Archive for November 6th, 2013

Knitting is math. Designing is part cosmic inspiration and a heavy dose of math. Tech editing knitting patterns that ignore math are worthy of a good cry. Which is what I had last night. Then I put the third season of Downton Abbey in the DVD player and chilled out.

Here are some small tips for designers.

Tip #1: The total number of decreases for armholes on the back of a garment should be an even number. The back of a garment has one armhole on each side. 1 + 1 = 2 armholes. The total number of decreases on one end of the needle should equal the total number of decreases on the other end of the needle, unless the design is a futuristic garment for aliens with mismatching sized arms.

Tip #2: If the garment is to be futuristic, post-apocalypse, or some other out of the main stream design, a small note to the tech editor indicating this is always greatly appreciated.

Tip #3: Each armhole should have the same number of decreases at the same intervals. For example, initial armhole decreases are usually 3 stitches each side or enough to equal .5 to 1″ (1 to 2.5) cm in width. Decreasing 3 stitches on one side and 5 on the other isn’t going to provide symmetry. Rather, decreasing 3 stitches at the beginning of the next two rows, works better. The decreases following the initial ones must also be paired. For example: Decrease 2 sts very 4th row each end of needle 4 times. Symmetrical shaping is key here.

Tip #4: Armhole depth is measured by the number of rows one works, not the number of stitches. This is where row gauge matters.

Tip #5: Armhole depth is usually worked over an even number of rows because rows are worked in pairs: a right side row followed by a wrong side row.

Now to change topics entirely.


Yes, Yarn Rascal earned another Gold Paw Award the other day. He successfully seized the Shetland Swatch and happily scampered all over the living room with it. I learned two things from the episode:

First, for a cobweb yarn, Shetland wool is awfully strong.

Second, Yarn Rascal is not able to help himself. It’s his DNA. He just doesn’t own the gene to help him control himself around yarn.

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