KNITTING

August 30, 2005

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Introduction

Knitting is the art of using yarn or thread to make fabric from interlocking loops. Its origin has been traced as far back as the fourth or fifth century B.C. to sandal socks discovered in the Middle East. In the past, knitting has been the occupation of shepherds watching their flocks, sailors whiling away the hours of long voyages during the age of exploration, apprentices who studied it in 13th and 14th Century knitting guilds, and royal knitters in the court of England at the time of King Henry VIII. At certain times in history, only members of royalty were allowed to wear knitted items. One of the knitted garments on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London is a handsome handknitted silk shirt, which King Charles I wore on the day of his beheading. Handknitting is a popular pastime, producing items that are functional, economical, fashionable and fun to make. In addition, knitting offers an opportunity for creative selection of color and style, and allows you to fashion garments that really fit. For all these reasons and more, we think you will enjoy learning the art of knitting. The information in this document came from the web site http://www.wonderful-things.com/newknit.htm
A Compiled in a more legible and printer friendly document by Matthew Spong in April 2005, using L TEX.

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Contents
1 2 Introduction Learning To Knit 2.1 Casting On . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.1.1 2.1.2 2.1.3 2.1.4 2.1.5 2.2 Knitting On . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cable Cast-on . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Single Cast on . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Double Cast-On Method. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Looped Cast On . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 5 5 5 6 6 7 8 9 9 10 12 12 13 15 15 16 17 18 21 23 24 24 24 25 25 25 26 27

Holding The Yarn And Needles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.2.1 2.2.2 Forming the Knit Stitch/English . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Forming the Knit Stitch/Continental . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.3

Learning the Purl Stitch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.3.1 2.3.2 Forming the Purl Stitch/English . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Forming the Purl Stitch/Continental . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.4

Increasing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.4.1 2.4.2 2.4.3 2.4.4 Yarn-Over Increase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Raised Increase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lifted Increase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bar And Moss Increase . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.5

Decreasing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.5.1 Double Decreasing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.6

Binding Off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.6.1 2.6.2 2.6.3 2.6.4 2.6.5 2.6.6 Plain Bind-off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Suspended Bind-off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ending a bind off row. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Plain Bind Off Two Pieces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Invisible Bind Off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Crocheted Bind Off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.7

Cables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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2.8 2.9

Correcting Errors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Picking up Stitches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

30 32 33 33 33 33 34 34 36 37 39 40 41 42 48 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 62 63 64 65 66 67

2.10 Assembling a Garment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.10.1 Stockinette-side seams. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.10.2 Stockinette-shoulder seams. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.10.3 Ribbing-side seams. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.10.4 Garter stitch-side seams. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.10.5 Grafting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.11 Knitting with a Circular needle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.12 Knitting with Double Pointed Needles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.13 Instructions for knitting backwards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.14 The Perfect Buttonhole . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.15 Tips and Tricks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2.15.1 How to knit with elastic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2.15.2 Questions and Answers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Learning to Crochet 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 3.9 Right Handed Chain (ch st) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Left Handed Chain (ch st) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Single Crochet (sc) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Half Double Crochet (hdc) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Double Crochet (dc) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Triple Crochet (tr) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Double Triple Crochet (dtr) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Slip Stitch (sl st) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Variations on Elementary Stitches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.9.1 3.9.2 3.9.3 3.9.4 Working Between stitches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Double chain stitch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Double-faced double crochet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A double knot stitch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

3.10 Joining and securing yarns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3.11 Shaping Increasing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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3.12 Shaping Decreasing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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2.1

Learning To Knit
Casting On

Put simply, knitting is making fabric from interlocking loops of yarn. Each loop counts as one stitch. A stitch is formed when a knitting needle pulls a loop of yarn through another stitch on another needle. Stitches are worked from one needle to the other. The end result is a pliable, interlocked fabric. Since all stitches and rows of stitches are linked, the resulting fabric will unravel if just one stitch is cut. The first row of any knitting project is the ”cast-on” row. This provides the foundation for the stitches. The last row, which finishes the loops so they don’t unravel, is called the ”bind-off’ or ”cast-off” row. In the following pages, you will learn the basic stitches called ”knit” and ”purl.” Literally hundreds of patterns can be created by different combinations of knit and purl stitches, the simplest being the ”garter stitch” pattern. Garter stitch is a knit stitch worked on every row. In garter stitch, the right and wrong sides of the fabric will look exactly the same, and the fabric will stretch more lengthwise than crosswise. If you alternate rows of knit and purl stitches, you’re doing the ”stockinette” stitch (also known as the ”stocking” or ”jersey” stitch). This pattern has a right side (the knit stitch side) and will stretch more crosswise than lengthwise. Casting on is the first step in knitting These stitches become the first row of stitches and one selvage of your work, usually the bottom or hem. There are many ways to do this, and each way has different benefits depending on the elasticity or firmness required. All methods of casting on begin with a slip knot.

To form slip knot for first stitch, make a loop with yarn; insert needle under one length and draw through a loop and tighten.

2.1.1 Knitting On

Knitting on uses 2 needles and 1 strand of yarn. Each new stitch is knit and then transferred to left needle. Very versatile, soft when worked through front loop, firm if worked through the back loops. Hold needle with slip knot in left hand. Insert right needle into stitch and bring yarn around it as for knitting (A); draw yarn through to form a new stitch, but do not drop first loop from left needle(B). Instead transfer new stitch to left needle and knit into it to form next stitch.

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2.1.2 Cable Cast-on

Cable cast on is formed in the same way as knitting on, except for each new stitch , the needle is inserted between the two previous stitches. The resulting edge is decorative and elastic, well suited to ribbing and for edges of socks and hats.

Make slip knot and knit first stitch on. For each new stitch after that, insert the right needle between 2 stitches; wrap yarn as for knitting(A). Draw through a new stitch and transfer it to left needle(B). 2.1.3 Single Cast on

Single Cast on is done with 1 needle an a single length of yarn. It forms a delicate selvage particularly good for laces. Easy to do but hard to work off needle evenly for first row.

Make slip knot on right hand needle. Wrap yarn from ball around the left thumb as shown, grasp end between palm and back fingers. Turn thumb so back of it is facing you; insert needle needle into front of the loop formed by twisting the thumb. Slip thumb out of loop and pull yarn downward to tighted around needle. 6

2.1.4 Double Cast-On Method. It is called double because it uses two strands of yarn. It’s often recommended for first-time knitters and produces an elastic edge.

Measure off a length of yarn allowing 1” for each stitch you will cast on. Your pattern instructions will indicate this number. Make a slip-knot, it will be your first stitch.

To cast on the second stitch, and all subsequent stitches, hold the needle with the slip-knot in your right hand. Drape the short end of yarn over the thumb and the yarn from the ball over the index finger. Gently pull the two ends of yarn apart to tighten the loop. Take care not to tighten it too much. The stitch should glide easily over the needle. Both strands of yarn should rest in the palm of the left hand, with the last two fingers holding them down.

Pull the needle downward, then insert the point of the needle up through the loop that is on your thumb. Move the point of the needle over, then around the ”index-finger” strand of yarn. Bring the point of the needle back down through the thumb loop. Drop the thumb loop, then pull on the short end of yarn with your thumb. This will tighten the stitch. You now have two stitches on your needle. Repeat this process until the desired number of stitches have been cast on. 7

Remember not to pull your foundation row stitches too tightly. They should glide easily over the needle and be elastic. 2.1.5 Looped Cast On

Looped Cast On employes one needle and 2 lenghts of yarn; one yarn forms a foundation, the other is wrapped around it. Left intact, the edge is very flexible. If the foundation yarn is removed, stitches can be picked up for knitting.

Make slip knot in foundation yarn(light, then casting yarn(dark). Take foundation yarn over thumb, and casting yarn over index finger; grasp both yarns against palm.

Wrap casting yarn around needle front to back, foundation yarn around needle back to front(yarns should cross as shown.

Wrap casting yarn around needle again front to back. Pull downward so that yarns are under needle. Repeat steps 2 and 3.

