Automating Pattern Writing Tutorial (Windows tested only)

Using MSWord’s AutoCorrect to Fill in Needle (Hook) Sizes

An FYI to the Mac crowd: I’m advised that the mouse directions in the tutorial work in Word for Mac users but that the keyboard equivalents do not.

So I finally became annoyed enough at having to pull out my knitting needle equivalent chart every time I was writing my patterns to actually do something about it, plus I was procrastinating just a little (actually typing everything out is my least favourite part of the design process). So I’m sharing 😉

This solution is for MSWord (I’m sure other software programs have equivalents? Please feel free to share your comments or advice here!).

Crocheters, I’m not forgetting you; I’m using knitting needle sizes in this example only because that’s what I’m working with right now.

One caution: if there is a possibility that you may use the same text in other instances, e.g. you’re writing your Master’s thesis and it includes metric measures, every time you type the AutoCorrect entry you are about to create, it will expand it to the full entry. Your thesis may read:

“in the given event, a shaft 5mm [CA/UK 6, US 8] in diameter was utilized to determine the normal and shearing stresses for a point on the outside surface at angles of inclination…”

so be forewarned!

Tutorial: AutoCorrect to Insert Knitting Needle Equivalents

Note: Keyboard equivalents are given in brackets

In MSWord, click Insert, AutoText, AutoText… (Keyboard: Alt+i, a, x)

This opens the AutoCorrect Dialog box.

In the AutoText dialog box, click the AutoCorrect tab (Keyboard: Ctrl+Tab 3 times)

The cursor is already flashing in the Replace: box; type the size of the needle – in my example (below): 3mm

Click in the With: box (Keyboard: press Tab)

Type the original needle size as well as the equivalents – in my example: 3mm [CA/UK 11, US 2.5]

Note: The original needle size plus the equivalents need to be typed in the With: box because Word will actually remove the original text i.e. 3mm, and replace it with the text typed in the With: box.

Click Add (Keyboard: press Alt+a)

Notice that the last entry stays in the Replace: and With: boxes making it easy to modify and add all of your needle / hook sizes at this point.

Be sure to click Add (Keyboard: press Alt+a) for each new entry.

When you’re finished, click OK (Keyboard: press Enter)


Try it out:

Type the needle size as you entered it in the Replace: box, press the spacebar. TaDa!!!!! The text from the With: box should magically appear. No more looking up or typing all of that extra data.

It’s one of those things that always seem too much trouble to do, until you reach a certain point…it’s all good now!!


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