Friday, September 18, 2015

Fixing a Dropped Yarnover

I got an email with a photo from Elf at Redfish.  They are in Texas for Stitches.  Here is a picture of their booth.  If you are in Texas and plan to go, stop by and say hi from me!

I wish I could have gone.  They were at our conference in San Diego and I bought yarn for my latest project (more about that later) and I left my season sweaters with them to take to the show. 

I was out of town last week and I was surprised that more lessons had not arrived.  Generally the fall is quite busy.  I did get several requests from students who had signed up over a year ago wanting to know if they could continue.  Again, I do not enforce any time limits.  Just send me an email to see if the materials have changed.

I am back to topics on how to fix mistakes.  There are two "lace" swatches in my Basics class.  Frequently students have difficulty with these swatches and the problem is always due to the yarnovers.  If you miss a yarnover anywhere in the swatch, it will not turn out correctly.  I've noticed a couple of types of mistakes over the years.

One student contacted me to let me know that there was a problem with the swatch instructions, that there was not enough stitches.  It took me a while to figure out what she was doing.  She was interpreting the abbreviation of YO to mean "bring the yarn forward and then knit the stitch."  Of course she was running out of stitches.  (For the purposes of this discussion, I am making the assumption that all of the stitches on the RS are knit stitches.)  A yarnover means just that, bring the yarn forward and over the needle.  This places a strand of yarn between the stitches.  You then go to the next instruction. 

I've had students contact me to let me know that the instructions are wrong when they are working on perhaps the 4th or 5th row and the stitch count is no longer correct.  This is almost always due to a missing yarnover.  In lace for each decrease there needs to be a compensating yarnover or increase.  If you don't make the yarnover, you will reduce the stitch count.  For simple lace patterns, the stitch count remains the same for each row.  To avoid mistakes count your stitches every row.  It is a lot easier to fix a missing yarnover on the next row.  (The video shows how to fix this type of mistake.)

What happens if you don't catch it soon?  Well, you can fix it but keep in mind it might not look great since you are creating stitches out of nothing.  This photo shows three locations where yarnovers are missing.  The one on the top row is the easiest to fix.  You just pull up the horizontal strand between two stitches on the WS row. 

This photo shows a close up of one of the missing yarnovers.  To fix it, you have to create stitches out of the horizontal strands indicated by the arrows.  The problem is that they are hard to see.

In this photograph, I have pulled the stitches apart to show the horizontal bands more clearly.  Now you can fix this mistake the same way you would fix any dropped stitch.

Here is the fixed yarnover.  Notice that the yarnover at the top is now very small.  That is what happens when you stretch the fabric to accommodate the new stitches. 

Yes, you can fix a dropped yarnover but in some cases it is better to rip out the work to the mistake.  That is why I recommend using lifelines in lace.  (See the index for entries on that topic.)

Here is the video:  Fixing Dropped Yarnovers

Salon will be on Sunday, September 20th.

We had the selection meeting for the Spring issue on September 10th.  As usual, I am doing more than I planned.  The yarn for one project has already arrived.  I've made the gauge swatch and blocked it so I should be ready to go later today. 

I finished the cat scarf and sent it off to Martha who commented that it will be very kidding!  She lives in Utah so I am not worried.

Next up on the birthday front was Cara.  I used Lorna's Lace Pearl which is 51% Silk and 49% Bamboo.  I made a cowl for her.  The photos don't show how shiny and gold this fiber is.

This is wrapped around twice.  You could even wrap it three times.

I've started on my dress using the RedFish 3-ply.  It uses a raglan construction.  The bodice and the top portion of the sleeves are black but I am going to use gray gradients as the dress gets longer.  It will be natural at the hem.  Obviously I have a long way to go!


Friday, September 4, 2015

Picking Up Stitches for a Double Band

Last week we had the photo shoot for the Winter issue.  We have some beautiful sweaters.  I took videos.  I am the worst videographer ever.  Here is a sample:  August 27, 2015

I spent the week writing the article for the Fashion Framework, Finishing with Confidence and Correspondence Course News.  It feels great to have that all done.

I realized I hadn't posted photos of the cats for a while.  Here is my sweet little blind Petipa.  She is expecting a treat.

George is on his couch (typical male), plotting evil, no doubt.  He loves lounging on knitwear.  The orange is one of those ruffled scarves Harriet made for me.  George has claimed it as his own.

I received a few lesson the past two weeks.  I am expecting an uptick due to the number of emails I have been getting.  Fall is on its way!

I fully intended to continue on with tips about fixing mistakes but I selfishly got sidetracked.  The Fashion Framework for the Winter issue is about Collars and as I was writing the article, I realized I have never discussed double pick up bands in the blog.  This technique is ideal for collars which can be worn either up or down.  Think of this tip as a preview of the Finishing with Confidence article 

When you pick up stitches, there is a raw edge.  This technique encases the raw edge.  Here is a photo of the RS.

And here is the WS.

I don't use this technique all the time but it does add a certain something to special projects.  For example, if I am making a baby sweater, I take the time.  (Think sweater folded in a box.)  It is ideal for reversible garments.

This is my favorite thing to teach at conferences.  Once the students have the basic concept, they use it in a variety of ways.  To use this technique, you need two circular needles; one the size you use for the band, the other should be at least three sizes smaller.  Working the first row is a pain since you are dealing but once you have the first three stitches set up, it is easy.  Here is the video:  Picking Up Stitches for a Double Bands.

Salon will be on Saturday (September 5) from 1:30-3:20.  

I've had time to try and catch up on gift knitting before I start garments for the Spring issue.  These scarves are for Cynthia and Jordan.  I plan to get them in the mail today.  The pink one may look familiar.  I did knit one several weeks ago.  That scarf is gone.  I donated it to a charity auction.  Luckily I had enough yarn to knit it again.  

I really do like the Seafoam pattern.  I am exactly halfway through with a double knit scarf for Martha's birthday.  I made a version of this scarf several years ago.  I can't say I love double knitting but it does produce a fun fabric.

One more gift to go and I can start on the dress I want to knit.  The yarn arrived from RedFish several weeks ago and it is haunting me!