A question of fit

I am struggling with a fit question on the Paid in Full tank.  I have finished about 8 inches of this tank, which is knit in-the-round and bottom-up.  I did almost all of this while on my trip to Malaysia, during which I was too lazy to transfer the stitches to a super long needle and try it on.  In fact, because I was knitting it on a 24″ needle, I kept thinking it was on the small size, but was content with the fact that the lace would make it very stretchy.  I have now taken the opportunity to try it on, and to be honest, I am fretting about the fit.  I think it’s too big.

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It feels really loose.  I don’t think it looks terrible in the above photo, but I have already put in all of the waist shaping and there is still too much fabric around the waist.  Here is a different view:

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If you look at the pattern photos, the tank is not skin tight and does have some ease, particularly on the back view.  I really like the way this looks on Deb, where it clearly has a bit of ease but not too much.  (This is the tank as worn by Deb Hoss, the designer. She looks good in everything.)

© Deb Hoss

When I compare mine to Deb’s, I think mine looks a little bit big, but it feels VERY VERY BIG!  It is super stretchy, as you can see here:

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Below is a photo taken with a measuring tape.  For zero ease, I would need 42″ across the bust.  I am getting about 36″ on the un-stretched piece laid flat, measured just after the first set of waist decreases.  So, this piece shouldn’t be too far off.  Even allowing for a lot of stretch in the lace, it SHOULD fit.

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When I cast on, I had to choose between a size 38.5 or a 44.  The 38.5 would give me 3.5″ of negative ease, while the 44 would give 2″ of positive ease.  I went for the 44 and I think that was a bad choice.  However, 3.5″ seemed like a lot of negative ease.  I didn’t want to end up with something that was tight and thus didn’t get worn.

There is a moral here: when knitting in the round, try it on!  Try it on before you knit 8 inches!  Laziness is a terrible excuse!  Even if you are sitting on a fabulous beach on an island in the South China Sea while knitting it! (Note that the moral of the story should always be accompanied by exclamation points; the more the better.)

I now have a dilemma.  I can’t decide what to do, and so I am in limbo at the moment.  Here are my choices:

  1. Pretend everything is good and carry on.
  2. Rip out a couple of inches and add in more waist shaping.  I have 5 sets (20 stitches decreased), and I could possible make 8 sets (32 stitches decreased).
  3. Brace myself, rip the whole thing out, and start over.

Note that my options don’t include “Throw it in a basket and forget about it till next year.”  That is because I love this pattern and I love the yarn.  I want to have this tank in my wardrobe.  Help me, dear readers!  What to do?  I need some advice.