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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Do what I mean, not what I tell you

We've all heard the saying, "Do what I mean, not what I tell you." Apparently this also applies to knitting patterns. And boy did I find this out the hard way. Yes, I am talking about none other than that vest I am making for my Mom.

The vest instructions said to bind off all three pieces (back, right front, and left front) and that is exactly what I did. Then I did a gawd awful job of seaming the shoulders.

However I have since discovered from more seasoned knitters that I should have seam using kitchener, 3-needle bind off, or mattress stitch. Every example of the kitchener and 3-needle bind off shows it worked with both pieces still on needles, so this would mean I should not have bound off any of the vest pieces (as per pattern instructions) before doing either of these. And the examples of mattress stitch I have seen show seaming up the side of the knitting, and I couldn't figure out how to apply the mattress stitch to seaming the shoulders where you are working across the knitting. Then I stumbled upon this site showing how to knit stitch seam, which looks like the thing to do if both pieces have already been bound off and you're seaming across the knitting. However I still don't really grasp this technique and wish I could find better (more close up) step-by-step photos.

Oh well, it is too late to redo the shoulder seams since I have already knit the band around the arm hole. And I am NOT undoing that.

I'm still working on the band that goes around the front, from the bottom right section, up to and around the neck, then down the left to the bottom. That's 238 stitches to be picked up. I also have to figure out how to evenly space 5 button holes across a 58-stitch section.

If I ever finish this vest and if I ever decide to knit another shaped garment, I will probably try to find a pattern that does not require any seaming. Is there such a thing?

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I'm a bit frustrated with the disorganization of my yarn stash at the moment. I know I have a bag of Highland Wool in the Ruby red color (same color as these mitts). And although my Ravelry Stash is not quite up to date, I did take a lookie and it shows I had 14 balls with a few used for some projects. So I'm not smoking crack. I should have a good bulk of this yarn somewhere in the house. So where is it? I've looked in my Yarnmoire and all the plastic bins where I store overflow yarn. I went through these places three times over the past 2 days. Nothing. That bag of Highland Wool yarn is in hiding the way some of Miss M's toys do.

I was so intent on finding this a couple of days ago. Now I can't even remember why I was lokoing for it. Perhaps it'll come back to me when it's not past midnight and I am more awake.

.

5 stitch(es):

hakucho said...

I hate seaming knitted items! Yes, you can make garments without seaming. The sweater I made for Kate is one. I totally loved the way that worked up with only tiny seams under the arm which I did a 3 needle bind off. I had swore I would never make another sweater, but after this great project I am contemplating knitting a sweater for my husband now. I think if I find the right pattern I may just do it. I think he'd like a handmade sweater that fits :)

MicheleLB said...

Three needle bind off rocks! Although sometimes it's not the best choice for a heavy garment; seamed shoulders add more stability. Especially to a drop shoulder garment. But in my quest to not sew shoulder seams, I have been known to use three needle bind off, and then slip stitch crochet across the bind off to tighten things up. ;-)

For another vest, three needle bind off shoud be fine.

Onward! (looking forward to pix of the vest)

Darcy knotty Knitter said...

I have yarn everywhere so not organized.lol I love all the links very helpful and as always your patterns are amazing:)Hugs Darcy

Lisa W. said...

you are doing you're first seamed/shaped etc. garment..puhleeze give yourself some amazing credit for perseverence and all. And, of course you are not going to undo the arm binding! And i too absolutely hate the pick up evenly around to make sure it's lying flat and doesn't flair out and incorporate the buttonholes...it's not mindless knitting. but it's incredibly satisfying when finished! and lookie at all the cool things you learned to do and do differently next time! It's going to be wonderful and your mom will love it ever so much when you are done! Can't wait to see the finished product!

Rachel said...

Thankfully I don't know where you live, so I can honestly say I am innocent of raiding your stash.

I really like the "Something Red" pattern by Wendy Bernard. So far, it's looked great on every different body type I've tried it on, and there's absolutely NO seaming anywhere. Just knit, knit, knit. It's very forgiving in the shaping department, too. Great pattern, but be careful of the row gauge, if you knit it, since that can affect the sizing.

Hope you find your yarn! Try NOT looking for it, and then you'll find it.