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2.2

Holding The Yarn And Needles

Knitting uses only two basic stitches - the knit stitch and the purl stitch. It is the variations and combinations of these two stitches that create all the different stitch patterns which are possible in knitting. First you will learn the knit stitch. The knit stitch is one of two fundamental movements in knitting; it forms a flat vertical of fabric face. There are two basic styles of knitting-English and Continental; and the difference between the two is in how you hold the yarn. In the English method the yarn is held in the right hand. In continental knitting, the yarn is held in the left hand. Whatever your natural hand-preference, you should be able to master either method because the nature of knitting is basically ambidextrous. The right hand technique prevails in English speaking countries. In this approach yarn is drawn around the right needle with the right index finger. Tension is maintained by wrapping yarn in various ways around the hand. It is helpful to know continental knitting when you knit with two or more color yarns. 2.2.1 Forming the Knit Stitch/English

Hold needle with cast on stitches in left hand. Wrap the yarn over your index finger, under the middle and ring fingers and around your pinky. This creates the proper tension in the yarn which is necessary for creating stitches that are not too loose or too tight.

Holding yarn behind work, Insert the right needle into the first stitch. Hold it there with your left hand. With right index finger take the yarn around the right needle from back to front, so that it rests between the two needles. Slide the right needle down, then bring the point forward through the stitch, bringing the yarn with it At same time pushing the stitch on the left needle toward the top. (With time and practice this becomes almost one movement and will increase your speed.) Allow the stitch to slide off the left needle. Be careful to slip only the one stitch that was worked off the left needle. Do not allow any others to slip off. New stitch (loop just made remains on right needle) Repeat the above steps for each stitch on the left needle, pushing stitches forward on left needle with thumb, index, and middle fingers, moving stitches back on right needle with the thumb. Notice that at the beginning and 9

end of each stitch, the yarn is at the back of the work. At the end of the row, all the new stitches will be on the right needle, and the left needle will be empty. It is important to learn good habits early, so they will stay with you. Try to use this method of holding your work from the very beginning. Controlling the yarn with the left hand is customary in Eastern countries. The basic action is to scoop yarn from the left index finger onto the right needle. One method of controlling tension is with the last two fingers and the index finger. Any method for controlling tension you work out is acceptable. Speed is the ultimate goal and to achieve this you need to hold needles lightly and minimize all movements. They should be natural and comfortable for you. If you are straining then you need to revise your techniques. It is helpful to know continental knitting when you knit with two or more color yarns. 2.2.2 Forming the Knit Stitch/Continental

Hold needle with cast on stitches in right hand. Wrap the yarn over your left hand as shown. This creates the proper tension in the yarn which is necessary for creating stitches that are not too loose or too tight. Holding yarn behind work, Insert the right needle into the first stitch, from left to right. Twist the right needle and pull tip under the yarn to draw a loop through the stitch. At same time pushing the stitch on the left needle toward the top. (With time and practice this becomes almost one movement and will increase your speed.)

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Allow the stitch to slide off the left needle. Be careful to slip only the one stitch that was worked off the left needle. Do not allow any others to slip off. New stitch (loop just made remains on right needle) Repeat the above steps for each stitch on the left needle, pushing stitches forward on left needle with thumb, index, and middle fingers, moving stitches back on right needle with the thumb. Notice that at the beginning and end of each stitch, the yarn is at the back of the work. At the end of the row, all the new stitches will be on the right needle, and the left needle will be empty.

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2.3

Learning the Purl Stitch

Knitting uses only two basic stitches - the knit stitch and the purl stitch. It is the variations and combinations of these two stitches that create all the different stitch patterns which are possible in knitting. Now you are ready for the purl stitch. The purl stitch is the reverse of a knit stitch. It’s loop structure is a horizontal semicircle whereas the knit forms a flat vertical of fabric face. In forming the purl stitch, the movements are the reverse of the knit stitch. The needle enters the front of the stitch from back to front ,and the yarn held in front of the work is cast over needle back to front. When controlling yarn with the right hand purl stitches tend to be looser than knitted ones, because the yarn must be cast further than in a knit stitch Tension is maintained by wrapping yarn in various ways around the hand. It is helpful to know continental knitting when you knit with two or more color yarns. 2.3.1 Forming the Purl Stitch/English

Hold needle with cast on stitches in left hand. Wrap the yarn over your index finger, under the middle and ring fingers and around your pinky. This creates the proper tension in the yarn which is necessary for creating stitches that are not too loose or too tight.

Holding yarn in front work, Insert the right needle into the first stitch back to front(right to left) Hold it there with your left hand. With right index finger take the yarn backward over the right needle then forward and over it.

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Draw the loop on right needle backward through the stitch. At same time pushing the stitch on the left needle toward the top. (With time and practice this becomes almost one movement and will increase your speed.)

Allow the stitch to slide off the left needle. Be careful to slip only the one stitch that was worked off the left needle. Do not allow any others to slip off. New stitch (loop just made remains on right needle) Repeat the above steps for each stitch on the left needle, pushing stitches forward on left needle with thumb, index, and middle fingers, moving stitches back on right needle with the thumb. Notice that at the beginning and end of each stitch, the yarn is at the back of the work. At the end of the row, all the new stitches will be on the right needle, and the left needle will be empty. It is important to learn good habits early, so they will stay with you. Try to use this method of holding your work from the very beginning. 2.3.2 Forming the Purl Stitch/Continental Controlling the yarn with the left hand is customary in Eastern countries. The basic action is to scoop yarn from the left index finger onto the right needle. One method of controlling tension is with the last two fingers and the index finger. Any method for controlling tension you work out is acceptable. Speed is the ultimate goal and to achieve this you need to hold needles lightly and minimize all movements. They should be natural and comfortable for you. If you are straining then you need to revise your techniques. To form a purl stitch in Continental style, yarn is held taut with the left index finger while a new stitch is scooped up with the right needle. This action is facilitated by a forward twist of the wrist to release yarn, and by anchoring the working stitch with the thumb as the new stitch is drawn. It is helpful to know continental knitting when you knit with two or more color yarns.

Hold needle with cast on stitches in right hand. Wrap the yarn over your left hand as shown. This creates the proper tension in the yarn which is necessary for creating stitches that are not too loose or too tight. Holding yarn in front work, Insert the right needle into the first stitch, from right to left. Twist the left wrist so yarn on index finger comes toward you, then push back and down with right needle to draw a loop back through the stitch. and pull tip under the yarn to draw a loop through the stitch. At

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same time pushing the stitch on the left needle toward the top. (With time and practice this becomes almost one movement and will increase your speed.) Allow the stitch to slide off the left needle. Be careful to slip only the one stitch that was worked off the left needle. Do not allow any others to slip off. New stitch (loop just made remains on right needle) Repeat the above steps for each stitch on the left needle, pushing stitches forward on left needle with thumb, index, and middle fingers, moving stitches back on right needle with the thumb. Notice that at the beginning and end of each stitch, the yarn is at the back of the work. At the end of the row, all the new stitches will be on the right needle, and the left needle will be empty.

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2.4

Increasing

An increase (inc) is the addition of a stitch. Its main function is for shaping but is also used in combination with decreases to for lacy patterns. There are four basic increases, yarn over(YO), raised, lifted, and bar (M1). Casting on is also used for increasing , mainly for buttonhole or for adding multiple stitches at beginning or end of a row. 2.4.1 Yarn-Over Increase YO-increase is made by wrapping yarn around the needle between 2 stitches. Because a hole is made this method is used for laces . The basic techniques is to wrap yarn around the needle once. , to be knit or purled on the next row. The direction of wrap depends of the type of stitch that precedes and follows the YO.

YO-before first stitch. For picot edge, and some laces. Can be done either knitwise or purlwise.

YO-after knit stitch, before purl stitch.

YO-after knit stitch, before knit stitch. For stockinette and lacy stitches.

YO-after knit stitch, before knit stitch. For Garter stitch. YO-after purl stitch, before knit stitch YO-after purl stitch, before purl stitch. For reverse stockinette and lace stitches. 15

YO-after purl stitch, before purl stitch. For a purl garter stitch. 2.4.2 Raised Increase Raised Increase is made picking up a horizontal strand between two stitches and working it as if it were a stitch. There are two ways the strand. If you work in the front, a hole is left beneath, suitable for lace or decorative stitches. If you work into the back of the strand, the stitch is twisted and the increase is barely visible.

