Learn how to knit shorts

Learn how to knit shorts

Knitting is a versatile and creative craft that allows you to create your own unique pieces of clothing. If you’re looking to expand your knitting skills and add some essential summer garments to your wardrobe, learning how to knit shorts is a great project to take on.

Knitting shorts is a fun and rewarding project that can be customized to fit your body and style. Whether you prefer a loose and comfortable fit or a more tailored look, knitting your own shorts allows you to have full control over the design and fit.

In this step by step guide, we will walk you through the process of knitting shorts from start to finish. We’ll cover everything you need to know, from selecting the right yarn and needles to shaping and finishing your shorts. Along the way, we’ll provide helpful tips and techniques to ensure your project turns out beautifully.

If you’re a beginner knitter, don’t worry! This guide is designed for knitters of all skill levels. We’ll start with easy patterns that will help you build your confidence and gradually progress to more complex designs as you gain experience. So grab your knitting needles and get ready to create your own stylish and comfortable pair of shorts!

The Benefits of Knitting Shorts

Knitting shorts can be a fun and rewarding project that allows you to create unique and personalized clothing items. Here are some of the benefits of knitting shorts:

  • Creative Outlet: Knitting shorts provides a creative outlet for expressing your personal style and aesthetic. With various patterns, colors, and textures to choose from, you can customize your shorts to reflect your individuality.
  • Custom Fit: Unlike store-bought shorts, knitting allows you to create shorts that fit your body perfectly. By following the pattern and adjusting the measurements accordingly, you can ensure that your shorts are comfortable and flattering.
  • Portable Project: Knitting shorts is a portable project that can be done anywhere. Whether you’re traveling, waiting in line, or relaxing in a park, you can easily carry your knitting supplies and work on your shorts on the go.
  • Handmade with Love: Knitting shorts allows you to create a handmade item that is infused with love and care. Giving or wearing a pair of knitted shorts is a special way to show affection and appreciation for the recipient.
  • Eco-Friendly Choice: By knitting your own shorts, you can reduce your reliance on mass-produced clothing and contribute to a more sustainable fashion industry. Knitting allows you to use eco-friendly materials and reduce waste.
  • Relaxation and Mindfulness: Knitting is known for its relaxation and mindfulness benefits. The repetitive motions of knitting can help reduce stress, improve focus, and promote a sense of calmness and well-being.

Overall, knitting shorts offers a range of benefits, from creative expression and custom fit to eco-friendliness and relaxation. So why not pick up your knitting needles and start creating your own stylish and unique knitted shorts?

Materials Needed for Knitting Shorts

Knitting shorts requires a few essential materials to get started. Here is a list of items you will need:

  • Yarn: Choose a yarn that is suitable for summer weather and that has a breathable texture. Cotton or linen yarns work well for knitting shorts.
  • Knitting Needles: Select a pair of knitting needles that are the appropriate size for your chosen yarn. Check the yarn label for needle size recommendations.
  • Tape Measure: A tape measure is necessary to take measurements of your waist, hips, and desired shorts length.
  • Stitch Markers: Stitch markers will help you keep track of your stitches and pattern repeats.
  • Tapestry Needle: A tapestry needle is used for weaving in loose ends and sewing up seams.
  • Scissors: You will need a pair of scissors for cutting the yarn.
  • Pattern: Find a knitting pattern for shorts that you like and make sure to have it accessible while you work.
  • Optional: Depending on your chosen pattern, you may also need additional materials such as buttons, elastic, or a drawstring.

Make sure to gather all these materials before you start knitting your shorts. Having everything ready will make the knitting process smoother and more enjoyable.

Choosing the Right Pattern

When it comes to knitting shorts, choosing the right pattern is essential. It determines the design, fit, and style of the shorts you will create. Here are some factors to consider when selecting a pattern:

  • Skill Level: Take into account your knitting skills and experience. If you are a beginner, it is recommended to choose a pattern that is labeled as easy or beginner-friendly.
  • Size Range: Check if the pattern includes the size range you need. Different patterns have different size options, so make sure to select one that suits your measurements.
  • Style: Think about the style of shorts you want to knit. Do you prefer a classic design or something more modern and trendy? Look for patterns that match your personal style preferences.
  • Yarn Type: Consider the type of yarn the pattern suggests. The yarn weight and fiber content will affect the drape, feel, and durability of the finished shorts. Choose a pattern that specifies a yarn type that you enjoy working with.
  • Gauge: Pay attention to the gauge specified in the pattern. Matching the gauge is crucial for achieving the correct size and fit of the shorts. Make sure you are comfortable with the suggested needle size and yarn tension.
  • Pattern Format: Consider the format of the pattern. Some patterns come in written instructions, while others include charts or a combination of both. Choose a pattern format that you find easy to follow.

It’s always a good idea to read reviews or check for project photos from other knitters who have used the pattern. This can give you a better understanding of how the finished shorts will turn out and any potential challenges you may face. By considering these factors, you can choose the right pattern for your knitting project and create a beautiful pair of knitted shorts.

