How to Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller

Crocheting a smaller garment often yields a more flattering and comfortable fit. Furthermore, if you’re new to crocheting, making something small can be less intimidating than starting with a large project. Finally, adjusting the size of a pattern to fit your needs can help you feel like you’re creating something unique and special.

How to Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller

Making a crochet pattern smaller has many advantages. By shrinking the size of a pattern, you can often customize it to fit your needs better. You can adjust the length or width of garments, for example, or you can decrease the amount of yarn required to complete a project. Additionally, reducing the size of patterns helps if you are working with multiple designs and need an item to fit a specific space or area. Several methods exist for resizing crochet patterns, including changing the gauge, altering the pattern structure and measurements, or creating your own stitch multiple. In this blog post, You will learn in detail how to make a crochet pattern smaller.

9 Step by Step Processes for How to Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller

Step 1: Inspect the Crochet Pattern

Carefully analyze the pattern to identify any required measurements, sizes, or instructions. Pay special attention to stitch counts, yarn type, and gauge measurements. Decide how much smaller you want your project to be so that you will know what amount of adjustment needs to be made.

It is also essential to take into account the type of garment you are making and its intended fit. For example, if you are making a fitted sweater, you may want to decrease the width while keeping the length the same. On the other hand, if you are making a loose-fitting scarf, you may want to decrease both the width and length.

Step 2: Choose the Right Yarn

If your project requires a specific type of yarn, you will need to make sure that you are using a yarn with a smaller gauge than the one specified in the pattern. For example, if your pattern calls for a worsted weight yarn (4) and you want to make it smaller, you will need to use a lace or fingering weight yarn (1 or 2).

But if the pattern doesn’t specify a specific yarn type, you can easily substitute a smaller weight yarn to achieve the desired size. Just make sure to check the gauge and adjust accordingly.

Step 3: Adjust the Stitch Count

The number of stitches you begin with will determine how much smaller your finished project is. To make your crochet pattern smaller, reduce the stitch count by 10-20% for each row. This can also be done by skipping a stitch in each row. Keep in mind that decreasing the stitch count will also change the overall shape of your project, so make sure to consider this before making any adjustments.

You may also need to adjust the stitch count for specific pattern repeats, such as for lace or cable stitches. In this case, you will need to calculate how many times you need to repeat the pattern in order to achieve your desired size.

Step 4: Adjust the Hook Size

Using a smaller hook size will also help make your crochet pattern smaller. When using a smaller yarn, you should use a hook size that is one or two sizes smaller than the one recommended on the label of your chosen yarn. This will ensure your project turns out the right size.  However, keep in mind that changing the hook size will also affect the drape and texture of your project.

Using a Smaller Hook

You may also want to consider using a different type of hook, such as a Tunisian or double-ended crochet hook, which can help make your project smaller without changing the hook size.

Step 5: Follow the Gauge

Gauge is an important factor in adjusting crochet patterns to fit any size. Make sure to check your gauge before starting a project and adjust accordingly. If your stitches are too loose, use a smaller hook; if they are too tight, use a larger hook.

There are many different crochet gauge tools available, such as a ruler with marked indentations for stitches and rows or a gauge checker tool.

Step 6: Modify the Pattern Structure

Some patterns may require more significant adjustments beyond changing the stitch count or hook size. In these cases, you may need to modify the overall structure of the pattern. For example, if you are making a sweater, you may need to change the number of increases or decreases in each row to fit your desired size.

You can also modify patterns by changing the type of stitch used. For example, if a pattern calls for single crochet stitches, you can switch to half double crochet or double crochet stitches, which are taller and will use up less yarn.

Step 7: Create Your Own Stitch Multiple

If you are unable to find a suitable stitch multiple in the pattern, you can create your own. A stitch multiple is a sequence of stitches that repeats across each row and helps determine the finished size of a project.

To create your own stitch multiple, you will first need to calculate how many stitches are needed for one repeat of the pattern. Divide the total number of stitches in a row by the stitch multiple you want to use, and this will give you the number of repeats needed.

Step 8: Adjust the Number of Rows

In addition to adjusting the stitch count, you may also need to modify the number of rows in your project. If your pattern calls for a specific number of rows, such as for the length of a garment, you can decrease this number by 10-20% to make it smaller.

You can also modify the overall height of a project by adding or subtracting rows as needed. Keep in mind that this may also require you to make adjustments to the stitch count.

Step 9: Test and Adjust

Once you have made all the necessary modifications, it’s essential to test your project before continuing with the entire pattern. Start by making a small swatch using the new gauge and measurements to ensure that it turns out the right size. If needed, make any additional adjustments before continuing with your project.

By following these 9 steps on how to make a crochet pattern smaller, you can successfully make a crochet pattern smaller and achieve the desired fit for your project. Remember to carefully analyze the pattern and take into consideration all necessary measurements and adjustments before beginning. Happy crocheting! 

Safety Tips for How to Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller

Make sure you have the proper gauge of yarn and hook size for your pattern. The gauge should be checked by making a swatch before beginning the project and adjusting yarn weight or hook size accordingly if necessary.

Consider using a smaller hook than is called for in the pattern instructions to create a smaller version of the project.

Make sure to use the correct stitch to decrease the size of your project. If you are trying to make a pattern smaller, use decreases such as single crochet two together (sc2tog), double crochet two together (dc2tog), or skip one or more stitches instead of making them as instructed in the pattern.

When decreasing, ensure each decrease is consistent with the one before it to ensure a neat end result.

Keep an accurate count of your stitches and rows as you work; this will help you to adjust the pattern size easily if needed.

Look for other design elements that can make a pattern smaller, such as increasing the number of chains at the beginning and end of rows or decreasing yarn overs.

