Saturday, October 11, 2014

Ombre Yarneater: Colours and Underarms

Truth be told, I've already finished my Ombre Yarneater sweater and worn it a couple of times. (Ok, more like every chance I can.) But before I have a chance to get pictures, I'll show you some progress.

Last time I showed you the sweater, I was just to the split for the sleeves and was working with multiple strands. After that I jumped to the next colour, one of the Lana Grossa Olympia balls.
But after working a number of rows, I really didn't like the abrupt colour change. So I ripped back the Olympia and worked a few rows with the Malabrigo Aquarella. I had two skeins of the Aquarella and just happened to start with the skein that wasn't as green. This was perfect as the greener skein blended nicely.
I'm a lot happier with the transition now.

The second thing I'm going to show you is how I do the underarm stitches. I used to do what patterns told me and cast on additional stitches to go under the arm, and then pick up off the cast on edge when working the sleeves. (And in fact some patterns have you cast on for both the body and the sleeves and then sew this short seam later--even crazier crazy pants.)

But I thought, how much better to do a provisional cast on so that there is no tight pulling at the underarm seam. And that's what I did for a long time--a provisional cast on over a piece of scrap yarn. When I was ready to do the sleeves, I just picked up the stitches and continued on.

But after doing so many socks toe up and realizing that it's easier to do a short row toe when I cast on over the cable of the needle instead of scrap yarn that I have to pick up stitches from, I applied the same idea to my sweaters. (I know--you realized I could do this when I started the explanation, but it takes me a while, people.)

So when casting on additional stitches at the underarm while working the body, I did a simple figure-8 cast on over one needle and the cable.
After knitting the body, you can see where those additional stitches are knit down one way, but patiently waiting for the sleeve to be done the other way. The stitches sit on the same cable that is holding the sleeve stitches.
I started knitting the sleeve half way through those stitches so that my end of round would line up with the side "seam" and when finished it looked like this:
View along the side "seam". Sleeve on top; body below.
Like any place that you cast on extra stitches there can be loose stitches or holes at the sides. You can leave a long enough tail when you start the sleeve to close these up and/or work the stitches with a needle or hook afterward to tighten the loose ones and spread the slack out over more stitches in the same row.

I'll try to get finished pictures up real soon!

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