Insert left needle front to back under the horizontal bar that lies between the two stitches.

On a knit row for a decorative raised increase knit in to the front of the stitch. On a knit row for an invisible raised stitch knit into the back of the stitch. On a purl row for a decorative raised increase purl in to the front of the stitch. On a purl row for an invisible raised stitch purl into the back of the stitch. 16

2.4.3 Lifted Increase Lifted Increase is made by working into the stitch below as well as into the stitch itself. The result is almost invisible but there is a definite slant to the stitches . It is good to pair increases to each side of a center point.

To pair lifted increases on either side of a center stitch. Work a left increase before the center stitch and a right increase after it.

For a lifted knit right increase , insert needle in top of loop just below stitch, knit loop and then knit stitch on needle. For a lifted knit left increase , insert left needle in top of just completed stitch, pull back gently and knit it. For a lifted purl right increase , insert needle in top of loop just below stitch, purl loop and then purl stitch on needle. For a lifted purl left increase , insert left needle in top of just completed stitch, pull back gently and purl it.

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2.4.4 Bar And Moss Increase Bar And Moss Increase is made by working into the same stitch twice. For a bar increase, you knit into the front and the back of the stitch. For a moss increase knit into the front and purl into the back of the stitch.

For a bar increase on a knit row, knit into the front and the back of the same stitch

For a bar increase on a purl row, purl into the front and the back of the same stitch.

For a moss increase on a knit row, knit into the front and purl into the back of the same stitch 18

Double lace increase. YO before center stitch and after center stitch.

Double Moss increase: Knit and purl in the stitch just before center, knit center stitch; knit and purl in the next stitch

Double bar increase: knit into the front and back of stitch just before center, knit center stitch and then knit into the front and back of the next stitch

Double lifted increase into 1 stitch: knit loop below center stitch; knit into back of center stitch; knit again into loop below center.

Double lifted increase: In stitch before center, make lifted increase left, knit center stitch, Make a lifted right increase 19

Double raised increase: Knit into back of horizontal bar just before center; knit center stitch; knit into back of next bar.

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2.5

Decreasing

A decrease (dec) is the reduction of one or more stitches. It is used for shaping but also used in combination with increasing for bobbles and lace knitting. there are two basic methods with little difference in their appearance but the slipstictch method pulls less tightly and is easier to work when tension is tight. Each method pulls stitches on a definate slant. When working random decreases slant it not important. However when doing raglan shaping or lace work slant is very important. On the left side of center decrease slant to the right and on the right side of center decreases slant to the left. On the knit row of stockinette stitch, you would K1, Sl1 K1 PSSO, work to with 3 stitches of end and k2tog. Generally decreases are done every other row or every 4th, 6th row ,etc. but if you require more shaping you can decrease every row. Just watch the slant of your decreases.

Knit Decrease Left Sl1 K1 PSSO (sl1,k1,psso) Slip a stitch knitwise, knit the next stitch. Insert left needle into the front of the slipped stitch and pull it over the knitted one.

Knit Decrease Right K1 PSSO Knit the next stitch and return it to the left needle. Pass the next stitch over it. Replace stitch on right needle.

Knit Decrease Left K2togTBLKnit 2 stitches together though the back of both loops. Knit Decrease Right K2tog. Knit 2 stitches together though the front of both loops. Purl Decrease Right (sl1,k1,psso) Slip a stitch knitwise, purl the next stitch. 21

Insert left needle into the front of the slipped stitch and pull it over the knitted one.

Purl Decrease Left (P1 PSSO). Purl the next stitch and return it to the left needle. Pass the next stitch over it. Replace stitch on right needle.

Purl Decrease Left (P2togTBL) Purl 2 stitches together though the back of both loops.

Purl Decrease Right (P2tog)Purl 2 stitches together though the front of both loops. 22

2.5.1 Double Decreasing Double Decrease left (K3tog TBL)

Knit 3 stitches together through all back loops. Double Decrease Left Sl1 K1 PSSO

Slip a stitch knitwise, knit the 2 stitchs together. Insert left needle into the front of the slipped stitch and pull it over the knitted one. Double Decrease Right K3tog

Knit 3 stitches together though the front of all loops. Double Decrease Vertical

Slip 2 stitches to right needle, Knit next stitch, pass the 2 slipped stitches over the knit.

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2.6

Binding Off

Binding off (also called casting off) is the way stitches are removed from the needle so they will not unravel. Of the various methods the most versatile are the Plain Bind-off and the Suspended Bind-off. It is normally done on the right side and the stitches are worked as you see them(purl the Purls, knit the knits). The last three techniques are always god to know. 2.6.1 Plain Bind-off

The simplest most frequently used method. Work 2 stitches at beginning of row. Holding yarn in back,slip the first stitch over the 2nd and off the needle. Work the next stitch and do the same. Contine until last stitch is bound off. Cut a 5-8 inch tail and pull it through the last stitch. 2.6.2 Suspended Bind-off

Similair to the plain bind-off Work 2 stitches at beginning of row. Holding yarn in back,slip the first stitch over the 2nd as for plain but keep pulled stitch on left needle Work the next stitch, drop both stitches off the left needle at the same time. Repeat until 2 stitches remain and k2tog. Cut a 5-8 inch tail and pull it through the last stitch.

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2.6.3 Ending a bind off row. Cut a 5-8 inch tail and pull it through the last stitch. Then weave in ends. This little bit of instruction should at least get you started. To learn more about knitting, please visit your local retail needlework shop where you can purchase books, publications, supplies and find out about classes on knitting! 2.6.4 Plain Bind Off Two Pieces Plain Bind Off Two Pieces Forms a neat seamless joining. It can be used for two straight edges having and equal number of stitches, or for shoulder edges that have been shaped by turning.

With right sides together and both pieces held in the left hand, work the first stitch on each needle simultaneously. Work next two stitches together the same way. Slip the first stitch over the second stitch. Repeat across row. Ridge will be on wrong side. 2.6.5 Invisible Bind Off Invisibile Bind Off makes an inconspicuous finish for 1 x 1 ribbing, ideal for a cuff or turtleneck.

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To begin, cut yarn, leaving an end four times the knitting width; thread yarn in a tapestry needle. Insert tapestry needle knitwise into knit stitch at end of needle drop stitch off. Skip next purl stitch, insert needle purlwise in the next stitch; draw yarn through, insert needle purlwise in purl stitch at end of needle; draw yarn through; drop stitch off. Take needle behind the knit stitch an insert it knitwise into next purl stitch(bring yarn forward between stitches first) draw yarn through. Repeat across row. 2.6.6 Crocheted Bind Off Crocheted Bind Off the stitches are worked off in a chain stitch. The results are a firm and decorative edging appropriate for a blanket

Holding crochet hook in your hand as if it were a needle, insert it knitwise in first stitch, take yarn around hook. Draw through a loop and let first stitch drop of needle, Draw a loop through next stitch in same manner. Draw q loop through 2 loop on hook . Repeat to end.

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2.7

Cables

Crossing stitches is a way to produce certain decorative effects such as braid. Basket weave. Or honeycomb pattern. The stitches appear to be twisted because they are pulled diagonally right or left The left twist direction is determined by the way the stitches are worked-to the front or the back. To work two stitches, you work the second stitch on the left and then you work the first. Three stitches can also be exchanged in this manner, working the third stitch ., then the first and the second. Crossing more than three stitches is called cabling. This technique requires a double pointed or cable needle to hold the first stitches out of the way until worked. The holding needle should be the same size or smaller than the working needle. The look of a cable is varied by the number of stitches exchanged the number of rows between twists and the direction of twist.. If stitches held to front a cable twist to the left, if held in back a cable twist to the right.

Cross 2 stitches right, (2RK); Knit into front of second stitch on left needle but do not drop stitch off, Knit into first stitch , drop off both.

Cross 2 stitches left, (2LK); Knit into back of second stitch on left needle but do not drop stitch off, Knit into the back of first stitch , drop off both.

Cross 2 stitches right, (2RP); Purl into front of second stitch on left needle but do not drop stitch off, Purl into front first stitch , drop off both. 27

Cross 2 stitches left, (2LP); Purl into front of second stitch on left needle pass it over the first stitch and off neede. Purl into the front of first stitch , drop off needle.

