It was the best of needles, it was the worst of needles.
We are now on the sleeve knitting portion of our programme.
I picked up the stitches for the sleeve using a 60cm (24″) needle — the armhole was large enough to comfortably accomodate the 60cm needle and I used that to knit the first couple of inches. After that, the sleeve decreases necessitated me switching to a 40cm (16″) needle. Which is where I am now.
At some point, this needle will be too long to use. I will then switch to my trusty little 30cm (12″) Addi Turbo. The 60cm and 40cm needles are ebony, and the 30cm needle is metal, but that’s all I’ve got — my alternative is to knit on dpns, and I prefer to do fair isle on a circular. This is my standard operating procedure for fair isles — the change in needle makes no perceptible change in my knitting.
I tried doing a sleeve on two circulars once and loathed it. For me, it really interrupts the continuity and flow of my knitting. I have not tried the magic loop technique and don’t plan to, because I’m happy with the way I do it now. I firmly maintain that magic looping one’s circulars is hard on the needles anyhow and will weaken the join more quickly.
Just my opinion.
Now, about those ends . . .
I have no steek in which to abandon the ends, so I can’t just leave them flapping in the breeze. I used to weave them in. But for the past few years, I’ve tied ends together in a square knot and trimmed them. This works great for me — they stay put nicely and don’t get in the way.
On to some questions . . .
Laura the Yarn Thrower asked:
If you are picking up the sleeves from the armhole edge, won’t the little “v” parts of the stitches be upside down as compared to those on the front? Generally this would not matter, but in Fair Isle color work, in which the “v” really is distinct and isolated, is that a concern?
Yes, the stitches are upside-down. Does it matter? Not to me. Your mileage may vary.
What?! You’re knitting the sleeves down from the steek? Don’t you usually knit the sleeves separately?
For traditional Fair Isles the sleeves are knitted from stitches picked up from the armhole down to the cuff. For Dale of Norway sweaters the sleeves are knitted separately and sewn in.
I was wondering what happens to all of the yarn ends when you trim them. I would expect to still see some little ends, but your edge looked so smooth, I couldn’t see any remnants of them. Could you explain how far down you trim them and then what you do with them when you are picking up your stitches?
See? That’s the beauty of shetland wool. Hairy and sticky. I trimmed the ends to the edge of the steek, and it makes a nice uniform edge. I didn’t do anything with them when picking up the stitches. As you pick up stitches, the steek just obediently folds itself down to the inside of your work.
Rain, Rain, Go Away
We got even more rain last night, and there is more coming down now — 1-2 inches more predicted. Fun! Up to this point, the Washington DC metropolitan area has gotten 10.27 inches of rain since last Thursday.
The thought of it makes Lucy nuts.