In this tutorial, I will show you how to transform a knitted cast-on to a provisional cast-on. I have called it “afterthought provisional cast-on”. It is a useful technique to transform an otherwise too tight neckline.
In Figure 1, the upper edge is the knitted cast-on edge. The blue line shows where you should pass through your needle. For this example, I am going to transform all except the outermost 2 stitches into provisional cast-on stitches.
Figure 2 shows how it looks after inserting the needle.
Then you cut though the cast-on edge between the stitches (do not cut between the first and last 2 stitches). The blue arrows in Figure 3 show where you should cut the yarn.
Figure 4 shows how it looks like.
Remove the cut yarn of the knitted cast-on edge (Figure 5) and unthread the remaining ends from the first and last 2 stitches. Figure 6 shows how it looks like from the RS and Figure 7 shows the WS.
Figure 8 and 9 show how it looks if you have to add a stockinette stitch neckband (shown in contrasting color) at this point. In this particular example, the first and last 2 stitches are picked up from the cast-on edge while the remaining stitches are worked across the afterthought provisional cast-on stitches.
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Have you ever bought a tiny fabric shaver likes the one below and thrown it in the trash bin as it didn’t work?
They usually don’t come with any manual but they really should. When you use a fabric shaver next time, hold it vertically as shown in the photo and it will work wonder! Try it next time 😉
The photo above is for illustration purpose, you can use any model, really.
My favorite buttonhole is a simple twisted yarn over. But when I need a bigger one, a one-row buttonhole is my preferred technique. Below is an excerpt from my pattern Minimissimi Sweater Coat.
Step 1: Work to the buttonhole position, slip 1 stitch knitwise, bring the yarn to the front and drop it (upper left). *Slip 1 stitch knitwise (upper middle), pass the previously slipped stitch over the just slipped stitch. One stitch bound off. Repeat from * to bind off the required number of buttonhole stitches (upper right).
Step 2: Return the last stitch to the left needle. Turn work. Bring yarn forward. *Insert the right needle from back to front between the first 2 stitches on the left needle. Wrap the yarn around and draw a loop through. Insert the left needle tip into this loop from right to left and remove the right needle from the stitch. Repeat from * to cast on the required number of buttonhole stitches plus 1 (lower left).
Step 3: Turn work. Slip 1 stitch purlwise to the right needle (lower middle). Pass the second last stitch over the just slipped stitch (lower right). Return 1 stitch to the left needle. Work to the end as instructed.
A sweater in size 2XL is not an enlarged version of the sample size. When grading is not done properly, you will get an unrealistically wide shoulder width, exceptionally long neck to waist measurement, etc. I had a hard time picking a good pattern when I was looking for a pattern for a plus size friend.
Fortunately it is relatively easy to identify a poorly graded pattern from the schematic measurements. It won’t take you much time and will potentially help you save a huge amount of frustration. The key measurements to compare are shoulder width (or back width), back length (neck to natural waist) and armhole depth. You can compare these measurements against a sweater you already own in a similar style. A slight difference is perfectly normal, but any difference above 5 cm / 2″ is an alarm that the pattern may not be properly graded. You should then check how these measurements vary among sizes. This is a more advanced topic that I hope to discuss in the future.
I confess that weaving in ends is the least interesting part for me for every project. No exception. I can easily spend one hour weaving in all those ends. So when I worked on my Minimissimi Sweater Coat, I had to find a way to make it less tedious. Below is an excerpt from the pattern. I hope that you find it useful 🙂
Joining a New Ball of Yarn
What is: A knotless and “froggable” method to join in a new ball of yarn for those who find weaving in ends tedious and time consuming.
How to: When you are at the last 25 cm / 10″ of the old ball, keep on working with the old yarn, but twist the new yarn around the old yarn after each stitch. Remember to leave a short end (2 cm / 0.75″) of the new yarn sticking out on the wrong side. After hiding about 5 cm / 2″ of the new yarn, work one stitch with the new yarn then work one stitch with the old yarn, alternating several times. Now reverse the process, working with the new yarn while twisting the old yarn around the new yarn after each stitch. Leave a short end of the old yarn sticking out on the wrong side.
When to use: You can knit in new yarn using this method any time the wrong side of the fabric is not visible from the outside. Otherwise, weave in ends when finishing.
I’m obsessed about increases and decreases. I almost always make a swatch for each project to decide on which increase and decrease to use. Top down designs are particularly challenging as increases often have to be worked on every row and not many increases look good that way.
In my most recent design Matilde Cardigan, I had one more problem: the design is asymmetric. One raglan seam is worked with increases and the other is worked with decreases. After trying out all the increases I knew about, I came up with my own. Here you are:
Lifted increase used in Matilde Cardigan
- inc1-L – insert left needle into the st below the one just worked from back to front, push and lift the right leg of that st, knit into the lifted st from this position.
- inc1-R – knit into the back leg of next st, without releasing it, knit also into the front leg of the same st, release it. Do not confuse it with kfb (knit into front then back of same stitch).
In this swatch, we are going to work k3, inc1-L, inc1-R,…
And here is how it looks:
Can you tell which side is worked with increases and which side is worked with decreases? 😉
This pattern is released as a Mystery KAL, all the clues are released and the official photos will go live on April 11.