Hello, hello! I’m sure you can guess what I’ve been up to lately. Right, more packing. Not an exciting topic of conversation, so let’s move on. I grabbed a few minutes for a mini knitting tip. A tiplet, if you will!
Sometimes you have to un-knit part of your work-in-progress. It’s often called ripping or frogging. Frogging is an onomatopoeia… “rip it…rip it”… get it? It stinks when you have to do it, because it means you’ve screwed something up. But it happens. There are a couple of good, basic, ways to do it…
- One: Pull your knitting needles out, and rip out the yarn back as far as you need to go. The trick is then you have to insert your needle back into a row, and that can be hard to do without accidentally dropping stitches or losing your place in a pattern stitch or lace.
- Two: Un-knit each individual stitch in each row. It’s a slooow way to work, but can be helpful if you only have to go back a row or two, or you’re working an in-depth lace pattern and you don’t think there’s any way you can pull your needles out and find your way back again.
(Full disclosure: okay, so there are other ways to do this… you can insert a knitting needle several rows down and rip back to that, but it’s almost impossible to do in a pattern stitch. If you used a lifeline, you can also rip back to that. But the two above are basic techniques that I think a lot of knitters use.)
I like a combo of both methods! Especially if I’m working in a pattern stitch. It’s loads faster than un-knitting rows of work, and not as difficult as trying to rip a bunch of work and inserting your needle into stitches that are hanging out in space, hoping you can keep the stitches in pattern.
So here’s my tip: Pull your knitting needles out, and rip back to one row before the last row you need to remove. If you need to remove 8 rows total, rip back 7 rows only. I like to count each row as I pull the yarn out so I don’t go too far. Then I simply un-knit the last row using my left-hand needle, stitch by stitch, working left to right. Each un-knit stitch goes back on the left needle.
Once you’ve worked across the row, you have every stitch on the needle, exactly in pattern. Much easier than if you rip back completely and have to pick up those stitches that are hanging out in the air. Then all you need to do is continue knitting. Yep, that’s it. It’s a lot easier than ripping back to the row you need and trying to orient things in a pattern.
A pretty easy way to complete a task we all hate to need to do. 🙂
The pattern I’m working on here is So Neat and Sweet from A Stitch in Time vol. 2. I’m knitting it with Quince and Co. Finch, one of my new favorite yarns. I think this will be a great pullover for spring (which appears to have sprung early!). I’m picturing it with a nice patterned silk scarf tucked in at the neck, similar to the vintage version in the book. Though I’m woefully lacking in the scarf department, I definitely need to work on that!
Somehow in the middle of packing I’ve managed to knit the back and over half the front. It’s a stitch pattern that was easy to memorize, so I don’t have to sit down with a chart like my stranded pullover. I can just dive in. And right now, that’s about all my head can handle.
The colors are a little off in these photos, but it’s a nice buttery yellow. I think it will be a perfect staple pullover. Once we move and I dig out the sewing machine, I’m thinking a lovely 40s or 30s skirt. I believe I have some grayish blue gabardine… what do you think?
Anyone else knitting something from A Stitch in Time right now? I love the first volume, but I’m just adoring the new one!