Step-by-Step Guide to Knitting Shorts

Knitting shorts is a fun and rewarding project that allows you to create your own unique and stylish wardrobe piece. Whether you’re a knitting beginner or an experienced knitter, this step-by-step guide will help you create a pair of shorts that you’ll love to wear.

Materials You’ll Need:

  • Knitting needles (size may vary depending on the pattern)
  • Yarn (choose a yarn that is suitable for creating shorts, such as cotton or linen)
  • Scissors
  • Tape measure
  • Stitch markers
  • Darning needle

Step 1: Choose a Pattern

Start by choosing a knitting pattern for shorts. There are many free and paid patterns available online that cater to different skill levels. Look for a pattern that includes clear instructions and measurements.

Step 2: Swatch and Gauge

Before you start knitting the shorts, it’s important to swatch and determine your gauge. Knitting gauge refers to the number of stitches and rows per inch. This step ensures that your finished shorts will fit properly. Follow the pattern instructions to create a swatch and measure your gauge.

Step 3: Cast On

Once you have determined your gauge, it’s time to cast on. The pattern will specify the number of stitches to cast on. Use the appropriate size of knitting needles to achieve the correct gauge. Cast on the required number of stitches using your preferred method.

Step 4: Knit the Body

Knit the body of the shorts according to the pattern instructions. This typically involves working in a combination of knit and purl stitches to create the desired texture or pattern. Follow the measurements provided in the pattern to shape the shorts as you knit.

Step 5: Shape the Waist

Once you’ve reached the desired length for the body of the shorts, it’s time to shape the waist. This may involve decreasing or increasing stitches to achieve the proper fit. Follow the pattern instructions for shaping the waist and create any necessary stitch counts.

Step 6: Knit the Waistband

After shaping the waist, you can knit the waistband. This can be done in a ribbing pattern or a different stitch pattern to create a nice finish. Follow the pattern instructions to knit the waistband to the desired length.

Step 7: Finishing Touches

Once the knitting is complete, it’s time to add any finishing touches. This may include sewing in loose ends, blocking the shorts to ensure proper shape, or adding any desired embellishments. Follow the pattern instructions for any finishing steps.

Step 8: Try on and Adjust

After completing your knitted shorts, try them on to ensure the fit is to your liking. If necessary, make any adjustments by adding or removing stitches in the waistband or body. This step will help ensure that your finished shorts are comfortable and fit well.

Now that you have finished knitting your own pair of shorts, you can enjoy wearing your unique and stylish creation. Feel free to experiment with different patterns, colors, and yarn types to create shorts that suit your personal style. Happy knitting!

Tips and Tricks for Knitting Shorts

  • Choose the right yarn: When knitting shorts, it’s important to choose a yarn that is appropriate for the season. For summer shorts, consider using a lightweight and breathable cotton or linen yarn. For cooler weather shorts, opt for a warmer and cozy yarn like wool or acrylic.
  • Gauge swatch: Always start with a gauge swatch before knitting your shorts. This will ensure that your finished project will fit correctly. Follow the pattern’s instructions for the recommended gauge and adjust your needle size if needed.
  • Measurements: Take accurate measurements of the wearer’s hips, waist, and inseam to determine the right size to knit. Compare these measurements to the pattern’s sizing chart to select the appropriate size.
  • Construction: Pay attention to the construction method of the shorts. Some patterns may require you to knit the shorts in separate pieces and seam them together, while others may be worked seamlessly in the round. Understand the construction method before you begin knitting.
  • Proper shaping: To achieve a good fit, make sure to follow the shaping instructions in the pattern carefully. This includes increasing and decreasing stitches at the designated points to create the desired shape.
  • Finishing details: Don’t overlook the finishing details such as adding an elastic waistband or drawstring tie. These details can greatly enhance the overall look and functionality of the shorts.
  • Blocking: After completing your knitting, block the shorts to help shape and even out the stitches. Follow the yarn’s care instructions for blocking or lightly steam the finished garment.
  • Embellishments: Consider adding embellishments to personalize your knitted shorts. This could include adding decorative buttons, pockets, or embroidery to make them unique.
  • Try different patterns: Don’t be afraid to try different patterns and styles of knitted shorts. Experimenting with different designs can help you find the perfect pair that suits your style and body shape.
  • Practice and patience: Knitting shorts may require some intermediate knitting skills, so be patient with yourself as you learn and practice new techniques. With time and practice, you’ll be able to create beautiful and comfortable shorts.

Styling and Customizing Knitted Shorts

Knitted shorts offer endless opportunities for customization and personalization. Whether you want to add extra flair, adjust the fit, or experiment with different stitch patterns, there are several ways to style and customize your knitted shorts to make them unique.