Cross through 2 stitches right(2RK). Knit 2 stitches together through the front, knit the first stitch again, drop both of needle.

Cross through 2 stitches right(2LK). Knit 2 stitches together through the back, knit the first stitch again through the front, drop both of needle.

Cross through 2 stitches right(2RP). Purl 2 stitches together through the front, Purl the first stitch again, drop both of needle. 28

Cross through 2 stitches right(2LP). Purl 2 stitches together through the front, Purl the first stitch again through the back, drop both of needle.

Twisted cable right. Slip the cable stitches onto a cable needle, hold at back, knit stitches from left needle, knit from cable holder, continue in pattern.

Twisted cable left. Slip the cable stitches onto a cable needle, hold at front, knit stitches from left needle, knit from cable holder, continue in pattern.

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2.8

Correcting Errors

Sometimes it is necessary to correct a mistake in your knitting. A crochet hook is a necessary tool for this. You may have to drop a stitch several rows down in order to correct an error.

To retrieve a run in stockinette, insert a crochet hook front to back, hook it over the horizontal bar and draw through a loop.

To retrieve a run in garter, insert a crochet hook front to back, in each knit loop hook it over the horizontal bar and draw through a loop.

For a purl stitch in garter stitch, insert a crochet hook back to front, in each purl loop hook it over the horizontal bar and draw through a loop.

To retrieve a dropped knit stitch, insert the right needle through the loop, and under the strand. Insert left needle from front to back, and lift stitch gently over strand. The strand thus becomes a stitch facing the wrong way. Slip needle into loop and slip stitch to correct position for knitting.

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To retrieve a dropped purl stitch, insert the right needle through the loop, and under the strand. Insert left needle from front to back, and lift stitch gently over strand. The strand thus becomes a stitch facing the wrong way. Slip needle into loop and slip stitch to correct position for purling.

To correct an error several rows down, Mark the row error is in and then unravel the stitches to within 1 row of error, carefully unravel the remaining row and correct mistake. When picking up stitches after unraveling use a smaller needle, a size 1 or 2 works well. There is no pull on stitches to further unravel. To learn more about knitting, please visit your local retail needlework shop where you can purchase books, publications, supplies and find out about classes on knitting!

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2.9

Picking up Stitches

Picking up stitches permits you to add a collar, or finish a neck, or in some cases sleeves, without having to sew. Before picking up stitches mark you work so you can figure out an even distribution of stitches. There a number of ways to pick up stitches. You should use the method most comfortable for you.

Hold work in left hand, knit side facing. Insert right needle under the edge stitch, take yarn around needle as to knit. Bring stitch through to right side. Work proceeds from right to left, first row is knit on wrong side.

Hold yarn, needle and work in left hand, knit side facing. Insert hook under stitch, pull through a loop, place on needle, pull it snug. Work proceeds from left to right, first row is knit on right side.

Hold yarn, needle and work in right hand, wrong side facing. Insert hook under stitch, pull through a loop, place on needle, pull it snug. Work proceeds from right to left, first row is knit on right side.

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2.10

Assembling a Garment

The joining of knitted sections edge to edge makes for a smooth bulk less seam that is nearly invisible. There are 2 ways to do this: weaving and grafting.

2.10.1 Stockinette-side seams. Lay sections right side up corresponding stitches aligned, Attach yarn at right end. Insert needle under next horizontal loop adjacent to edge stitch on one section, then under corresponding loop on other.

2.10.2 Stockinette-shoulder seams. Lay sections right side up corresponding stitches aligned, Attach yarn at right end. Insert needle under next knit stitch adjacent to bindoff stitch on one section, then under corresponding stitch on other.

2.10.3 Ribbing-side seams. Lay sections right side up corresponding stitches aligned, Attach yarn at right end. Bring needle up through centers of next 2 corresponding stitchs, then down through centers of next 2 stitches. 33

2.10.4 Garter stitch-side seams. Lay sections right side up corresponding stitches aligned, Attach yarn at right end. Bring needle up through lower loop on one edge then down through corresponding upper loop on the other edge. 2.10.5 Grafting Grafting, also called the kitchener stitch, is weaving the stitches together directly from the needles. The seam is smooth and elastic. To graft, both edges must have the same number of stitches. It is used for the toes of a sock and for some shoulder seams. There are 2 ways to position work for grafting, 1) Hold both needles in left hand with wrong sides together. 2) Lay two sections face up on a flat surface. Use a tapestry needle to weave, removing stitches as completed.

Stockinette: To start, bring the needle purlwise through bottom and top end stitches; re-insert knitwise in bottom stitch, purlwise through next stitch on needle. *Insert needle knitwise in top stitch where thread emerges, purlwise through next stitch on needle. Insert needle knitwise through bottom stitch where thread emerges, purlwise through next stitch on needle.* Garter Stitch: To start, bring the needle purlwise through bottom and top end stitches; insert knitwise in next top stitch, purlwise through next stitch on needle. *Insert needle knitwise in bottom stitch where thread emerges, purlwise through next stitch on needle. Insert needle purlwise through top stitch where thread emerges, then knitwise through next stitch on needle.*

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2.11

Knitting with a Circular needle

To knit a tubular fabric, join cast on stitches, being very careful not to twist the stitches on needle. Place a marker between the 1st and last stitches. Knit around until you are back at the marker. That is your first round. Work in rounds until the desired length.

To knit a flat fabric work the circular needle back and forth as if it were straight needles.

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2.12

Knitting with Double Pointed Needles

To knit a tube with 4 (or 5) dp needles cast on 1/3(or 1/4) total number of stitches on each or 3 (or 4) needles. As you complete one needle, place the next one parallel and directly above it, with the point a little bit forward of the lower one.

Lay the three needles in a triangle (or 4 needles in a square), with the bottom needles of all stitches facing the center.

Using the 4th (or 5th) needle, knit into the first cast-on stitch, thus closing the triangle (or square). Pull extra firmly on the yarn for this stitch so there will not be a gap. When you have knitted all the stitches of the first needle, use that one to for the working needle, placing it behind the others as you knit.

Knit each section of the circle until you reach the beginning. That is 1 round. A marker is helpful but it cannot be used at the end of a needle. It has to be between 2 stitches. I suggest that you place the first 2 cast on on the 3rd needle so you can use a marker. 37

To knit a flat item, started at the center, Crochet a chain, having one loop for each stitch, join in a ring. Transfer the loop to one dp needle, then pick up and knit the correct number of stitches on each needle.

To knit a square from the center out, crochet 8 chains, join in a ring and pick up 2 stitches on each of 4 needles. On the first round increase 1 stitch between each 2 -stitch group. on the next and subsequent rounds increase 2 stitches at the center of eeach section. A Triangle is worked in the sme way, but with 6 stitches in 3 sections. A circle is made simarily but wuth 10 stitches on 5 needles: 1 increase is made in each section every round, moving its location 1 stitch forward each round.

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2.13

Instructions for knitting backwards

Knit a row. Instead of turning to purl, leave the needle holding the knitting on the right. Hold yarn in your right hand. Insert left-hand needle into stitch from row you just finished, inserting needle from the front (left) toward the back (right). The left-hand needle will be behind the right-hand needle. To knit stitch, bring yarn over left-hand needle (lifting yarn up and over the top of the needle) Back left-hand needle out of stitch from previous row, being very careful not to drop newly created stitch. Slide stitch from previous row off right-hand needle. Voila! You’ve just knitted a stitch backwards. Continue across the row and you will never have to purl again! Note: It will take a while before your gauge for knitting backwards is the same as your gauge for knitting forwards.

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2.14

The Perfect Buttonhole

1 Row Buttonhole 1. Work 3 stitches(or desired number stitches for placement of button hole) 2. Bring Yarn to front of work as if to purl. 3. Slip 1 stitch from left needle to right needle. 4. Return yarn to back as if to knit. 5. Drop yarn. You will not use yarn again until step 9. 6. Bind of 2 stitches without working them.(or desired number of stitches for size of buttonhole) To do this, pass the 1st slipped on right hand needle over the 1st stitch on left needle etc. 7. Slip stitch from right needle to left needle. 8. Turn your work as if you were going to do a short row or turn the heel of a sock. 9. Cast on 3 stitches if you have done a 2 stitch buttonhole. (Always cast on 1 more stitch than bound off.) 10. Turn work 11. Slip 1st stitch from right needle to left needle. 12. Knit these 2 stitches together and finish your row. 13. This completes the buttonhole in one row. It makes a very neat and tight buttonhole.

