
  6. alliswell

    alliswell Senior member

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    Never heard of such a thing. I think most tailors would not even contemplate taking on the work.

    Thanks for playing.

    OP-

    Take it to a tailor that works with women's clothes. They tend to have experience with a great range of fabric than Mr. Lee can imagine. You should be able to get both the body and sleeves taken in. Shrinking will shrink in every dimension, not just width.
     
  7. potemkin_city_limits

    potemkin_city_limits Senior member

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    I took a knit cardigan to a tailor here in Toronto and they altered it no problem. It fits great now. I think I paid around $15 to have the sides taken in. Ive been contemplating taking my Norwegian LL Bean sweater in sometime to have the same thing done. Its either that or Ill just shrink it in the dryer and then stretch out the arms again.
     
  8. impolyt_one

    impolyt_one Senior member

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    This... you really don't even need to wash it. Just needs to be soaked in water and then thrown in the dryer. Just check/watch it CLOSELY.

    I don't even know if you need to tumble dry it, just lay it flat and air dry it. We put a cheap uniqlo turtleneck in the dryer and it came out the perfect size for my 20 lb beagle. =\\
     
  9. sephlod

    sephlod Senior member

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    I usually have to size down when I buy sweaters because of the extra baggage. Historically, I've been pretty lucky with a high heat dryer cycle
     
  10. westinghouse

    westinghouse Senior member

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    Throw it in the washer/dryer

    Quickest way to destroy a wool sweater. You can easily shrink it too much, but even if you don't, you will cause the sweater to felt.
     
  11. Newlaw

    Newlaw Senior member

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    I don't even know if you need to tumble dry it, just lay it flat and air dry it. We put a cheap uniqlo turtleneck in the dryer and it came out the perfect size for my 20 lb beagle. =\\
    Haha, this has happened to me before. I take it out well before it is totally dry, and then lay it flat and let it air dry as you described. It really depends how much shrinkage you need. I lost about 25 pounds, so many of my sweaters were much too large. I figure getting them damp and using the dryer to shrink them was worth a shot... I definitely wasn't going to wear them as they looked like potato sacks, so I had nothing to lose with the dryer.
     
  12. BillyMaysHere!

    BillyMaysHere! Senior member

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  13. Green Lantern

    Green Lantern Senior member

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    My dryer came with a flat insert that is for drying sweaters and other items that don't need to be beat to death in the drying cycle. I simply submerge item in HOT water and allow to dry on flat surface..
     
  14. apropos

    apropos Senior member

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    Never heard of such a thing. I think most tailors would not even contemplate taking on the work.
    LOL, like how he equates 'never heard of it' = 'doesn't exist'.
     
  15. Green Lantern

    Green Lantern Senior member

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    I had to fire this maid who totally ruined 3 of my Malo cashmere sweaters!! I had also told her to NEVER machine dry my Raleigh Jeans.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. chasingred

    chasingred Senior member

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    I think you're talking about my post on this thread about how to choose sweaters. Knits are their own beasts, but generally, much of the logic in altering a jacket or shirt will apply to knits. Taking in the sides is the same for taking in a shirt - they just cut the sides open, take it in, and the sew it up again. Like shirts, this often comes with slimming down the sleeves. The knit tailor I go to charges $14 for this, and it comes out very, very well. It's not a complicated alteration at all. A more complicated job would be taking in the shoulders or shortening the sleeves, but this can also be done. An even more complicated job would be making the armholes higher. This kind of job is done in the way it's executed on a jacket - you take out the collar, take off the sleeve, cut the shoulder open, trim off the top of the shoulder, resew the shoulder together, and then reattach the sleeves and collar. Depending on how your knit is constructed, however, this might not be possible. Note that doing this will also shorten the length of the knit. Relatedly, if you only want to shorten the length of the knit, this will depend on how the ribbing at your hem is attached. Your tailor will be able to tell you if this is possible or even advisable. Like jackets, if you make sure a knit fits you in your chest and shoulders, altering the piece isn't terribly difficult or expensive, presuming you've found a good knit tailor. I've done some rounds with finding good tailors in my area. Some have been recommended to me through StyleForum, some through high end shops such as Saks. Remember these stores often have a specific shop they send all their stuff to, and they'll be able to tell you who they rely on. I've found that it's best to send in some "testers" first before handing over my nicer pieces. You need to be able to examine how nice their work is. Obviously, training your eye for tailoring can take some time. Wear the thing for a month or two and pay specially close attention to how clean the details are or whether things start to fall apart. Be extremely critical. Once you find someone who is excellent, it would be nice if you could recommend them in a thread that is about tailoring in your city. It's always nice to make SF a better resource for others. Lastly, if you can't find anyone in your city to alter your knits, try these guys: http://www.knitalteration.com/ I've never used their services, and they seem much more expensive than the people I go to, but they seem like an option if you live in the boonies. Addendum: I can't imagine throwing any of my knits in the washer and dryer, but to each their own. You guys wearing cotton knits or something?
     
  17. ltontheqt

    ltontheqt Senior member

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    Chasing,
    Comprehensive. Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks.
     

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