Finishing sweater


I offer a finishing service for people who don’t want to sew up their garments. I have a problem with a customer’s sweater that I don’t quite know how to resolve. The lady has narrow shoulders and the fairisle sweat she has beautifully knitted is too wide across. She wants me to reduce the shoulder width by about two inches each side. I can’t figure out how to do this and not ruin her work! If I just turn the shoulder under as she suggested, the sleeve won’t fit and anyway it would be too bulky. Could I pleat the shoulders without spoiling the design? Help, good ideas and advice appreciated.


The best solution would be to live with a drop shoulder sweater if that’s possible. It won’t hurt to try gathering or pleating the shoulder. It may work if the gauge is fine enough.
The only alternative I can think of is to seam and then cut the excess off if this was knit with wool (not superwash). This is going to alter the fair isle pattern of course. There are lots of steek videos online that may help.


Thank you salmonmac, if it were mine I would just live with it but my customer wants it altered! I’ve experimented with pleating and gathering, both look pretty ugly! I can steek but hesitate to do it on complicated fairisle that’s not mine. I have come to some sort of resolution but am not happy with it so will take it to the customer tomorrow to see what she thinks. Why do I do this to myself?


It’s not a problem with an easy solution. I’d hesitate to steek too, especially with someone else’s knitting. Is turning the shoulder top under at all possible? Can you convince yourself that it looks like a shoulder pad?


Thanks for the suggestions salmonmac. I came to the same conclusion about turning the shoulder under but couldn’t make it work BUT I have put the sleeve further in at the top, rather than trying to turn the shoulder under and that looks slightly better. I’ll take it to customer for approval tomorrow before I go any further. The trouble is I am too much of a perfectionist and it bugs me if things aren’t right. Thanks again for taking the trouble to help .


Yikes! I’ve never been able to resolve my narrow shoulder problems. But I haven’t tried much. It’s too much work and I don’t want to spend all that time and money working so hard at it. Perhaps she also sews and has a paper pattern that fits her well and you could cut to that, taking into account what you and others have already said. Nancy Zieman has videos on adjusting sewing patterns (before cutting fabric). It’s funny that I want my own projects to fit better than store bought!


Thank you for your advice Beth. I have done the best I can with this sweater, I’m thoroughly fed up with it now so it is what it is and hopefully my customer will be happy, although I’m not, and she’ll never knit another one again for me to sew up :slight_smile: