Short Rows Make Me Happy


What I hate on just about every ready to wear shirt and sweater I buy is that they ride up in the front. It’s so unflattering but it’s really hard to buy a top that’s made for someone busty.
Since I’m making my own though, I knew I’d be putting in some short rows so I get a nice straight hem.
I’ve avoiding using short rows for bust shaping for no real reason. My years of pattern making training (albeit in sewing, not knitting) told me that they’d work well. But I was afraid to go to all that trouble and have to frog it back and keep tinking until I get them right.
Not any more!
I followed the instructions for the shapely tank’s short rows and it worked like a charm. I did 12 short row rows, which she said is for a D cup. I’m definitely a DD*, but any more would have made the sweater curve down. I have the same gauge too so I’m not sure what’s causing the discrepancy. No worries though because this sweater’s edge is perfectly straight!

I wasn’t sure how many rows to do so I tried it on every few rows. Once the bottom edge went straight across my body (no more upside U shape across my chest) I stopped and knitted across all the stitches, picking up the wraps as I went. The hardest part of the whole process was digging out the wraps from all the black yarn. Definitely something to do in sunlight.
I’m very pleased about the way the body is shaping up.
The neckline? I’m not so sure. It’s definitely a tiny bit wide but I planned on doing an edge anyway. I’ll wait until I’m done with the body to see how that turns out. There’s a little nagging part of me that says I’m going to have to frog the yoke and do slower decreases on the sleeve than the body to get the properly proportioned neckline (which is what I’d do if I were to start this top again). But, I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to make it fit well enough with some ribbing and a few well placed decreases to pull it in just enough.
Keep your fingers crossed for me, OK?
*I wasn’t sure if I wanted to post this on the web, but some of you have emailed me asking about fitting for larger busts so I decided to share. Believe me, there’s no bragging going on here. While I do certainly love my curves, it’s definitely a love-hate relationship. They’re heavy and make buying well-fitting clothing really difficult. But, when I find something that fits really well the curves can be fun and really sexy, too.
See, there’s that love-hate thing again.

16 thoughts on “Short Rows Make Me Happy

  1. I’m glad I read this. I never could figure out why my tops rode up in the front. I have a background in pattern design too, so I should have figured it out, duh. Now I know how to fix the problem. Thanks a bunch.

  2. WOW!! Looks great. I am so impressed with your ability to change things to make a pattern work for you the way you want it, too. It helps to have other patterns to pull ideas from, doesn’t it! Can’t wait to see the finished top.

  3. I, for one, am glad that you share about your short rows and other design techniques, because a) I am busty, too and b) even if I weren’t, I always learn great things by reading your blog. So please continue to share! :) Thanks!

  4. Thanks for sharing, Jody! Although I’ve an opposite problem, i.e. not enough bust, I still enjoy reading the solutions in the design process.

  5. looks great Jody! You’ve inspired me to start on a tank, I need something new to work on for the summer. Thanks for sharing another great tip!

  6. I can’t wait to start my shapely tank top – I’ve even got the yarn. Just need to sit down and really figure out how to do short rows for real.
    Your sweater looks awesome – thanks for posting and inspiring me!

  7. Preach, Jody! Preach! Tanks are the worst. Especially that they now all come with those wimpy shelf bras that couldn’t hold up a pair of limes.

  8. Thanks so much for your post! The top looks like it’s fitting very well. My next project is going to be a Shapely Tank, just because I’ve been curious to see how the short-row technique works. Now I’m excited to start!

  9. damn girl, have you lost weight? you are looking fine in the headless shots (which isn’t to say that you look fine because of no head, because you have a cute head. oh, nevermind!).

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