Download a Free Guide for Shaping

One of the advantages of crocheting your own tops and sweaters is the ability to modify them to flatter your figure. Need a little more room in the bust without affecting the circumference of the waist, or, like me, is there always too much fabric at the hips? Modifying a crochet pattern can seem intimidating, but with a little instruction and a few tips, you can modify any crochet top for a perfect fit. Here is an excerpt from our newest free eBook to get you started.

Top to Bottom: Shaping Part Deux, China Doll, Queen  Anne's Lace Blouse, Ripple-Lace V-Neck Top, , and Cubist Asymmetrical Cardigan.


In a group of fifty-seven or more randomly selected people, there is a greater than 99 percent chance that two will have the same birthday. But you'll probably never meet another woman with your exact body measurements. So how can you crochet a flattering garment from a pattern that cannot possibly offer shaping to fit everybody?

The suggestions [in this article] are meant to help you fine tune the fit of a sweater from a published pattern. The accompanying pattern, China Doll, involves shaping with a seamless, top-down approach, using a shell-stitch pattern, but the techniques are applicable to other garment constructions as well as to all plain stitches and many stitch patterns.

Start with the Best Size

The first and most critical decision you make when embarking on a garment project is which size to make. A sweater hangs from the shoulders; the parts that need to fit well from the start are the neck, the shoulder width, and the depth to the underarm. When you choose the size that fits you best at these points, the garment will not only hang properly from your shoulders but will be easier to adjust for the rest of you.

For most bodies, this means choosing the size that is closest to the measurement above your bust, under the arms, rather than the measurement at the fullest part of your bust-in other words, your bra band size. If you want a close fit, allow for minimal, zero, or negative ease; for a looser-fitting layer, you add the appropriate number of inches for ease. Ease refers to the difference between your actual body measurement and that of the finished garment. . . .

Hopefully, examining the way patterns can be tweaked to flatter your unique figure will open up a world of potential for your crochet garments.

– Doris Chan

I already use many of these great tips for modifying my own crochet garments. Download Customize a Crochet Tunic, Blouse and Pullover: 4 Free Crochet Patterns for Women Plus Shaping Guide today and learn to modify and shape your garments today.

Best wishes,

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