Aug 23, 2014

Japanese Short Rows?

This post was originally posted in my French blog.

I was recently in Short Rows Period: my WIPs, discovery of a new method, discussion on Twitter about the best way to wrap sts of W&T, that has given me food for thought.
Here's a little comparative study of different techniques. It's pretty long!

My default method was W&T. As this method is frequently employed in English patterns, I was used to this technique.
But you know, I'm Japanese, I compared it to Japanese methods. Yes, methods in the plural, because there are two.

You've perhaps heard of “the Japanese Short Rows method”, that only uses a slipped st at each turn. This technique only requires split markers (or safety pins, paper clips…) that you put on working yarn to mark the connecting loop. When you get back, you will lift it to resolve the gaps.

Another Japanese method uses YO and slipped st. It's the method Japanese knitters learn first as it's considered easier than "the Japanese Short Rows method". In brief, you make a YO at each turn, turn work and slip the first st of next row.

The thing those two methods have in common is "slipped st" at turns, which results in one less row than W&T method.
Here's the difference expressed in chart:

W&TJapanese methods

Grey cells indicate what you do (wrap in W&T, yo and slipped st in Japanese methods) and will disappear from RS once you resolve short rows. What we can see with the charts is that the "slope" is smoother with Japanese methods.

With a real yarn, you get this result:
Malabrigo, Silky Merino: London Sky!

On this picture, the sts just below short rows are marked with pins: from left to right, Japanese method with yo (method 2), "the" Japanese method (method 1) and W&T. And the row where short rows' gap is resolved is in darker blue. We can see that there are 3 rows between pinned row and dark row with W&T and only 2 rows with Japanese methods.

Then, Japanese methods are superior to W&T? The answer is yes and no.
Yes because the result is neater as I've demonstrated so far. And No because of the "handiness" of W&T: with the method 1, you need split markers or any other similar tool in your hands whereas you just need your needles and working yarn with W&T. As for the method 2, when resolving short rows, you simply knit the YO and the next st together on RS, but on WS, you have to reverse the YO and the next stitch before purling them together – yes, I'm slacker.

Then, what happens when you mix W&T and Japanese methods? That will be the subject of the next post!

Aug 19, 2014

Tender Peerie Flooers

As promised, here's the photos of Peerie Flooers hat in action.

The Supersoft 100% Wool from Holst Garn has got very soft after washing: stitches have become denser and the roughness and itchiness of the yarn disappeared!

The pattern being for adult, the hat needed to be adjusted particularly in height. I started with S size, worked only 3 rows of flowers instead of 4, and rewrote the crown pattern, trying to get motifs that look like little flowers...

My daughter loves it, that's the main thing. Hope she'll wear it this winter!

Pattern: Peerie Flooers by Kate Davies
Yarn: Holst Garn, Supersoft 100% Uld: Persian Rose, Oatmeal, Calypso, Ecru, Sunrise, Sweet Pea, Verbena, Clementine
Needle: 3.25mm/US 3
Measurements: 47 cm circ x 19 cm depth before blocking, 49 cm circ x 18 cm depth after blocking
On RavelryTender Peerie Flooers

Aug 9, 2014

The most jogless stripes

Yeah, the title is oxymoronic, but that is what I experimented in my work.

I'm a stripes lover and don't like seaming. I naturally looked for techniques to work stripes in round. When knitting Paulie cardigan, I came across the TECHknitter's post on the stuff, but after several trials, I gave up knitting sleeves in round and I sewed them!

I recently began (and now finished!) knitting Sheelseeker by Heidi Kirrmaier with Balance from o-wool, a pullover pattern with 2 rnds stripes all over. I remembered that there was a "jogless" stripe technique in a hat pattern I'd translated, Brynja Beret by Hélène Magnússon. I tried it and it worked marvelously fine!

Here's how to proceed (only in text).
1. You work with Color A to the end of rnd (knit the last st).
2. Slip back the last st onto LN.
3. Knit the replaced st with color B, and continue with color B to the last st.

4. At the end of the (first) Color B rnd, with RN tip, lift the Color A st just below the Color B st (both worked in previous rnd) onto LN.
5. You have Color A st and Color B st on LN. Knit these 2 sts together. The Color B st is behind the Color A one and invisible from RS.

This technique is also explained with photos in Hélène's latest book, Icelandic Handknits: 25 Heirloom Techniques and Projects (if you love the Nordic style knitting, you'll find your happiness as French people say ;)).

I all the same show you the result with photo. The arrow shows the end of the rnd. Isn't it great!?

If you've never been satisfied with other techniques, try it!
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