My other project this week was to start revisions on the Basics Course. The last time I revised it was before I started this blog. I am putting in links to entries on specific topics in the reference materials which will make it easier for my students. I am shooting for April 1st as the day it is ready. If you have ever taken the course, I will be happy to email you the new materials. Just send me your name so I can check my records and I will ship it off. The contents will remain the same.
TIP OF THE WEEK
As I revised the course, I realized that I have never done a video on the long tail cast on which I require for the swatches. (This cast on is also required for the Masters Program.) There are many types of cast ons but this is probably the most commonly used one. I want to make sure that my students know how to do this cast on even if they never use it again. It is the default cast on for more patterns. The key advantage is that is provides an firm but elastic base for the knitting. Here is the video: Long tail cast on
An important thing to know about this cast on is that it provides the first row of stitches as you work it. When you are following a pattern, it can be important to know that. Depending on the pattern, you may have already worked Row 1 when you cast on. The other important thing to know about this cast on is that one side is smooth and the other side is bumpy.
If you like the smooth side on the RS of the work, the first row you work should be worked as a WS row. The next two photographs show this approach.
The other approach is to work the first row after the cast on as a RS row. This will place the bumpy side of the cast on on the RS. The next two photographs show this approach.
Is there a right way or wrong way to this decision. No. It is a matter of personal preference. I must say that the majority of my Basics students prefer the smooth side for the RS. The important things is that the knitter is consistent. If you use the smooth side for one sleeve or for the front, make sure you do the same for the other sleeve or back.
There are may different cast on techniques and next week I will show a variant of the long tail that produces purl bumps on the RS as you cast on. This is useful for ribbing where you may want the smooth side for the knit stitches and the bumpy stitches for the purls.
Salon will be on Sunday from 2-4pm. Saturday the Met is doing Werther.
I finished my socks before the Blue Sky yarn arrived. They look green in this photo but the yarn is quite turquoise.
I took apart the pink socks I had started for Cynthia and used the Bow pattern for me. I had to put them aside due to my resolution. It is very unlike me to have partially completed projects around.
I selected Blue Sky Alpaca (sports weight) for a hat and mitten set. The stitch pattern for the fall issue is slip stitch patterns. When I was researching slip stitch patterns for Level 3 of the Masters Program I fell in love with a pattern I found in an old Mon Tricot stitch dictionary. I didn't use it for Level 3 as it is a MINDLESS EASY pattern and I probably wanted to show off a bit. This is the first time I've used it in a design. The hat will have a wide band with buttons. The cuffs on the mittens will be longer and both will have buttons. As I wrote up the proposal, I thought showing two colorways would be fun....one subtle and the other not so subtle. Since the pattern is Fleur de Lis, I selected a variant of Mardi Gras colors. I've finished the bands and cuffs for the subtle colors and am starting on the other now.