Sunday, July 31, 2011

Undertoad update

Just a quick note to show you I'm making progress on my Under Toad (aka Undercurrent). I've finished the sleeves, as you know if you read my blog; now I'm working on the back. Check out the darts I've put in to decrease from my wide behind to my narrower waist.

At this point, normally I'd doing increases to add room for my bustiness, but I'm going to try knitting straight up to the armpits and then doing the underarm decreases. All of my sweaters have ended up with a pool of fabric at the waist, as you can see in my Petrea.

I think this happens for two reasons. One, I've been making my armholes too deep. And two, I don't need the extra room for my bust at the back of my sweater; I need it in the front. So for this sweater, I'm going to do increases in the front only. We'll see what happens.

I was going to put in some short rows at the hips to counteract my sweater riding up in the back, but I couldn't do it without breaking up the stripe pattern so I'm skipping it. I'll probably regret this but I don't know what else to do.

Onward and upward - on the Under Toad back anyway. Meanwhile, I'm off to the pool before all the happily screaming munchkins show up and wreck my peaceful swim. :-)


  1. Julie

    Love your blog! I'm working on some plus size designs with another designer so I'm really interested in what you are doing. I agree that your armholes are too deep. I also think that they curve out a little too much at the front. Have you considered doing a knitters fitting muslin? This article listed here on “Fashion Doesn’t Stop at 40 Inches” Deborah Newton Threads 18, August/September 1988, p. 50 An “oldie,” but still my favorite article on making sweaters elegantly fit ample bodies. Newton recommends making a knit fabric mock-up to fit shoulders and sleeve caps and explore design options before knitting. This issue of Threads is out-of-print. It’s worth tracking down at the library or a used bookstore. The article was also reprinted in the Taunton Press book Hand-Knitting Techniques from Threads Magazine.

    I have the book and have done this for one of my knitting friends.


  2. I like the colors and how they blend so well!
    It is coming right along and will be perfect for fall wearing!
    The increase idea sounds logical. Fingers crossed..Buena Suerte!

  3. Robin, thx so much for your comments. I have Deborah Newton's Designing Knitwear ( and she discusses this technique there, too. I will revisit this again.

    Your post also gave me another thought. My sweaters have been too big in the back and too narrow at the bustline, too. I think I should take the bust increases at the back of the sweater and move them to the front. I've been knitting to mu bust measurement, but my bust is up front and there's not much in the back.

    Thanks so much!

    And Teresa, as always, thank you, too.

  4. Hi Julie,
    I've been following your fitting calculations and techniques for future reference, but at this point I'm beginning to get lost. How do you remember all of this??? Are you writing it all down, the 'what works' and the 'what don't work'?
    It's getting complicated!!!
    I hope you are planning to write a book. I know there would be a market for it.

  5. I think these darts are going to do the trick. I think you, and others, are saying that the extra bust accomodation needs to be up front, not the sides, and I would agree with that approach. I also agree that the armholes are too long. You could adjust the curve of the arm scythe to allow the same diameter, but have less a wider curve. That would not only shorten the armhole length, but take a little of the excess out of the back.
    Remember that you can get extra length in the center back with blocking, short rows are not the only answer.Looking forward to seeing the finished sweater!

  6. You (and your sweater) look gorgeous! I wish I was brave enough to start even a simple sweater.