Beads and pairs of stitches

I was having a conversation with a knitter in my Ravelry group about the difficulty of figuring out where to place beads symmetrically when all the stitches come in pairs. That is, there’s a lot of pairs of knit stitches, or a lot of double yarnovers. That conversation led to some experimentation on my part based on her ideas, my thoughts about them, and on my knitting reference books.

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Étude no. 22: Tunnel Eyelet

Three Tunnel eyelet variations

Periodically I like to try out techniques I haven’t used before and experiment with them. When I write about this, I call the posts my études, because they’re somewhat like the exercises musicians do for practicing.

I was browsing through my copy of Barbara Walker’s Second Treasury when my eye lit upon the Tunnel Eyelet stitch. I hadn’t really noticed it before, and when I read the instructions I was a little confused about how it worked. With many knitting instructions, I understand them better if I try them, so I did just that.

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1/1 Cable Crosses

I use 1/1 cable crosses fairly frequently in my lace design. Sometimes they help me continue a decrease line where there isn't a corresponding increase. Other times they make a nice closure at the top or bottom of a motif. In any case, here's a brief guide about how I work them without a cable needle. I'm pretty sure the 1/1 right cross method is pretty standard (I think I learned it from Barbara Walker's books); I don't know about the 1/1 left cross.

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Tinking a centered double decrease

If you haven’t heard the term, tinking is the process of undoing knitting, stitch by stitch (tink is knit spelled backwards). While I like the effect of various double decreases, I have to admit that they can be kind of a pain to tink, because of the way that the stitches are out of order. I recently noticed a trick for tinking my CDDs, and so I thought I’d share it just in case it’s useful.

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Swatch blocking experiment

You might have noticed that I knit a lot of swatches. I’ve been getting fussier about how carefully I block them, and have been getting more consistent about using a short blocking wire (or skinny metal knitting needle) along each edge. Recently I’ve been pondering my swatch selvedges, and thinking about how to make it easier to thread the blocking wire through them. I remembered coming across a selvedge that uses yarnovers at the very edge, and decided to try that, at least for swatches.

It does make for easier blocking; I’m not yet convinced I like the look of it, though that doesn’t matter so much for swatches. I might try the yarnovers on every other or every third row instead.
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Using a stitch pattern: converting from flat to round and vice versa

Using a stitch pattern: turning a flat pattern into a round one.

This is the third and final part of my very basic series about how to use a stitch pattern. Here are the first two:

  1. The parts of a stitch pattern.
  2. Using gauge to figure out how many stitches to cast on.

Stitches in stitch dictionaries are usually written to be worked flat, but they can usually be converted to be worked in the round. This post discusses how. Occasionally, you’ll find a stitch pattern written to be worked in the round; the instructions here will work for those, too.

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A different way to combine knitting and crochet

Several years ago, I was playing around with combining knitting and crochet, and I hit upon a way of doing so that made me really happy. I was going to write more about it “later”, but then my wrist stopped allowing me to do crochet, and “later” never came. (No, really, I tried a bunch of things. Please don’t offer me advice.)

Anyway, I recently came across some old swatch photos I took with a cell phone, and thought I’d write about it in hopes that it would spark someone’s interest. I’d love it if someone else were to play around with this!

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Disappearing loop as a flat knitting cast-on for shawls

Disappearing loop as a flat knitting cast-on for shawls

I wrote recently about a start for a top-down triangular shawl I’d come up with, but there’s another that I’ve used in several shawl designs (most of them not yet published): modified disappearing loop. You can see it in use in Sycamore Creek.

Disappearing loop is generally used as the center of a shawl or something else to be worked in the round from the center outward. However, there’s no reason it can’t be used in cases where you need to cast on a small number of stitches for a shawl to be worked flat.

Here’s how.

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