1. Adding Embellishments

One way to customize your knitted shorts is by adding embellishments. Consider sewing on decorative buttons, beads, or sequins to give your shorts a glamorous touch. You can also experiment with embroidery or appliqué techniques to create intricate designs on your shorts.

2. Adjusting the Length

If you prefer shorter or longer shorts, you can easily adjust the length of your knitted shorts. Simply modify the pattern by adding or subtracting rows to achieve the desired length. Remember to keep track of your stitch count to maintain consistency throughout the project.

3. Trying Different Stitch Patterns

Another way to customize your knitted shorts is by experimenting with different stitch patterns. You can choose from a variety of textures, such as ribbing, lace, or cable stitches, to add visual interest to your shorts. Swatch different patterns to see which ones you like best before applying them to your project.

4. Adding Pockets

If you want to make your shorts more practical, consider adding pockets. You can easily knit and attach pockets to the front or back of your shorts. This not only adds a functional element but also gives your shorts a unique touch.

5. Playing with Color

Color can dramatically change the look and feel of your knitted shorts. Experiment with different color combinations to achieve the desired effect. You can use a single color for a classic look or mix and match different shades for a more eclectic style.

6. Using Contrasting Yarns

Adding contrasting yarns can create interesting visual effects in your knitted shorts. Use a contrasting color for cuffs, waistbands, or drawstrings to make them stand out. Alternatively, you can use two different yarns to create stripes or color blocks throughout your shorts.

7. Personalizing with Monograms

If you want to make your knitted shorts truly unique, consider adding monograms or initials. You can use duplicate stitch embroidery or intarsia techniques to incorporate your initials into the design. This personal touch adds a special detail that sets your shorts apart from others.

Remember, when styling and customizing your knitted shorts, always consider the overall design and fit. Make sure the modifications you make complement the shorts and enhance their appearance rather than detract from it. Happy knitting!

Additional Resources for Knitting Shorts

If you’re eager to learn more about knitting shorts, here are some additional resources that can help you improve your skills:

  • Knitting Magazines and Books – There are numerous knitting magazines and books available that provide step-by-step tutorials, patterns, and inspiration for knitting shorts. Some popular knitting magazines include Vogue Knitting, Interweave Knits, and Knitscene.
  • Online Knitting Communities – Joining online knitting communities can be a great way to connect with other knitters, exchange tips and ideas, and find support and encouragement. Websites like Ravelry, Knitting Paradise, and LoveKnitting have active forums and communities dedicated to knitting.
  • YouTube Tutorials – YouTube is a treasure trove of knitting tutorials, including ones specifically for knitting shorts. Search for tutorials from popular knitting channels like VeryPink Knits, KnitPurlHunter, and Sheep & Stitch.
  • Local Knitting Groups and Workshops – Check out local yarn stores, community centers, and libraries for knitting groups or workshops in your area. These gatherings often offer opportunities to learn new techniques and get hands-on assistance with your knitting projects. You can also meet fellow knitters and build a network of support.
  • Pattern Websites – Websites like Knitty, Ravelry, and LoveKnitting offer a wide range of knitting patterns, including patterns for shorts. You can search for patterns by specific criteria, such as difficulty level, yarn type, or garment type, to find the perfect shorts pattern for your skill level and taste.

By exploring these additional resources, you can expand your knitting knowledge and find inspiration to create beautiful shorts that you’ll be proud to wear.


What materials do I need to knit shorts?

To knit shorts, you will need knitting needles, yarn, a tape measure, stitch markers, a tapestry needle, and a pair of scissors.

Is knitting shorts difficult for beginners?

Knitting shorts can be a bit challenging for beginners, but with practice and patience, it is definitely achievable. Start with simple patterns and gradually increase the difficulty level as you gain more experience.

How long does it usually take to knit a pair of shorts?

The time it takes to knit a pair of shorts depends on various factors such as your knitting speed, the complexity of the pattern, and your experience level. On average, it can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks to complete a pair of shorts.

Can I use any type of yarn to knit shorts?

Yes, you can use any type of yarn to knit shorts. However, keep in mind that different yarns have different thicknesses and textures, which can affect the overall look and feel of your shorts. It’s best to choose a yarn that is suitable for the desired final result.

Are there any specific stitches I should know to knit shorts?

There are a few basic stitches that you should know to knit shorts, such as the knit stitch, purl stitch, and rib stitch. These stitches are commonly used in knitting patterns and will help you create a variety of textures and patterns in your shorts.

Can I customize the length and fit of the shorts I knit?

Yes, you can definitely customize the length and fit of the shorts you knit. Knitting allows for easy modifications, so you can adjust the length and width as per your preference. Just make sure to take accurate measurements and follow the pattern instructions for any modifications.

Where can I find knitting patterns for shorts?

There are many sources where you can find knitting patterns for shorts. You can check online knitting communities, knitting magazines, or even knitting books for a wide range of patterns. You can also find free patterns on various websites and blogs dedicated to knitting.


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