Friday, August 14, 2009

Winding Up Beginner Project

Last night, I began a video on the seams and finishing of the sweaters. Once that's edited and uploaded, that's the end of the beginner project. If you did the beginner course and the sweater, you're not a beginner anymore! Please send photos!

The upcoming lessons are on the garter bar. Most knitters could use a garter bar skill tune-up, and yet this simple accessory greatly extends your knitting possibilities.

Garter bars are readily available for standard gauge machines (4-1/2 mm needle spacing), and with a little searching, you can find one for your bulky (9 mm). This is a worthwhile accessory for your Japanese machine, whether it's new or 30 years old.

For instance, you can use the garter bar for these purposes:
  • as a stitch holder. You can make garment pieces and put them straight on the garter bar pieces for later pickup.

  • Speed and simplify the application of neck bands.

  • Add stitches evenly across a row to create a nice blousing at the cuffs of a garment.

  • Make vertical darts in a dress

  • Decrease stitches evenly across a row to create, for instance, a round fair isle neckline (see Teddy Bear Sweaters on

  • On a neck shaping job, put half the neck on the garter bar and "park it" while knitting the other half.

  • Turn cables

  • Make lace and other fancy transfer designs

  • Gather fabric

Oh, by the way, you can also use a garter bar to make garter stitch!

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