Techniques, WiP Posts

WiP and teaching 

I’ve got a pair of plain socks on my needles, now that I’m between design knitting for a few days!  These will have afterthought heels so that the stripes are maintained. The yarn is Felici from Knit Picks in the Time Traveler colorway.  This is the first that I’ve used this yarn, and I’m loving it!

I finished my socks for Cast On, just in the nick of time, too!  Next up is a lace shawl for the summer issue of Cast On, but I’m waiting on the yarn for that. I’m busy prepping for my upcoming classes, too! So I’m quite the busy bee lately. Thank goodness the boys are older and need less ‘teacher time’ from me nowadays!

Come see me at one of my upcoming teaching appearances:
Sign up for the Carolina Fiber Fest here! (I’m teaching A Sampling of Short Rows, and Finishing School).
(Oh, and if you’re taking my Finishing School class, here is a link to the homework!)
Sign up for the Unwind Retreat here!
Sign up for my Sweater Basics class at Baskets of Yarn here!

Until next time, Happy Knitting!!

Techniques

Video Tutorial: Two Row Bind Off

The two row bind off creates a firm, non-elastic bind off which looks good on stockinette fabric, but even better on 1×1 ribbing.  The BO edge ends up having eyelets which work perfectly for adding fringe to the edge of your knitting – on a scarf for example.

I filmed a quick video tutorial on this bind off, since I couldn’t easily find any videos out there for it!  It’s super easy to work.

Give this bind off a try sometime!

Happy Knitting!

Techniques

Toe Up Socks: Judy’s Magic Cast On

When knitting socks toe-up you need to be mindful of how you start and end your socks.  Your cast on needs to allow you to have a small circular stitch count – which you then increase to form your toe, and the bind off needs to be stretchy so that you can get your sock on over your heel!  I’m going to do a series of blog posts on these items and others, aimed at socks specifically, but that can come in handy in other knitting as well.

This post will concern the cast on.  One of my favorite cast ons for starting toe-up socks is Judy’s Magic Cast On. It is indeed magical!

Here is a video showing how to work this cast on:

Another great use for this cast on is as a provisional cast on.  If you work the bottom stitches over a second circular needle and then leave the needle in place – or replace it with waste yarn- you can then go back and knit from those stitches in the opposite direction with no visible line in the knitting.

I hope this has been helpful!

Happy Knitting!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Techniques

Socks: Afterthought Heels

Afterthought heels are heels that get knitted into a sock after the rest of the sock has been knitted. You can just knit a tube and then decide where to put the heel and cut out stitches and add a heel! I like doing what’s sometimes called ‘forethought’ heels. They’re afterthought heels, but you knit some waste yarn at the spot where the heel will be. Then when you’re done with the rest of the sock, you don’t need to cut any of your knitting in order to add your heel.

Here’s a video talking a bit about afterthought heels:

Afterthought heels are very much like knitting waste yarn for a thumb in mittens or gloves.  You have to know exactly where you want to place your heel when you use this method. Usually about 2 or 2.5 inches is allowed for the heel, so you would knit your toe-to-heel length to be about 2-2.5 inches short of your foot length.

Afterthought heels are great for self striping yarn,  and for ‘purse knitting’ projects, since you don’t have to fiddle with the heel while you are out and about – you can save the heel until you get home! 🙂

I hope this explains afterthought heels – you should give them a try – they’re fun!

Happy Knitting!

Techniques

Picot Cast Ons

Today I’m going to talk about a cast on technique – the Picot Cast On!  You may or may not have heard of this one, or maybe you’ve heard of it and haven’t done it before.  Or maybe you use it all the time – in which case I’ll bore you with this post. 😀  It’s one of those ‘specialty’ cast ons  that can be used in certain situations to really add that perfect finishing touch to a knitted item.

I’ve used it at the cast on edges of socks, that are knit cuff down of course , when I wanted a really pretty ‘frilly’ edge.  (Note: there is a corresponding bind off if you’re knitting them toe up – but that’s a topic for another blog post!)  I have a sock pattern coming out in the Spring that this cast on was perfect for, so I figured I’d do a quick blog post demonstrating the technique.

You’ll need to know how to do the ‘knitted cast on’ for this.  To do the knitted cast on, you make a slip knot, and then knit into it.  You then slip the stitch just made back onto the left needle.  That’s it – keep going for the required number of cast on stitches.  This is used in the Picot cast on, because for it you cast on a certain number of stitches and then bind off a certain number.

Here’s a video I made demonstrating:

 

You can do any number of cast on stitches and any number of bind off stitches.  Fewer cast on stitches before binding off will give you smaller picots, and more cast on stitches (and bind off stitches) will give you larger picots.  It all depends on your weight of yarn, and the desired look you are going for.

(Also, in the video I mention the fact that you get an odd number of stitches, but that may change based on your ratio of casted on stitches to bound off stitches.)

This edge has a good bit of stretch to it, and it looks very pretty on hems of baby sweaters, cuffs of lacy socks, and anywhere you want a pretty frilly edge (that has some stretch).

I hope this post was helpful – and that you’ll maybe try out a Picot Cast On sometime!

Happy Knitting!