Shoulder shaping for 3-needle bind-off

Hello, I’m really struggling and I’m hoping for some help here. I posted same question on RAV about 2 weeks as well went to my LYS and their suggestion was to do the stair-step bind-off and then come back and pick those stitches up to do the 3-needle bind-off. Why would I do that when the point of doing 3-needle bind off is to not have as bulky a seam.

From the beginning, I’m working on “Floyd” vest pattern by Martin Storey that I converted into the round. I am now at the back for shoulder shaping and the first instruction is to cast off 7 sts and K until there are 24 stitches on right needle and turn, leaving rem sts on holder. Work each side of neck separately. Dec 1 st at neck edge next row, ending with RS facing for next row: 23 st. Then casting off another 7 sts, then another 7 at beg of foll alt row and at same time dec 1 st at neck edge for 3 rows. In a post on RAV someone suggested I do short-rows, and while I know how to do those, in total I have 21 sts to cast off for the shoulder, what I don’t understand if I do short-rows, do I put those 21 sts on a holder while I’m doing the short rows and how do I handle the neck decs? Are the 21 sts the same sts I will eventually use for the 3-needle bind-off? I’m supposed to end up with 30 sts across the back neck. I’m at my wit’s end with this and ready to try and find someone to finish it for me. I’m hoping someone here can help me. Thanking you in advance.

Welcome to KnittingHelp!
I like the idea of the short rows also. On the first shaping row, don’t bind off the 7sts. Knit across until there are 31sts on the right needle, turn and dec 1 stitch at the neck edge. Work across the WS row until there are 7sts on the left needle, turn and do whatever kind of short row you prefer. Now work across the RS row to the neck, turn and repeat the dec at the neck edge, then work back to 7sts from the last turn. Repeat this sequence one more time and you’ll have 21 live sts remaining for the 3 needle bind off.

I’m still not getting this and feeling seriously stupid!

I knit across until there were 31 sts, I did the dec at the neck edge, turned and now I’m working on the 31sts, and I’m on the WS and I purled until there were 7 sts on the needle, then I did the short row and turned the work. Now I’m not RS, but am I supposed to knit all the way across until 7 sts remain, or 31 on that side? I don’t know where I’m supposed to do the next neck dec. Also, I’m supposed to end up with 30 sts across the neck area when all is said and done and I made a mistake the last cast off is 6, not 7, so I would have 20 sts remaining for the shoulders.

It’s a little strange to think about the short row shaping. Instead of binding off on the RS row, you’re going to purl across the WS row up to what would be the bound off sts. Instead of a bind off however you’re going to leave those sts on the needle and turn for a short row.

Aha, found a video. At about 3:30 minutes is the description you want but it’s worth watching the whole thing.

You have to remember the dec at the neck edge which isn’t in the video but if you put in a marker at the neck, that’ll help remind you.

I watched the video and that was very helpful for the short-rows, although I’m comfortable doing those.

I’ll keep plugging along…I decided to work on some scrap yarn first instead of the vest and then having to rip out.

That’s a great idea. Mark the side of the swatch that is the neck edge or the side that’s the arm edge so you can keep it straight. Come back if you need help.

Are the instructions you gave me for working just one side, as the original instructions are written that way and perhaps that’s why I’m having difficulty?

Yes, those instructions were for the first (left) shoulder (the second shoulder in the video).
Your post was correct:

“I knit across until there were 31 sts, I did the dec at the neck edge, turned and now I’m working on the 31sts, and I’m on the WS and I purled until there were 7 sts on the needle, then I did the short row and turned the work.”

So now you would be back on the RS. Knit to the neck edge, dec, purl the WS row to 7sts before the last turn (so you’ll now have 14 sts held out on the left needle), do a w&t or your favorite short row. You’re on the RS and you want to repeat the last 2 rows, decreasing at the neck and stopping 6sts before the end. When you get to 20sts on the needles, do one final row picking up wraps if necessary across these 20sts.