16 February 2007

Why block a piece?

Jill asked why I would block the sleeve before attaching it to the body. I've started to look at a single sleeve as a good gauge swatch when experimenting with a pattern, so my new preferred order for knitting up sweaters is sleeve/body/sleeve. I think this also helps with the dreaded Second Sleeve Syndrome (also known as Second Sock Syndrome), since the first sleeve becomes all about figuring out this new sweater, and then the second sleeve is the home stretch after spending all that time with the body.

So, blocking. I wanted to make sure that the lace section wouldn't grow enormously when blocked, since lace has a tendency to open up, and I hadn't worked with this lace stitch before. And people are always telling you to wash your swatches before knitting the piece in question, since the yarn can bloom (see Clara's reviews of yarns at Knitter's Review), which will affect gauge.

Now I have a better idea of how my sweater will knit up.

I cast on for the body and did one lace repeat last night. The pattern has you cast on 87 stitches each for front and back at my size, so I am doing the first three and last four as stockinette, and the remaining 80 per side in Fish Tail II. Not sure how many repeats I want at the bottom and how often to extend fishtails up into the higher parts of the body. That should sort itself out this weekend.

The best thing about knitted lace (as opposed to lace knitting, which has pattern stitches in every round and is not for me at this stage of my life) in the round is that the even rounds are just knit. No purling! Not that I really have anything against purling, being Purly, but the knit rounds are a little faster for me.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Purly. I wish I could take a class with you, you speak so clearly and kindly to the rest of us silly-geese out here in the world. Oh wait! Maybe I can, at your LYS! Where is that again?


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