Friday, February 8, 2019

Figure 8 Again

I've finally recovered from getting the Spring 2019 issue of Cast On out.  Today is the deadline for submissions for Summer.  It never ends!  After I make this post that is what I will be doing.

I took this video of George when he discovered the roving I'm using for the booties (see below).  I hope my friends don't mind a bit of cat spit.  I posted a longer version on Instagram.  He really is a sweetie.

Students News
Now that the holidays are over, I'm getting more and more lessons.  Keep up the great work.  The postal rates changed on January 27th.  Since I use Stamps.com, I actually prefer the way the new First Class postage is calculated.  Just a reminder for non-US students, please photograph your swatches, front and back, before you send them to me.  I keep them until the course is complete to keep the cost the same.

Tip of the Week
I've reviewed several finishing lessons and the same question has come up.  The Figure 8 method for beginning a seam causes all sort of problems.  I've done several entries on it before but I realized I need to focus more on exactly where to begin.  My method might be a little different but I've found it works quite well and it avoids the issue of rows not lining up.

You begin a Figure 8 in the cast on edge.  For my course and Masters work, you are required to use the long-tail cast on for these swatches which produces a smooth side of the cast on and a bumpy side.  It is completely up to the knitter to decide which side is the RS.  I almost always use the smooth side so that is what my demonstrations swatches have shown in the past but many of my students prefer the bumpy so I've done two sets of swatches. 

The long-tail cast on produces the first row of stitches and there are two strands of yarn below the stitch.  I use both of these strands in my seams and I start the Figure 8 in the lowest strand.  I do this as, in the past and I'm in a hurry, I have lined up the second strand on one side and the strand from the first row.  If you do this, the seam is slightly off and the rows don't line up.  If you take the time to use both of the strands in the seam, it happens less.  I see this all the time in my students' work.

The photos below show the Figure 8 on the smooth side and on the bumpy.  This video shows the technique.








Here are photos of the completed seams. 






I'll do another video soon on how to finish off the seam at the bind off edge.

Knitting Salon
Salon will be on Sunday from 2-4pm.

Current Projects
Here is the reason I didn't get any knitting done before Christmas...I don't know what I was thinking.  My New Years Resolution several years ago was to write patterns IMMEDIATELY after I finished something.  Well, I was so afraid I wouldn't make the photo shoot date, I held off on writing the patterns.  That was a very unpleasant experience I hope NEVER to repeat.





Now that all of that is done, I'm trying to get out the presents before I start working on the summer issue.  Everyone except my nephew is getting thrummed booties AND I am using yarn that has been in my stash for at least 10 years.  (That is this year's resolution, to make a dent in my stash for personal projects. Of course, that doesn't mean I won't be buying more yarn!)  

Here are Martha's booties.  (They were accompanied by a bourbon tasting.)



Here are Nora, Stephanie and Christian's presents.  I used Carolyn Vance's pattern for the Swedish Block Scarf from the last issue of Cast On for Christian's scarf. 


I'm hoping to finish up the rest this week....