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Filtering by Tag: technique

Adding Some Give to an i-Cord Bindoff

LBHandknits

Kalinka5.jpg

This year I have been experimenting with i-cord edgings on a few of my designs, and I would say that overall this is one of my favourite edge treatments. One thing to be careful of, however, is the potential for making the edge too tight - as the i-cord bindoff hasn't much natural give. This is particularly important when binding off necklines. For example, when binding off the neckline on the Kalinka pullover, if you use a standard i-cord bindoff you may not be able to get your head through the opening! So instead I suggest the following method for making an i-cord bindoff more stretchy:

This started out as an instagram video, so apologies for the low resolution. But I think it is still fairly clear?

The first part of the video shows the standard way of working an i-cord bind off. In the second part, notice that I pick up a bar between stitches and bind that off as if it were a stitch (twisting it first) instead of the next ‘real’ stitch.

I work a few of these, evenly spaced, throughout the i-cord bindoff round, and it stops the edge from being overly tight. 

For the Kalinka pullover specifically, I worked 10 extra stitches into the neckline bindoff in this manner. But the ideal number of stitches you'll need will depend on the yarn you use, on the pattern, on your tension while binding off, etc. - so you may need to experiment a tad.

Whether you try this with one of my patterns, or a different project, I hope it proves helpful in adding give to those notoriously tight i-cord edges. 

 

How to Move Stitches to Scrap Yarn Without a Tapestry Needle 

LBHandknits

A couple of days ago I was working on a sweater, sitting in a lovely lush grassy spot on top of a hill some miles from my house. And just as I got to the exciting part of separating the sleeves (it's a top-down sweater in the round), I managed to drop my tapestry needle. The needle was one of those aluminium ones, anodized a nice shade of green. So you probably see where this is going. Green needle, green grass… After a frustrated search I finally came to terms with the fact I would likely never see it again! Which is a shame, but at least I was still able to move the sleeve stitches onto scrap yarn, using my knitting needles. And in case this is not a method familiar to everyone, I thought it might be useful to share it.

To be clear, this is a slower and less efficient process than simply threading the scrap yarn through your live stitches with a tapestry needle. But in case you are stuck, here is how:

Start by arranging the scrap yarn in your hand as if you are going to knit with it, with the short end of the scrap yarn being where where the working yarn would normally flow from. Then Ktog as many stitches you can comfortably manage (the picture shows k3tog, but you can do K2tog, K5tog, whatever).

Now, with your working needle, pull at the the knitted stitch you have just created until the short end of the scrap yarn pops out. 

And - voilà! The stitches are now threaded onto the scrap yarn. 

Obviously, the more stitches you can Ktog at a time, the faster this will go. Just be careful not to take on so many as to drop stitches or make the process so awkward that it is actually slower than doing fewer at a time.

While not quite as efficient as simply threading the stitches onto scrap yarn, if you find yourself without a tapestry needle it's better than having to put your work aside just as you are getting to the exciting part!