I'm wondering if this idea is correct: that 的 can generally be appended to and adjective in order to refer to the entire class of objects satisfying that adjective.
Example: 好吃的 (delicious things); 我喜欢好吃的 (I like delicious things.) 漂亮的 (pretty things); 我喜欢漂亮的 (I like pretty things.)
What are the limitations of this idea, if it is even correct? How about 大的 (big things)? Can I say 我不喜欢大的 (I do not like big things.)? I guess that's a little vague more possibly, since 'delicious' (example above) obviously refers to food. I can imagine a casual conversation in English, where it would be appropriate to say "I like pretty things", and thus I'm wondering how people might say such things in Chinese, both formally and informally/casually/colloquially.
What if you told a friend to go purchase an item for you, and you wanted to colloquially say you don't want the "big one" (assuming the item has several size choices), could you say "不要大的", "不是大的", or just "不大的" or "不大"?
I'm most interested in what feels most natural to a native speaker. If I said either of the last four phrases above, would a native speaker know that I am stating a preference of not wanting the 'large size item'?