Friday, November 15, 2013


I haven't put in an obligatory cat photo for quite some time.  Here is George enjoying the sun.  He is giving Petipa the evil eye after taking spot on the chair.

I spent the week catching up on things that should have been done months ago.  Luckily, I didn't get too many lessons to review.  I had a TON of emails, however.  I've expanded my duties at TKGA this past month and I had no idea how that would impact my in boxes!

We've decided to add a page to Cast On devoted to correspondence courses.  Those that complete courses will be listed on that page.  We are also going to have a page for the Masters Program.  These changes will be in the Summer issue.  It was a little too late to get them into the Spring issue.

I realized AFTER I had posted the tip last week that I had already done a tip on the topic.  Oh, well.  I guess it wouldn't hurt to check the topics BEFORE posting.  This week I am discussing zippers.  I don't require students to put in a zipper for the Professional Finishing Course but I do have it as an extra exercise if they want.  

The biggest problem with putting zippers in knitted garments is that knitted fabric is stretchy and zippers are not.  Another issue is that the teeth of the zipper can snag and tear the yarn.  Carefully consider the yarn, the stitch pattern and the resulting knitted fabric.  Will the weight of the fabric cause the fabric to sag on either side of the zipper? Is the yarn so fuzzy that it will get caught in the teeth?  Consider alternate forms of closures if the zipper will not enhance the design.  

It seems to be harder and harder to find full-service fabric stores which have much of a selection for zippers.  I now get zippers on line.  Zipper Stop has a huge selection of all types and colors of zippers.  You can even customize the length.  Some knit the garment first and others get the zipper and knit to its length.  It is pretty much up to you.  

As you knit the garment, you should consider the edge where the zipper will be placed.  A standard selvedge can be pretty ugly and a bit lumpy.  I generally slip the first stitch for the edges where the zipper will be placed. This creates a decorative edge and provides a seam line as well.  For the sample, I picked up and bound off a row of stitches in a different color to provide an edge.  The seam is placed in the center of each white stitch.

I do not use a sewing machine to put in the zipper, mainly as I am not a very good seamstress.  I find it easier to put the zipper in by hand.  In any case, the process is to baste the zipper in place first and then sew it in.  Be sure not to have the stitches that might interfere with the zipper teeth.  In the photograph above you can see that I line up the stitches next to the teeth.  

I used a back stitch to ensure that the zipper wouldn't slip as this photo shows.

Here is this week's video:  Zippers

Salon will be on Saturday from 1:30 to 3:20.  No opera this week.  UK does have a football game but it isn't in town.  If I have a request, I will turn the tv on to the game.

I have blocked the yellow socks but I am going to put off weaving in the yarn tails.  For each row of flowers there are four yarn tails.  I don't like carrying up the yarn.  It doesn't do the tension any favors.  The photograph doesn't do the yellow justice.  It is a beautiful buttercup.

I've started on birthday socks which I will finish up before starting holiday gifts.  Luckily, the new cycle of Cast On garments doesn't start until early December.  I am going to try and show some restraint in my proposals.  Jan choose this Madelinetosh yarn for her socks.  She is branching out from GRAY!  I had some  trouble finding a stitch pattern I liked.  The yarn is so dark it obscures any design.  (It photographs MUCH lighter...the name of the color is Ink.) I am calling them  Bow Tie socks.  Yes, I am sure it is an existing pattern I just haven't taken the time to research it.  The pattern I used originally (and knit half of the sock with) had the reverse stockinette beginning immediately after the cable.  I like this one much better.

Here is a close up of the stitch pattern.  

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