Over the past few year I have made several different bikini tops, and I think I’m getting close to my perfect formula when it comes to the most popular model that starts with a chain, working double crochet stitches on both sides of the chain in semi-circles with increases along the middle line.
Making a perfect cup will depend on several factors:
- Yarn you are using, hook size and tension
- Length of the starting chain
- How you increase
- How many rows you work
- What type of straps you are using
Nirvana Crochet gives a very useful starting point in her video here with detailed measurements that can help you get started. I think these will work well for young perky bosoms, but they – or other ready-mad guidelines didn’t seem to work for my middle-aged post-kids body. After getting a little bit into sewing and watching quite a few videos on making bras, I have realized that I need to take my personal measurements and tailor my crochet cup formula to that.
Yarn and hooks
My preferred bikini yarn by far is Diva Stretch from Alize. It’s fine weight, stretchy and dries up reasonably quickly. I’m using 1.5 mm hook to obtain soft yet sturdy fabric.
Length of starting chain and width of the cup
For me, the ideal starting chain length (as measured in finished cup – so you need to swatch!) is equal to the bottom cup depth (as describes here, for example) and the width at bottom of the cup equals the width of my breast at its base.
You will probably need to experiment a few times. I also found it useful making to different cups and comparing them on myself in one bikini
How you increase
I prefer a 2dc-1ch-2dc increase
All of my previous bikinis had crochet straps and I’ve always found them itchy. This time, I’m trying out lycra spaghettis. This saves a lot of crochet time, too.
So here is how I made my bikini, I usually wear 85B bra size:
Row 1: Dc in 4th ch from the hook, continue working in dc until the last chain. In the last chain, work 3 dc,1ch, 3 dc. Turn your work, and continue with 1 dc in the back loop of very chain until you reach the beginning of the chain.
Rows 2-16: Turn, ch 3, dc in the next dc until you reach the chain space, 2 dc -1 ch- 2 dc in the chain space; dc in each dc until the end on the row
Edging: after finishing the 16th row, ch3, turn your work 90° clockwise and work across the bottom of the cup as follows: 1dc in the 1st space, (ch2, skip 1 row, 2 dc in the space created by the 1st stitch of the next row).
When you reach the end of this side, ch 1, turn your work 90° clockwise, 2sc in the side of the last dc you, 5 dc in the 1st dc of the row below, (sk2, sc in the next stitch, sk 2, 5 dc in the next stitch) – repeat until you reach the top angle, ch 2, skip the next 2dcs+ch+2 dc and work 5 dc in the next stitch, (sk2, sc in the next stitch, sk 2, 5 dc in the next stitch) – repeat until you reach the bottom, 3 sc in the corner, (5dc between the next two dc, sc between the next two dc) across, finish with 1 sc and slip stitch.
Make another cup just the same, weave in the ends. Add the straps and you are done!
This video should help you with the process, but do not hesitate to comment if you have any questions