Friday, August 19, 2016

Double Decreases, Knit and Purl

It has been a rough couple of weeks.  It is a lot of work starting an organization from scratch.  Things are going very well and I think our members are going to be pleased with the new website.  I've been working on the Winter issue of Cast On and it hasn't been easy.  First of all, there are no funds to pay designers for their work.  I didn't even bother to send out a Call For Designs.  I am relying on the fabulous talents and goodwill of our committee members and others.  The magazine will be shorter than in the past but we will be in good shape for Spring.  We had some devastating new last week that our wonderful photographer, Kyle Baugh, died suddenly.  He was only 38 and leaves behind a wife and two daughters.  (His wife and oldest daughters are the models for the Fall issue which is at the printer now. )  Kyle had agreed to do the photography for the new TKGA so I am mourning doubly.  He will be missed. 

It must be getting close to fall!  I've been getting more lessons to review.  Keep them coming!

The tip this week is different ways to make double decreases on both the knit and purl sides.  The photograph below shows the three types.  (Ignore #4 for a minute)

#1 shows a central double decrease.  There are a variety of abbreviations for this--CDD, s2k1p or s2k1psso and probably more.  They all refer to the same technique.  You slip two stitches AS IF YOU ARE GOING TO KNIT THEM TOGETHER, you knit the next stitch and then pass the two stitches over the stitch you just knit.  A very common mistake is to slip the two stitches one at a time.  If you do this, you get #4.  The center stitch should be on top and slipping the two stitches together places the center stich in the correct location. 

#2 shows a different type double decrease.  This is generally abbreviated s1k2togpsso.  I am sure there are other ones as well.  Every designer seems to use a different one but they all refer to the same decrease.  To make this one, you slip one stitch, knit the next two stitches together and then pass the slipped stitch over the stitches you just knit together.  I've seen this decrease used a lot in lace when it is a floral design.  If you are not careful when making this decrease, it can look a bit sloppy.  Single slipped stitches tend to get stretched out so you should be careful with it when passing it over the other stitches.  Notice that the center stitch is underneath the stitches to the right and left.

#3 shows K3tog.  I've rarely seen this used in lace.  About the only place I've used it is in itty bitty bobbles.  When I did this swatch, I noticed that #4 mirrors this.  Good to know if you ever need to mirror a K3tog.

The vast majority of patterns call for decreases to be made on the RS of the work (in most projects the knit side) but in rare occasions you may need to know how to make a double decrease on the WS of the work (the purl side) and that decrease needs to look like the ones above.  Some patterns don't let you know how to do this. 

Making #1 on the purlside is a bit tricky.  I suggest you look at the video if you have any questions.  The first thing to do is to change the orientation of the first two stitches on the needle.  To do this, you slip them one at a time and then return them to the left needle.  This ensures that the decrease won't be twisted.  Next you need to change the orientation of this two stitches AGAIN.  To do this you slip the two stitches together as if you are going to purl them through the back and then return them to the left needle.  Please look at video to see exactly how to do this.  The final step is to purl the 3 stitches together. 

Making #2 on the purlside is not as difficult.  You basically reverse what you do on the RS.  Purl the two stitches together, return this stitch to the left needle and then pass over the stitch to the left. 

To make #3, just purl the three stitches together. 

Here is the video:  Double Decreases, Knit and Purl sides

Salon will be on Sunday, August 21, from 1:30-3:20. 

I've been working on a chevron shawl using some RedFish silk I bought years ago.  I'm going to do a multicolor chevron for the winter issue of Cast On using these colors.  Elff has put together some wonderful color packets.  I'll do it in 3-ply so I can use larger needles.  I'm using 2.25 for the blue one.  I'll have to put it aside soon.

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