Monday, October 16, 2006

Steek Snipping

We awoke far too early yesterday, to the piercing cry of "MOM - I have to puke!" Racing barefoot to the bathroom, I got DD appropriately positioned, flipped on the light, and looked down to see the bloody skinless corpse of a little vole in the middle of the floor. I have no idea how we missed stepping in it, but with luck like that under my belt, it had to be an auspicious day for steek snipping.

The Fall Cardigan, body finished and shoulders seamed:

full body

In my neverending quest to avoid ever lining up two flat edges of knitting to be seamed, I worked out a way to do the short row shoulder shaping and the three needle bind-off all at once, without breaking the yarn. I was quite pleased with the results, particularly the way the pattern flows smoothly across the join.

shoulder seam

I stabilized the sleeve steeks with my trusty little Elna. I know the purists cringe at machine sewed steeks, but we can't all use authentic Shetland wool for every bit of stranded colour work (it's "sticky" enough to stay put with less secure stabilization methods) and steeking is such an elegant way to avoid both two colour purling and seams.

stabilized steeks

Took a big breath, and snipped:


Now it's on to the sleeves. Which will be somewhat tedious compared to the body, because of this:

loose ends

Ten different colours, changed every round, and even I couldn't justify stranding them all together, so they get cut and reattached every time. On the body, the yarn change occurs in the middle of the centre steek, so this wild nest of loose ends will disappear with a swift stroke of the scissors come zipper time. No such luck for the sleeves. I plan to knit the ends in as I go, weaving in the new yarn before the join, and the old yarn after, so as to reduce bulk.