Through the Grapevine Shorts – Knitting Pattern

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Once upon a time, I was a ballerina.

It feels like a million years ago, but I actually did take ballet classes for many years through childhood and teenage years, and even as an adult for a bit. As many other dancers, I felt in an out of it for many times, because of school, work, time. But I’ve always enjoyed and missed it.

This spring and summer have been completely different than we all imagined. Living always inside, and with not much to do or to go, my life was suddenly attracted again to ballet, through online classes i was able to take. Falling back into something I hadn’t done in many years but still was able to get into (although not quite as gracefully as before ha!) was such a great feeling in the middle of bad news. Specially since things looked so grim back in April, here in NYC…

And during the classes I was able to take, I slowly fell back into old ballet habits, including wanting to wear comfy shorts on top of my ballet clothes. But now with knitting superpowers, I started designing these shorts in my head.

You don’t need to be a ballerina to make and wear these. I realized through a lot of my testers, that knitted shorts aren’t as common or expected of a pattern, but once you see them you want them! And they are easier than you’d think to make. If you are looking to work out, lounge, or just make a new pair of comfy shorts pajamas, this pattern is for you. Let’s make some shorts!


The shorts are built top to bottom, in the round. This allows you to adjust quite easily for more highwaisted or longer legs, without much thought. I wanted these too be pretty short shorts, but since you are making them, you should decide exactly how long you want your shorts to be!

We start with a simple ribbing pattern. This should help keep the waist tight, but if you want even tighter waistband, you can make the ribbing longer, fold it inside and sew in some elastic!

Then you start working downwards in stockinette with some straight rows and increases. All while creating a sweet cable detail in both sides of the shorts. This not only gives it a special touch but it also make them more elastic. The shorts are built with negative increase (like most of my patterns) so that they are worn pretty tight to the body, considering that knitted garments stretch.

Note that the shorts include short rows (gasp!) to create a higher back, and keep the booty covered. The short rows are optional, but I very much recommend adding them! We then divide the legs and again, feel free to make them as long as you wish. Done! You’ve got yourself a pair or shorts.

As always, I tried to make my pattern as inclusive as possible. Here’s a chart with the nine sizes you can find in this pattern:

Size Waist inWaist cmHips inHips cm
1 (XS)23–2458.532-3483.75
2 (S)25–26½63.534-3689
3 (M)28–307137-3996.5
4 (L)32–3481.2540-43106.75
5 (XL)36–3891.544-47116.75
6 (2XL)40–42101.548-53132
7 (3XL)44–45111.7554-56137.25
8 (4XL)46–47116.7557-58142.25
9 (5XL)49–50124.560-62155


You will be using DK yarn, I used Caron simply soft, but feel free to choose any blend that works better for you. Cotton would make slightly stiffer but more breathable shorts. And you can never go wrong with Wool, specially for a pair of pajamas.

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Ready to start? Find the Pattern below

To pin this pattern for later click here

If you’d like help with your pattern, make sure to check out my step-by-step tutorial below. This tutorial covers only size S, so for other sizes be sure to follow the written instructions in the PDF

Want free patterns? Find more free knitting patterns here.

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Published by Magali

I'm a knitter, crocheter, maker, animator, wife. I live in a big messy city and making things has become a passion that brings me to explore it more, meet people who enjoy it too, and have something fun to do while I commute too! I love to share my designs and tutorials to make it easy for more people to join the craft(s).

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