Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Something About Knitting

As a souvenir to this time in my life I am knitting a candy cane striped scarf. It's only the second scarf I have ever knit. It's cute, but I'm not convinced that it's entirely right.

I'm following the method for making stripes in the infamous knitting handbook "Stitch 'n Bitch". It basically states that to start a new color, or stripe, you cut the old color with about six inches to spare, hold the new color with this piece at about the same length, then just start knitting with the new color at the beginning of the row. With these six inch pieces that are hanging from the side of your scarf, you tie a loose square knot and then later, untie and weave it in.

It looks horrible. I have a bunch tassels hanging off one side of the scarf. I have yet to try weaving them in, but something just doesn't quite feel right. In the future I may try knitting one color, then weaving the stripes in over the knit piece. That might make for some nice texture.

On another knit note, I finally bought myself a knitting basket which I love. Time to start collecting yarn!

Jan 13, 2009. KNIT NOTE!
I visited my grandmother this weekend, a lady with over 50 years of knitting experience! I showed her my scarf and asked if I was doing anything wrong. She assured me that it was exactly how it should be, and even showed me a couple of other methods which may have even been more difficult.

She showed me how to weave in my leftover ends where the new colors begin and end, and even gave me a needle to do it with. The needle is thick and has a rounded point and a large eye to thread yarn through. To weave my ends through, first I'll untie any small knots I've made to keep them in. Thread the piece of yarn through the knitted stitches (of the same color) at least a third of the scarf's width or more. The most important thing at this point is to grasp your scarf width wise (not length wise) and give it a good pull, or stretch. This will allow the yarn to settle deeply into the knit and not be easily pulled out later by simple daily stretching of your scarf. Once you've done this, you can snip off the end of the now hidden yarn.