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2.15

Tips and Tricks

Are you confused by yarn weights and gauges? Here are some simple rules. Table 1: Stitches 28 sts 24 sts 20 sts 24 sts 20 sts 16 sts

Weight Fingering Weight Sport Weight DK or Double Knit Weight Worsted Weight Worsted Weight Bulky Weight

Inches 4 inches 4 inches 4 inches 4 inches 4 inches 4 inches

Needle Size 1-3 3-5 4-6 5-7 6-8 10-13

Always check the gauge listed on the yarn against the gauge required for your pattern to make sure you are buying the right yarn.

Be sure that you know, if your instructions were written in America or in Europe! There IS a difference. Particularly in the needles. American needles go from 1 - 15. The larger the number the larger the needle. English needles go from 15-1. The larger the number the smaller the needle. If you do not have a conversion chart, remember that a 7 is a 7 in both American and English. A little figuring will give you the correct size.

It takes X amount of stitches to make an inch It takes Y amount of inches to cover your body x times y divided by 2 = the amount of stitches you cast on. .....** plus a little more for ease**

If you tend to cast on too tight, try using a larger needle or you can hold two needles together while casting on.

Keep unwanted patterns from forming when using hand dyed yarns. Makers of hand dyed yarns recommend that you always work from two balls of yarn and alternate every other row. The same technique works very well if you find yourself having to use different dyelots. Before you run out of one lot, start ”stranding” in the new dyelot and you will never see the difference. The transition will be gradual.

For that cuddly wrap-around scarf, use a #17 needle and work the ”Mistake Rib” in thick, textured yarn. Quick and sensational.

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2.15.1 How to knit with elastic Kimberly Davis of Rainbow Elastic recommends a k1p1 ribbing. DO NOT cast on with the elastic but add it to the first row. Drop the elastic to the floor and unwind 1 or 2 yards (you will want to feel a slight pull.) Wrap the yarn and elastic around your index finger and knit your ribbing as usual. Keep a tension on your elastic, but don’t over stretch. When the ribbing is the size you desire, cut the elastic and tie it around your knitting yarn. Don’t forget that the most important place for knitting elastic is in your sleeve cuffs! If you don’t find the exact color of elastic to match your yarn, we recommend going a shade lighter.

Read your label carefully! It tells you how your garment will perform and how it should be treated. Needle recommendation not only gives you the gauge, but will lead to the best performance by the yarn. It is, for instance, very important NOT to exceed the recommended needle size when knitting with Chenille as it will stretch. Yarns will not hold their shape as well when knitted too loose.

Put your test swatch to good use. Measure it well in all directions and wash it the way you would wash your finished garment. Measure again carefully to compare to the original. You now know how it will look after washing, without jeopardizing your whole garment.

Save all your leftovers. Sort them by color families. Some of the most beautiful and original garments can be created. All you need is a basic pattern and a little magination to combine color, texture and design. It doesn’t even have to be all the same weight. A good start is to use an 8 or 9 needle and then double some of the thinner yarns, reduce the number of stitches in a section for a bulky yarn and then increase back to original for regular weight. Double strand two different textures and even colors to create your own effect. That’s what the designers do.

Don’t forget that you can combine yarns to get different weights. If you need a sport weight yarn... combine two fingering yarns. If you need a worsted weight yarn.... combine two sport yarns. If you need a bulky yarn... combine two worsted weight yarns. Always check your gauge, but many times this is a great way to use up extra yarns you have.

Count your rows! Use one of the handy counters for the job or and you will never mismatch pieces. Mark every 10th row with a gold safety pin and your pieces will always be the same length. Also a good way to keep track of increases.

Although all of our yarn labels and patterns recommend particular needle sizes and gauges, not all knitters will be able to obtain the measurements, as given. We cannot stress strongly enough, the concept and importance of gauge. Because each knitter works projects at their own tension, each knitter’s piece, of the same pattern, will be slightly different. We think this is one of the elements that keeps knitting interesting.

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It is imperative that you work a gauge swatch, in the prescribed stitch, of your chosen pattern. If your gauge is not as given in the pattern, experiment by increasing or decreasing the needle size, until your guage matches the one given in the pattern. Some knitters never get the correct gauge. They simply make a judgement call, and work the size they think will fit them most suitably.

How do you choose a size? Do you consciously decide what size pullover you are going to knit? Or do you always make a size medium? Is your husband a standard size large and that is what you always knit him? The size of the sweater you choose to knit, is one of the most important decisions you will make for each knitting project. Gone are the days of choosing a size by translating chest size into a sweater size! The easiest rule of thumb, when choosing the size you are going to knit, is to measure the chest of a favorite fitting sweater, in a similar weight yarn and stitch, and choose the size closest in measurement on the pattern. Always refer to the finished measurements section of the pattern, not the size description. Some yarn company’s size small finishes at 32” others finish at 40” Also, take into account the yarn you will be knitting with, the stitch(es), and the thickness of the fabric you are creating, when choosing a size. For example, a bulky Montera cabled sweater should have an easier, looser fit than a finely knit Inca Alpaca sweater, that will be worn under a jacket. Take into account the undergarments you will be wearing. Will you wear a turtleneck, a fitted shirt, another sweater, or nothing? All of these factors affect the fit of the finished garment.

Always pick up EVERY stitch when picking up necklines, then decrease down to the number of stitches required by the pattern in your first row. A good rule of thumb is to pick up every stitch and the decrease by 1/3

Another method for prevent holes when picking up around a neckline, is to twist every stitch on the first row. This tightens the picked up stitch and will give a smooth even look to the neck.

When measuring for gauge, I like to measure the entire width of my swatch, and divide that number into the amount of stitches. Be sure to take it OFF the needles before measuring. The result will be the number of stitches per inch.

When knitting an item for a gift, be sure and enclose the yarn label so the new owner will know how to care for the garment, and also enclose your knitted swatch. Then they have a sample of the yarnfor repairs if necessary.

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When knitting garments for children, try knitting the sleeves from the shoulder down. When the child has a growing spurt, you can unravel the cuff and knit the sleeve longer.

If you are in a crunch and do not have any stitch markers, use a small scrap of different colored yarn from your yarn bin and knot a small loop. The loop can travel on your needle between stitches like a marker. Caution: do not use a thick yarn because it might leave an indention between your stitches. Some people like to use the bone rings as markers, but this can be as big a problem as using a think yarn.

The most accurate method of measuring wide pieces (when the width of your knitting is more than the length of one needle), is to work halfway across a row, lay the work flat on a table and spread the sts evenly across the 2 needles.

Always measure the length at the center of your work, never at side edges which are usually looser. Place a marker at the center of the last row before you start decreasing for an armhole shaping. This makes it easier to measure the armhole length when you come to it.

Store small chunks of Irish Spring bath soap with your wool to ward off hungry moths.

Leave shoulder stitches on needles or stitch holders instead of binding off. When back and front are completed, knit together and bind off at shoulder seam. Seam is smooth and flat. This is also called the 3 needle method.

When joining a new skein of yarn, knit 3 stitches using both the end of the old skein and the beginning of the new skein. Drop old skein, and continue with new skein.

No more musty sweaters! Sweaters can take forever to dry lying on a towel. Just take a standard box fan, use four ”stadium cups” to make legs and create a flat table with the fan blowing up. Put the sweater and towel (not dripping wet) on the fan set on low. It should be dry in a few hours.

Grafting (weaving) in pattern: If you need to graft in pattern, and are having trouble following the path of the yarn, try working a swatch in pattern. When you come to the row to be grafted, work it with a strongly contrasting color, then work a few more rows in the main color. Use the swatch as a guide for grafting your project. This is particularly useful when you need to lengthen or shorten something, or correct a mistake without having to rip back to it.

