sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

October 3, 2006

i still love stitch and bitch
posted by soe 9:40 am

Two years after I learned to knit, I still am still learning new techniques. The current non-sock project involves learning cables and buttonholes. Cables were surprisingly easy to grasp, if a bit harder to tink (unknit), but since I was working with bulky wool, the stitches weren’t in a hurry to run away on me.

The buttonhole was a little trickier. I understood the concept: bind off stitches on one side of your fabric; pick them up on the flip side. But I just couldn’t grasp the reality of how to cast on stitches purlside. I tried a couple of my own ideas; no dice. I looked online and didn’t understand what people meant. My frustration level neared dizzying heights as I stomped back and forth between and the couch and the computer during commercial breaks last night.

Finally, I consulted the library. And you know what? Debbie Stoller’s Stitch and Bitch made me understand in three seconds. “Oh! That’s what they were all trying to say!” Yes — a purl stitch is just the backside of a knit stitch. So just flip the whole stupid project over and cast on the two stitches knitwise and then wrap the yarn back around your last stitch before you put in on the needle and resume purling on the wrong side of your work. (Debbie explains it much better on page 70 of her book.)

So thanks, Debbie, for once again helping me understand what in the world I needed to do to move on with the project. Your book consistently helps me out of tight jams in a clear manner. I am grateful.

Oh, and my project? The yarn should come off the needles tonight and might even get sewn up, depending on how long the cabled portion needs to block.

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