A Waist Shaping Calculator

The Northern Dreams Pullover by Julia Vaconsin is a perfect winter sweater. I love the colorwork yoke and the simple, solid body created with single crochet through the back loop only. This sweater is intended to be work with negative ease, giving shaping to its otherwise boxy construction. But there is no way I can fit into the smallest size, and the next the next size up, 36 ¼”, won’t provide any negative ease. And I love a touch of shaping at the waist. That’s the great thing about crocheting your own garments. You can add a bit of shaping or modify the silhouette.

That means a little math for a personal fit. Since math isn’t my strong suit, I like to use the Waist Shaping Calculator on Knitting Daily. This calculator was originally created by Sandi Wiseheart for modifying knitted sweaters, but it works exactly the same for crocheted sweaters and tops.

First I needed to enter the measurement information. For the gauge, remember to put the number of stitches per inch not per 4″. For the Northern Dreams Pullover that is 5.75 stitches per inch and 5.25 stitches per round. In the left-hand column I entered the original measurements for the hip, waist, and bust. In the right-hand column I entered the desired ease. I am leaving the bust and waist at 36.25 inches, but I want 2″ of negative ease at the waist.

Pay attention to any stitch pattern changes when you are modifying the stitch count. The Northern Dreams Pullover transitions from the single crochet pattern of the body to the colorwork yoke pattern, and I don’t want to modify the pattern only to realize that I don’t have the correct number of stitches worked to crochet the yoke.

Enter additional measurement information for the tops length and press submit. The waist shaping calculator will give you the number of stitches to “cast on” or begin with, the number of rows to work before decreases, the number of decreases to work over how many rows, and specifics on increasing.

Use the Waist Shaping Calculator to modify bust, waist, or hip measurements, back length, or even to design your own sweater.

Best wishes,


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