Sweater repair: When you’re making a sweater, be sure to save some of the yarn for possible repairs. One way to keep it with the sweater, and more likely to match if it’s needed is to weave it into a seam, so that it’s washed along with the sweater. If you can’t find match the color in knitting yarn, try needlepoint yarn, which comes in a wide range of shades. While it’s thinner and usually more firmly spun, you can

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use several strands to match the weight, and the texture difference is less likely to show than a poor color match. If the sweater gets washed, it’s a good idea to wash the yarn before using it.

Twisted cord: Recently when I needed to make a length of twisted cord for a project, Put a screw-in hook in a little hand drill instead of a drill bit. Guesstimate the amount of yarn you’ll need (each strand should be approximately 1 1/2; times the finished length) and fasten the ends so you have a loop at each end; hook the far end to something solid, and slip the near end over the hook in the drill. Crank until you have enough twist [test by letting a short length twist back on itself to see if you like the results - keep on cranking if it’s not enough], keeping tension on the yarn. Grab the middle of the yarn - this is the point where it’s nice to have help, especially if halfway is farther than you can reach - fold in half, bring both ends together and let it twist back on itself. Even up the twist, knot and trim the ends.

Winding a center pull ball of yarn: First wind about a dozen or so wraps around widely spread fingers. Use this as the foundation for your ball, always keeping the end of the tuft sticking out of the ball. Hold the tuft between your thumb and index finger and wind around the thumb and finger for several wraps, then turn and wind across the first wraps, keeping the tuft inside your fingers. Continue to wrap and turn, wrapping over more fingers as the ball grows. When you come to the end of the skein, either tuck the loose end under the last few wraps or tie it around them in a single knot. This method gives you a ball that won’t roll away and unwind if you drop it - it’s also easier to pull from when it’s in a knitting bag.

Binding off in purl: When finishing a piece of garter stitch knitting, such as a border or buttonband, binding off in purl from the right side makes a very tidy finish. An easy way to do this is as follows: purl the first st, place it back on the left needle, *p2tog, place resulting stitch back on left needle, rep from * until all sts have been worked, fasten off.

Remember: Perfection is for machines! We are people and make mistakes, making each garment uniquely our own. Stitches in colorwork will not always look perfect due to stranding, joining, knitting-in, etc. No one is going to scrutinize your work with a microscope and neither should you! Relax and enjoy!

Chained edge on garter stitch: For a neat edge in garter stitch, complete row, turn work, leaving yarn in front; slip first st purlwise, then take yarn to back between the tips of the needles, knit across row. Repeat for every row.

Recycling previously knitted yarn: After the yarn has been ripped out and wound into skeins (you can wind it around a box, or a chairback if you don’t have a niddy noddy), tie the skeins in 3 or 4 places to keep it from tangling. Wash and rinse the skeins. If you’re not sure of the fiber content, it’s best to treat them gently, keeping agitation and temperature changes to a minimum. Spin or blot out as much excess moisture as possible, then hang the skeins in an area with good air circulation. If you want to add a little weight to help straighten the yarn, a plastic hanger (no need to worry about rust!) is often enough weight for a small skein, or hang a bit more weight on the hanger. Too much weight will overstretch the yarn, which can throw your gauge off later. When the skeins are dry, see below to wind it into center pull balls!

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Knitting Ends In: When changing colors, insert needle into next stitch to be knitted in the new color, take the ends of the old color and new color, pass them over the strand you’re about to knit with, and then knit with that strand. When knitting the next stitch, pass the two ends over the new strand again. Repeat this every stitch or two until you’ve knit in about 3” of the ends. Then you can just cut off the remaining ends later (but don’t cut them flush with the fabric; leave a little bit sticking out on the wrong side).

Intarsia says: 1) I don’t recommend using bobbins. Use either loose ends (no longer than 3 yards or so) and/or small balls. No matter what you do, occasional de-tangling is necessary but it’s easier to pull ends through than untangle bobbins that like to lock together. 2) When adding a new color, knit the first stitch with that color (leaving a 3-5” tail), then pass both the old color strand and tail over the new strand to lock them in place. Knit the next stitch, then give the strands a tug to tighten up the stitches. You can proceed to knit in the tail if the work permits or leave it to weave in later. 3) It’s very important to cross the strands over each other when dropping one color and switching to another. This prevents holes. What I do is to put my needle into the next stitch where the new color is going, drop my old color, and make sure it’s laying over the strand I’m about to pick-up. Then as I finish knitting the stitch, the new strand catches up the dropped strand. It’s helpful to give both strands a tug and make sure the stitches involved in the join aren’t loose. 4) Sometimes no matter how careful you are, stitches (especially at the joins) will look distorted or loose. This can usually be remedied by taking a cable needle or other blunt needle and playing with the stitch on the right side until it looks better. Pulling the knit-in end on the wrong side helps too. As long as the stitch is firmly in place, if it’s a little distorted, don’t worry about it. 5) Knit-in or weave in the ends? If the piece is very busy, with small areas of colors or stripes, knitting-in the ends works - and is a great time-saver! However, if large areas of color are involved, the distortion caused by knitting-in will probably detract from the design. It that case, leaving 3-5” ends and weaving them in later will be necessary. Work a pattern section or, say, one-third of the piece, and then weave the ends in for that portion. It’s much better than doing it all at once!

Fair Isle: Stretch those stitches as you strand! Preventing puckering is the most difficult aspect of Fair Isle knitting. If you’re working in the round, make sure your wire is long enough so you can stretch the stitches as you go. Knit, Stretch, Strand: Strand no more than 3 stitches, keeping in mind that the strand should be moderately tense - not too tight, not too loose.

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When you complete your garment, and have put together...run a length of the yarn, up each side of the inside seams. This will mean that this ”extra” will get washed at the same time as the garment and therefore will be the same color. Then if you need it for repair you have it.

I suggest you always keep a ”diary” of your knitting projects. Take a picture. Write on a sheet of paper, a 3 x 5”..whatever your choice... the needle size, the yarn used, any problems, a copy of the pattern. Then when someone loves it and you need to repeat the project, all information is at your fingertips. I also always put in a label with the care and washing instructions.

Needles are always all over the place. Particularly those of us with multiple projects going. Rather than to be fastidious about returning the needles to their proper cases each and every time...I put all of the not being used needles into a popcorn can (those big jobbers you get at Christmas time) and then once a week, I return them to their cases.

For buttonhole bindings, when the yarn is too heavy: You can either split out a ply or two for this or head to the DMC floss drawers, and match. With 1200 colors you can’t go wrong. For repairs in your sweaters: Use the invisible thread and you can rebuild what is broken or torn. Not easy to work with but it surely is effective.On older garments, afghans or the like. Where you can feel them getting dry and brittle. Use hair rinse in the rinse water or if it is seriously dry, dump in some glycerin which you can get at the local pharmacy.

Use your yarn to ”sew” on your buttonholes. Loop it in there, cross it over, and tie it on the back. Big time saver and it looks great! When stringing beads for a project use a dental floss threader (available at drugstores). Put yarn through the loop. The tip of the threader is firm enough and small enough to string any size bead.

We are coming up upon the season where we knit for others and as such...we find they have a tendency to ”lose” the wrappers which have washing instructions. Why not try writing out the washing/drying instructions on a piece of interfacing with a permanent mark. then sandwich this interfacing between two sheets of fusible interfacing and sew it inside the sweater somewhere. I do wash the label a couple of times to make sure it does not run.

For binding off at the neck: Increase your needle size by three sizes and bind off tightly. The tight binding makes the gauge more even, and the bigger needles keeps the neck size loose enough to fit.

For garments that have a predisposition to stretching (cottons, silks, etc.), use a needle for the ribbing that is three sizes smaller than the body needle.When casting on a large number of stitches, especially on circular needles, slip on a counter ringer every ten or twenty stitches. It will help when you count for the total as you can count by tens, or twenties instead of every blessed stitch over and over. And! All you have to do is remove them when they are no longer needed on the next round.