When all else fails, try something new! If you still have difficulty with your project size after all other adjustments have been made, consider trying a different type of stitch, which may create a smaller project.

Different Type of Stitch

Lastly, remember to have fun and be creative! Making a pattern smaller can open up a whole new world of possibilities for your crochet creations. With a little bit of practice and patience, you’ll be able to make any pattern size you desire.

How Can You Adjust the Number of Rows and Rounds to Get the Size You Want?

One of the best ways to make a crochet pattern smaller is to adjust the number of rows and rounds. This can be done by simply counting the stitches in the row or round before beginning your project. If you count fewer stitches than what’s stated in the pattern, your work will end up smaller than stated in the instructions. You can also adjust the pattern size by increasing or decreasing the number of rows and rounds worked.

When changing the number of stitches, be sure to consider whether you’ll need more or less yarn than what is called for in the pattern. If you’re working with a lighter-weight yarn than that recommended in your pattern, you may need to adjust the number of stitches accordingly so that your project won’t be too small or too large.

It is also important to note that when you are working in rounds, any adjustments made to the number of stitches will affect the circumference and width of your finished piece. If you want a wider or narrower circumference than that stated in the pattern, it may be necessary to adjust the stitch count.

How Do You Make Sure That Your Stitches Still Line Up With the Original Pattern When Making It Smaller?

Keeping track of the stitch counts is the key to ensuring that your stitches still line up with the original pattern when you make them smaller. Count each row as you work, and be sure that you have the same number of rows after you reduce the number of chains or stitches. This can be tricky because the pattern could become distorted if you add an extra row.

To make sure that your stitches still line up, you’ll need to adjust the size of each stitch in your pattern. This can be done by decreasing or increasing a certain number of stitches in each row or by changing the type of stitch used. For example, if an original pattern calls for a double crochet stitch, you could switch to a single crochet stitch to reduce the size of the pattern.

Using a Ruler or Tape Measure

Finally, using a ruler or tape measure can be helpful while working on the project. This will help ensure that you are making consistent stitches and that your pattern remains smaller than the original pattern. With these tips, you’ll be able to ensure that your stitches still line up with the original pattern when you make them smaller.

How Can You Adjust the Number of Decreases and Increases in a Pattern if You’re Making It Smaller?

Adjusting the number of decreases and increases in a pattern is one of the best ways to make a crochet pattern smaller. When decreasing, it’s important to ensure that you don’t decrease too much, as this can lead to an uneven or distorted shape. Similarly, when increasing, you’ll want to be sure not to add too many stitches, as this can also lead to the pattern becoming distorted.

In most cases, you’ll want to decrease or increase the number of rows in proportion to the size of the item being made; if you’re making something 10 percent smaller, then reduce each row by 10 percent, too. However, specific instructions in the pattern may take precedence over this, so it’s important to follow the instructions as closely as possible.

Customizing a Crochet Pattern

Finally, remember that it’s often possible to make adjustments in a pattern that don’t involve decreasing or increasing the number of stitches. You may be able to add extra details or embellishments or adjust the shaping of the pattern to fit your desired measurements, so don’t be afraid to think outside the box! With practice and patience, you’ll find that you have plenty of options for customizing a crochet pattern to make it smaller.

How Long Will It Take for Me to Become Proficient in Adjusting Crochet Pattern Sizes?

The time it takes for an individual to become proficient in adjusting crochet pattern sizes can vary greatly. It depends on factors such as the person’s experience level, how often they practice, and their ability to understand patterns and make adjustments accordingly.

For someone who is just starting out with crochet or has little experience in making pattern adjustments, it may take some time to become proficient. However, with consistent practice and a willingness to learn, anyone can become skilled at adjusting crochet patterns to their desired size.

It’s important to remember that becoming proficient in anything takes time and patience. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get it right the first few times – keep practicing and seeking out resources for help and guidance. With dedication and perseverance, you’ll be able to confidently adjust crochet pattern sizes in no time! 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Can I Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller by Using a Smaller Hook?

A: Yes, you can adjust the size of your project by using a smaller hook than is called for in the pattern instructions. This may require some experimentation and adjustment of yarn weight as well. You may also need to adjust the stitch counts to ensure that your project turns out as desired.

Q: How Do I Know How Many Stitches to Decrease When Making a Pattern Smaller?

A: The number of stitches to decrease will depend on the size of your project and how much smaller you want it to be. It is always best to carefully read through the pattern instructions and count the stitches before beginning your project. From there, you can adjust the number of decreases according to your desired size.

Q: Can I Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller by Using a Different Stitch?

A: Yes, changing the type of stitch used in a pattern can make it smaller. For example, switching from a double crochet to a single crochet will create smaller stitches and, thus a smaller overall project. However, keep in mind that this may also affect the overall look and drape of your finished piece.

Q: Is It Possible to Make a Crochet Pattern Smaller Without Changing the Stitch Count?

A: Yes, it is possible to adjust the size of a pattern without changing the stitch count. This can be done by adding or removing details and embellishments, adjusting shaping, or using different yarn weights or hook sizes. Experiment with different techniques to find what works best for your project.  Overall, it’s important to have patience and be willing to make adjustments until you achieve the desired size for your crochet pattern. 


In conclusion, there are several methods that you can use to make a crochet pattern smaller. Whether it’s by modifying the gauge, changing the yarn weight or size of the hook, or simply counting more stitches per inch – these strategies will help you create a pattern that is just your size! Taking some time to figure out what works best for you and your project will save you time and energy in the long run.

With practice, patience, and a little creativity, you’ll be able to create beautiful projects that fit just right. I hope reading this post has helped you learn how to make a crochet pattern smaller. Make sure the safety precautions are carried out in the order listed.

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Jennifer Branett

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