Sunday, December 1, 2013

Knitting a Bit - Mobius Scarf

This weekend has been so hectic, and so fun, that it wasn't until yesterday that I got any time at all to knit, and that was interspersed with listening to my son and his buddy watching the remarkable college football games, cooking, doing chores, filling orders (the Black Friday special's still on), buying groceries, and the kind of what-have-you activities that make one wonder, "Where did the weekend go?"  This wasn't conducive to working on my current "Fabled Cables" projects.

I decided to knit something smaller and faster late in the afternoon.  I have far more ideas for knitting than I ever seem to have time to knit, but I have been thinking about a really good Mobius scarf for a while.  I had made a bunch of them quite a few years ago, but never was really satisfied with them.

One of my readers wrote me about grafting ribbing, and he said he'd been able to do a good job grafting knit one, purl one ribbing by putting the stitches on knitting needles (instead of waste yarn) and doing it that way.  That got me to thinking about an invisibly grafted Mobius scarf.

My best Mobius scarf so far is really good sock yarn, about 100 grams, knit 5, purl 5 over 110 stitches, 225 rows begun and ended with waste yarn, then twisted once and grafted as invisibly as I could.  This was done on the standard gauge machine at tension 8.1, both main bed and ribber, and you have to get things adjusted well so that all the stitches always knit off - just enough weight, and smooth-feeding yarn at a fairly loose tension.  I made three of them before I was fairly happy, sewing them up as the guys yelled at the TV. 

Here's how the scarf looks, first around the neck as a cowl and then pulled up to keep neck and ears warm.  

You could block the knit 5, purl 5 flatter, but mine, following the natural roll of the knitting, gathers up almost double and is quite thick.

There's one problem, at least for now.  While I finally managed an excellent, nearly invisible graft. visible in the macro picture as the lightest row in the middle of the photo, I haven't figured out how I'll film and teach the technique.   I have a few ideas, but I'll have to experiment.  It probably needs to be taught using bulky yarn and having a single row of thread or ravel cord as a "guide line" to follow as you sew.

Perhaps this can be my December video, perhaps not - we'll see.