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Some Terms.....PLY: Let’s clear up a term that seems to confuse many knitters-PLY! It cannot be said often enough that it isn’t the number of plies that determines the size or weight of the yarn: a lot of baby yarns are three ply and a lot of bulks are two ply. What is PLY? A ply is a single strand of spun yarn. It can be twisted tightly or loosely. Yarn is made up of varying numbers or amounts of plies. These are usually twisted in the opposite direction of the individual strands to correct its natural tendency to slant as it is worked. This is also called biasing.

Weight When discussing yarns, it is more precise to refer to weight rather than ply. Weight indicates the thickness of a yarn, while the number of plies tells only how many strands are twisted together and does NOT indicate the thickness. The usual yarn weights, and the ones you will hear most often are: Fingering, Sport, Worsted, Bulky and Extra Bulky or Chunky. Fingering weight many times is called ”baby yarn” or sock yarn the DK weight It usually is a sport weight, but, slightly ”above” sport and slightly below worsted. For you old timers, we had one called afghan weight that is like many of the current DKs. It is most interesting to compare the yarns, supposedly of the same size. One can be super soft, because of how the plies were all twisted together, where another may be much firmer, and almost stiff. Novelty yarns come about from the plying of many different types of yarn to make one yarn. Boucle comes about by allowing one of the plies to form loops around one of the plies, and the third one may hold it all together. Try new yarns.

Double Knitting.... The term ”double knitting” is a little confusing for most knitters. There are at least three uses of the term, and each one means something different. Double knitting is a British term for a yarn usually knitted at a gauge of 6st/8 rows to an inch on #4 needlesroughly a sport weight yarn. Double knitting can also refer to a knitting technique that makes a tubular fabric on two needles. An excellent book on this technique is Beverly Royce’s ”NOTES ON DOUBLE KNITTING” published by Schoolhouse Press. A third type of double knitting is done in two colors, and a patterned design. It makes a double sided, or reversible fabric. 2.15.2 Questions and Answers What are the advantages and disadvantages of pure wool versus acrylic yarn? The advantages and disadvantages of pure wool are: It is warmer than acrylic. 48

It is less likely to pill than an acrylic, though the more expensive acrylics. Wools are less likely to pill. It will last longer. It keeps it shape better It generally repells stains and spills. Some wools can be machine washed on a gentle cycle, but most if not all have to be dried flat. Some wools are ’itchy’ but some wools, especially the Merino blends, are very soft. What about allergies? As wool is composed of the same protiens as human hair and fingernails, it is unlikely that one is allergic. It may be the dyes of chemicals used in the processing but not the wool. The advantages and disadvantages of acrylic yarn are: It is generally cheaper then wool. It is moth proof . Generally, it can be machine washed and machine dried, but read the ball band first! It is mainly non-allergenic It does have a tendency to pill. It stains rather easily, particulary grease or oil stains. It does not ”breathe, so it is not nearly as warm as wool It does not repel moisture. You obviously have to select the yarn for the application. In general, buy the best yarn that you can afford. Most good yarn stores do have a lay-away program, 1 or 2 skeins at a time is generally not a shock to the budget. Given the amount of time you put into a project, you want it to last. Some people find that a wool/acrylic mixture is a good compromise. Some wool/acrylic mixtures can be machine washed and machine dried. Read the label!

I have unraveled a sweater and the yarn in kinked. How can I straighten it? Take a wire coat hanger and form it into a square. Wind your yarn onto the coat hanger, spreading it out as much as possible. Hang it in a shower stall and run hot water to fill the stall with steam. The idea is to steam the yarn, not to wash it! You can see the crinkles dropping out of it. When it looks straight remove from the shower and rewind it. Do not leave it on the hanger, incase the hanger goes rusty. Another method is to skein the yarn on a swift of even the back of a chair and put it on the glass rack of your dish washer during the steam(or drying) cycle. The steam from that will generally unkink it. Remember the longer the yarn has been knit, the more difficult to unkink. 49

What if I am running out of yarn before I am finished my project? Is there anyway to get more yarn of the same dye lot as I have? The first thing is to try the store where you bought it. A good yarn store will find it for you if at all possible. You can use yarn of the same colour but a different dye lot, and use this on the ribbing or the collar. It is far better to use an odd dyelot on the ribbings, as the chnge of stitch and needle size minimizes the color difference. You can also cut off the bands, pick up the stitches and knit the bands in a different dyelot or even a contrasting color. That is the avenue of last resort. You can even use the different dye lot on separate pieces of the garment, (such as sleeves) as long as there is a visual break such as a seam. Check though that the new dye lot is close to the old one.

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Abbreviation approx beg BO CC cm cn co cont dec dp/dpn foll garter g inc k kb k1, s1, psso k2tog k2tog tbl Kinc K st LH mmeter(s) MC M1 ndl(s) oz p p2tog p2tog tbl pat pm psso rem rep rev St st RH RS rnd SKP SK2P sl sl st sl1,k1,psso SSK st(s) St st/SS

Table 2: Knitting Abbreviations Meaning approximately begin(ning) bind off contrasting color centimeter(s) cable needle cast on/cast off continue(ing) decrease(ing) double pointed needles(s) follow(s)(ing) knit all rows gram(s) increase(ing) knit knit in back of stitch knit one, slip one, pass slipped stitch over knit 2 together knit 2 together through back loop reach into loop 2 rows below and K into st. left-hand mmmillimeter(s) main/master color make one knitting needl(es) ounce(s) purl purl 2 together purl 2 together through back loop pattern place marker pass slip stitch over remaining repeat reverse stockinette stitch right hand right side round slip1, knit 1, pass slip stitch(es) over slip 1 knit 2 stitches together, pass slip stitch(es) over slip slip stitch slip 1, knit 1, pass slipped st over slip 1, slip 1, knit 2 together stitch(es) stockinette stitch, stocking stitch

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Abbreviation tbl tog WS wyib wyif yd yfon yfrn yo yon yrn ]

Table 3: Knitting Abbreviations (cont.) Meaning through back loop(s) together wrong side with yarn in back with yarn in front yard(s) yarn forward over needle yarn forward and round needle yarn over yarn over needle yarn round needle repeat instructions following or between asterisk as indicated repeat instructions inside brackets as indicated

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3

Learning to Crochet

Crocheting can be done with any yarn or thread that is used for knitting. Just be sure that the thread and the hook size are compatabile. Knitting is much more versitle but crocheting is beginning to make a definate fashion statement. Crocheting is a popular pastime, producing itemsthat are functional,economical, fashionable and fun to make. The patterns are much more interesting and expiring than in previous times. As with any art there are those who prefer knitting or crocheting. What ever your choice the excitement of fibers and colors are awesome. For all these reasons and more, we think you will enjoy learning the art of crocheting. Crochet hooks are made in many sizes and materials. The steel crochet hooks , used for fine thread and doilies are sized from 00 to 16. The higher the number the smaller the hook. Then you have the yarn hooks. They start at a B and got up to a Q. The higher the letter the larger the hook.

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3.1

Right Handed Chain (ch st)

All crochet stitches are formations of interlocking loops. The simplest and the beginning is the chain. There are 2 ways to hold the hook. Either is correct, you need to use what is more comfortable. As with knitting tension is all important. Hold the yarn any way that is comfortable and maintains tension of the yarn. Right Handed Crochet:

#1. Hold as if hook were a knife,

#2. Hold as if hook were a pencil,

The chain stitch is the first row of every crochet project. It should be loose so that the hook can be inserted easuly for the second row. To start a chain, make a slip knot. Insert hook right to left. Pulling on both ends, draw in loop to hook.

Holding the slip knot between thumb and middle finger (I prefer my idex finger.), draw yarn through to make a nother loop. Continue in this matter to do the base chain.

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3.2

Left Handed Chain (ch st)

All crochet stitches are formations of interlocking loops. The simplest and the beginning is the chain. There are 2 ways to hold the hook. Either is correct, you need to use what is more comfortable. As with knitting tension is all important. Hold the yarn any way that is comfortable and maintains tension of the yarn. Left Handed crochet is just the opposite.

#1. Hold as if hook were a knife,

#2. Hold as if hook were a pencil,

The chain stitch is the first row of every crochet project. It should be loose so that the hook can be inserted easuly for the second row. To start a chain., make a slip knot. Insert hook right to left. Pulling on both ends, draw in loop to hook.

