knitting

Fun with Double Decreases

I had some great news this week. I received the feedback for module 2 of the C&G course and everything was completed and passed – yay! I will post pics of my samples once they have been returned.

With a renewed motivation thanks to the C&G Ravelry Group I have been beavering away at module 3 and the end really is in sight now. I have discovered that the problem I have is that for every module so far I have knit up ALL the samples for the entire module in one go. Which then becomes a bit of a chore when it comes to writing them up as the notes are not easy to find and it’s hard to remember what you have done. It’s taken me ages to get them all written up and presented!

Someone on the group had a great tip for overcoming this which is to attach little tags to each sample detailing the yarn used, needle size, sample size, etc etc,. I will definitely be doing this in module 4.

Rather frustratingly I ended up having to re-knit all of my double decrease samples as I have no idea where I put my notes and I couldn’t decipher what method I had used just by looking at them. however, this turned out to be a really helpful exercise for me. Double decreases are used a lot in lace knitting, but because they are often teamed with a yarn over or 2 I have never really understood the difference of each method – surely 1 double decrease has the same effect as another right? Not so.

I sampled the 3 different double decrease methods that I am using in my Spring Haze wrap.

Sample 1 – K3tog 

Cast on an odd amount of stitches and PM one stitch before the centre stitch. On each knit row knit up to the marker and then insert the needle into the next 3 stitches and knit them all together.

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Here you can clearly see that by knitting the 3 stitches together it will create a ridge of stitches that slant to the right.

Sample 2 – Sl1-K2tog-Psso (or SK2P)

Cast on an odd amount of stitches and PM one stitch before the centre stitch. On each knit row knit up to the marker and then slip one stitch knitwise. Knit the next 2 sts together and then pass the slipped stitch over the knitted stitch (as if binding off).

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Here the stitches lie a little flatter than the K3tog and the left slants of each stitch are clearly defined.

Sample 3 – Sl2tog-k1-p2sso (or Raised Double Decrease)

Cast on an odd amount of stitches and PM one stitch before the centre stitch. On each knit row knit up to the marker and then slip 2 sts together knitwise. Knit the next st  and then pass the slipped stitch over the 2 skipped sts (as if binding off).

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The middle stitch is raised and perfectly centered with no slant.

Of course, there are other ways to do double decreases but I chose these 3 as they are the most common ones I have encountered.

Here are the first 2 samples worked in a lace pattern where you can clearly see the different effect of each method.

Double Decrease Example

Another really interesting single decrease technique I came across was the Bias Decrease. I stumbled across this on the Superneedles Knitting Adventures Blog and it’s such a pretty decrease I just had to try it out!

Bias Decrease

This effect is created by increasing a stitch at the beginning and end of every 2 rows and then making a double decrease to pull the edge stitches together at a slant. Instructions can be found here

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So pretty don’t you think?

knitting

I just love cats!

One of my favorite youtube videos is the one of Debbie, the internet dating crazy cat lady who just loves cats. It never fails to amuse me – if you haven’t seen it and you fancy a giggle you can check it out here

At the risk of sounding like said crazy cat lady I just had to share with you my latest knitting treats. As you know I am very slowly working my way through a lace intensive wrap called Spring Haze and my need for stitch markers has never been greater. I was perusing Etsy a few weeks ago as I wanted something a little more interesting than the standard plastic markers, as great a job as they do they are, well, just a bit dull.

And so I came across ‘Weeones Creations’. Oh my goodness, where to start! Jillian at Weeones makes the most incredible polymer clay stitch markers. Pretty much every animal you can think of has been miniaturized and hand sculpted into the cutest little character and the level of detail captured is amazing. I couldn’t resist and placed my order for some little cats. Because I love cats.

They arrived today!

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Aren’t they just the most adorable things you have ever seen?

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I think the one playing with the ball of yarn is my favorite. He looks like a teeny tiny version of my cat Mr.Pea.

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One even has a little mouse…

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And just look at the level of detail, they have little paw prints!

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Here they are in action

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I can’t wait to get cracking on with Spring Haze this evening 🙂

There is also a really interesting article on the Etsy blog where Jillian talks about quitting the day job to start her own business which you can read here. Inspiring stuff.