Simple fix of a hand knit

I wanted to wear this when I went out the other night. Knitted years ago, it is a comfortable, fun piece with the colors of the season. I wrote about it, HERE.

When I put it on, the vest-dress didn’t look the way I wanted or the way I remembered. Hmmm So, it was a quick wardrobe switch for that night and a mind left wondering what/why I wasn’t happy with what I was seeing. I do have a habit, in this case a good one, to fix what is bugging me when I find myself less than satisfied with something I have made. Trying it on the next day, I quickly noticed what I didn’t like.

Too big in the waistline. It felt baggy. Perhaps, stretching from wear or a weight change. Re-knitting the piece was out of the question however, I know that elastic can do wonders. The piece has seams so I was in luck there. I had a plan.

I took wide seam binding,

ironed out the middle fold, and hand sewed it in the inside along a stripe. (How lucky the garment was in stripes, a natural straight edge.)

I sewed the binding above my natural waistline from side seam to side seam. Without seams, there would be no anchor, start or finish point for this technique. This formed a casing. I sewed the binding in place using double thread with securing the ends at the seams for durability. I then took a safety pin to thread the elastic through the casing.

Pinning one end of the elastic securely to one side seam, I tried the garment on and pulled the elastic to the exact fit I wanted, then sewed that end to the other side seam. This elastic tightened the waist perfectly without interrupting the look or feel of the garment.

Here you see the back before and after, barely a difference in look and all the difference in fit. Threading a tie rather than elastic on the inside could also work.

One hour of love, the garment is back in the wardrobe waiting for the next event for which it now can be worn.

PS. The narrow, white seam binding was sewn on originally to keep from stretching. Both seam binding of varying widths and elastic are staples for securing, fastening, adjusting, and ‘fixing’ hand knits. See HERE for more thoughts and examples and, of course I’m always interested in tips and tricks that work for you.

6 responses to “Simple fix of a hand knit”

  1. So smart, Holly – both the garment and the fix. You are my go-to advisor for refined construction technique.


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