Holding the slip knot between thumb and middle finger(I prefer my idex finger.), draw yarn through to make a nother loop. Continue in this matter to do the base chain.

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3.3

Single Crochet (sc)

The single crochet stitch is the shortest of the basic stitches. It makes a firm flat fabric. Insert hook in 2nd chain from hook. Catch Yarn, A, and draw a loop through the loop.(2 loops on hook), Yarn over hook and pull through both loops on hook to complete stitch. Work a single in each chain across row. After last stitch chain 1, turn and begin 2nd row.

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3.4

Half Double Crochet (hdc)

The half double crochet stitch is slightly taller than the single. It has a pronunced ridge in its fabric. YO and insert hook in 3rd chain from hook. Catch Yarn, A, and draw a loop through the loop.(3 loops on hook), Yarn over and pull through all 3 loops loops on hook to complete stitch. Work a half double across row in each chain across row. After last stitch chain 2, turn and begin 2nd row.

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3.5

Double Crochet (dc)

The double crochet stitch twice the height of the single and less compact. It forms the basis of many pattern stitches. YO and insert hook in 4th chain from hook. Catch Yarn, A, and draw a loop through the chain.(3 loops on hook), Yarn over and pull through 2 loops, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook to complete stitch. Work a double across row in each chain across row. After last stitch chain 3, turn and begin 2nd row.

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3.6

Triple Crochet (tr)

The triple crochet stitch more open than the double. It is used less frequently. YO twice and insert hook in 5th chain from hook. Catch Yarn, A, and draw a loop through the chain.(4 loops on hook), Yarn over and pull through 2 loops, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook to complete stitch. Work a triplr across row in each chain across row. After last stitch chain 4, turn and begin 2nd row.

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3.7

Double Triple Crochet (dtr)

The double triple crochet stitch . Essentially the same as the triple but with one more YO. You can make it higher by adding another YO and another pull through 2 loops on hook, YO three times, and insert hook in 6th chain from hook. Catch Yarn, A, and draw a loop through the chain.(5 loops on hook), Yarn over and pull through 2 loops, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook, Yarn over and pull through 2 loops on hook to complete stitch. Work a triplr across row in each chain across row. After last stitch chain 5, turn and begin 2nd row.

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3.8

Slip Stitch (sl st)

The slip stitch is a very short stitch used for joining as is closing of a ring or seaming two pieces. It is sometimes worked around an edge to strengthen it and to minimize stretching. Insert hook in shain and catch yarn, draw a loop through the chain and the loop on the hook.

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3.9

Variations on Elementary Stitches

Working under one loop produces a ribbed effect and a more open pattern than is achieved with the usual technique of working under both loops.

To work the back loop only, insert hook front to back with a downward motion, catch the yarn and pull loop through and complete stitch.

To work the front loop only, insert hook front to back with an upward motion, catch the yarn and pull loop through and complete stitch. 3.9.1 Working Between stitches is used in many patterns. One or more chains are made between the stitches in one row, in the next row you crochet into the chain or chain space. The results are different for each method.

To work chain between stitches insert hook under the 2 top loops and make a stitch through the chain.

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To work a chain space between stitches insert hook under the chain and make a stitch or group of stitches over the chain through the chain. Working around the post creates a three dimensional effect. The post stitches can be worked to either the front or the back of the post, or a combination of front and back.

To work a post dc around the back, yarn over hook front to back between the next two stitches, then bring it forward between the stitch being worked and the one after it; hook is now positioned horizontally in back or stitch. Complete the dc.

To work a post dc around the front, yarn over hook back to front to back between the next two stitches, then bring it forward between the stitch being worked and the one after it; hook is now positioned horizontally in front or stitch. Complete the dc. 3.9.2 Double chain stitch makes a sturdier foundation than a simple chain. it can also be used alone for a trim or cord 63

Make a slip knot and chain 2, work a single crochet in 2nd chain from hook *insert hook under the left loop of the single crochet, catch yarn and draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops*, Repeat until chain is desired length. 3.9.3 Double-faced double crochet makes a very thick fabric.

Row 1: *1 double crochet in each chain*chain 3 Turn. Row2: With fabric sideways, skip 1st stitch, *yarn over, insert hook in back loop of next stitch and back

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stitch of foundation chain, draw a loop through the 2 back loops, then complete dc.* Repeat between *’s to end, chain 3, turn. Repeat Row 2 for pattern. 3.9.4 A double knot stitch is a formation of elongated loops interlocked to produce a mesh fabric similar to netting. 1/2 inch loops agree recommended but any length will do.

Work 1 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook *lengthen the loop to 1/2inch, draw up a new loop, then take hook across the front of the elongated loop and insert it under the yarn that was drawn up for the new loop, work 1 single crochet * to complete single knot. Repeat instruction between *’s . *Skip 3 chains, work 1 single crochet in next chain, make 1 knot. Repeat across row ending with 3 single knot stitches. Turn work, work 1 single crochet in center of next double knot. Repeat across row. This row repeated forms pattern.

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3.10

Joining and securing yarns

To join a new yarn at the end of a row work the last stitch with the first yarn to final 2 loops, draw up the last loop with the new yarn.

Cut the first yarn to 2”. Make a chain, turn. Pull up 2 short yarns and lay over previous row: work over them for 4-5 stitches.

To secure yarn end(fasten off) on finished work, cut yarn to a 6’ length: pull end through the last loop and tighten it.

Thread yarn end in tapestry or yarn needle, weave into the back of work for 1-2” below top row of stitches. Cut remainder.

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3.11

Shaping Increasing

To make a single increase, work 2 stitches in 1 stitch. Single crochet is shown in example.

To make a double increase, work 3 stitches in 1 stitch. Single crochet is shown in example.

To make a decorative double increase (lacy Chevron), work 2 chains at increase location. On next and Subsequent rows, work (1 stitch, 2 chains, 1 stitch) in 2-chain space of previous row. To increase several stitches at one edge, as when a sleeve is made in one piece with the garment, extend A chain from the side edge, then work back along the chain on the next row.

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3.12

Shaping Decreasing

To decrease 1 stitch in ingle or half double crochet, insert hook in next stitch, draw up a loop(3 loops on hook), yarn over, draw through the 3 loops. If an increase occurs at the beginning of a row, you can, if you prefer, skip the first stitch instead of working 2 stitches together. If a decrease is at the end of the row skip the next to last stitch.

To decrease 2 stitches in single or half double, insert hook in stitch, draw up a loop, skip net stitch, insert hook in net stitch, and draw up a loop (3 loops on hook) yarn over, pull through the 3 loops.

To decrease 1 stitch in double crochet, yarn over, insert hook in stitch, draw up a loop, yarn over, and draw through 2 loops, yarn over, insert hook in net stitch draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops(3 loops on hook) yarn 0ver, draw through all 3 loops. If an decrease occurs at the beginning of a row, you can, if you prefer, skip the first stitch instead of working 2 stitches together. If a decrease is at the end of the row skip the next to last stitch. To decrease 2 stitches in double crochet, yarn over, insert hook in stitch, draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops, skip next stitch, yarn over, insert hook in net stitch draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops(3 loops on hook) yarn 0ver, draw through all 3 loops. If an decrease occurs at the beginning of a row, you can, if you prefer, skip the first stitch instead of working 2 stitches together. If a decrease is at the end of the row skip the next to last stitch.

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To decrease 1 stitch in Triple crochet, yarn over twice, insert hook in stitch, draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops, yarn over, draw through 2 loops, yarn over twice, insert hook in next stitch draw up a loop, yarn over, draw through 2 loops(3 loops on hook) yarn 0ver, draw through all 3 loops. I

To decrease 2 stitches in Triple crochet, Follow method for decreasing 1 stitch but skip 1 stitch.

To decrease several stitches at the beginning of a row without an abrupt change in stitch heights, omit turning chain and work slip stitches for the number of decreases. Make 1 single crochet and then finish the row. Do not work the slip stitches on next row. To decrease several stitches at the end of a row without an abrupt change in stitch heights, leave unworked the number of stitches to be decreased, work 1 slip stitch at end of row. chain 1 turn . Skip the slip stitch, work 1 single crochet in the next stitch, then continues in pattern. 70

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