Monday, December 23, 2013

Knit. Tink. Repeat.

You know "knit" but "tink"?  Spell tink backwards.  Knit.  Tink is used to mean "to un-knit", or, to undo the knitting.

Most sweaters are made by knitting the back, the front, the sleeves, then sewing them together.  This is a top-down raglan, meaning all the parts are knit at the same time, then separated at the underarm.  Thus, the neckline needs to be started with the desired size.  I was fairly pleased that I had to tink the neckline area only twice.

Things were going along swimmingly; i.e., no errors, until the contrast stitches on the body of the sweater.  I didn't want to make a sweater that was plain (stockinette stitch).  When I saw the sweater in the mag with garter stitch at the neckline and in the body, I knew that was what I wanted to do.

The beginning of the sweater (the neckline) of my sweater is worked flat, meaning a row is worked, then turned, then a row is worked, and turned, and so on.  The stockinette stitch is made with alternating a row of knit with a row of purl stitches.

Garter (the bumpy one) is made flat by knitting each row.

However, this is switched when working in the round.  After the neckline is made, the end of the row is joined to the beginning.  The work continues going round and round, and not turning the work.

Because the work is not turned, it always looks like the right side but actually every other round is the wrong side.  Thus, stockinette stitch is made by knitting every round.  Garter stitch (the bumpy one) is made by alternating knitting one round with purling one round.

I prefer the knit stitch over the purl stitch, but felt I could do alternate rounds of purl stitches to get the garter stitch pattern.

Sounds good, but, whoops, forgot to alternate rounds and just purled every round---for the full 3 inches!

You can see the difference in appearance of the band on the body versus the band at the neck.  How did I not notice this?  I guess I was paying more attention to the individual stitches, looking for stitch errors.

When I was through with the band is when I noticed it.  Oh, geez.  What I had succeeded in doing is making a reversible stockinette stitch (which is what stockinette stitch looks like on the wrong/back side of knitting).

There are three ways to tink stitches.  1) taking out the stitches one at a time.  This would be over 200 stitches for each round,  with approximately 22 rounds.  Ugh.  2) removing the needles and just pulling out the stitches.  This goes much more quickly but the results can be disastrous, with stitches coming undone where you don't want them to.  After that, the round of stitches must be put back on the needles, correctly. Ugh.  3) having a lifeline in place.

I had never used one but felt this was the time to use one.  Usually lifelines are used for lace patterns and are put in a round (or row) just after working it.  With this situation I had to put it in at the beginning of the 3" garter stitches.

A lifeline is just running a smaller yarn--or crochet thread--through the stitches so they won't come undone.

Lifeline, here I come------

By the way, my dressform does have two arms.  I was too lazy to snap on the other one.