Mittwoch, 13. Juni 2018

Lateral Knitting

It's summer and in summer I don't really like knitting scarfs and gloves (except when I have a really good idea, but currently I have no such luck :), but summer projects.
So I decided to knit myself a simple summer sweater from old (and bulky) cotton yarn, that I had reclaimed from a failed project. Another top I knitted with this yarn was last year's Waterfall Tunic.
This sweater is knitted sideways and in one big piece. It starts at one sleeve, and ends at the second one. Since is it knitted in one piece, only minimal seaming is required :) It is also knit in plain garter stitch and (except for the neckline) in right-angled pieces. So it's a quick and easy project.

As with many of my pattern, this is NOT a stitch-by-stitch knitting pattern for various sizes. It is rather a tutorial how to contruct and knit a similar tunic - and of course you don't have to use bulky yarn but can use other yarn weights as well. I will give you my numbers and calculations as an example written in purple.

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  • a tape measure to take your measurements
  • 400 to 500 grams of Bulky weight cotton yarn
  • 6mm knitting needles
  • one stitch marker (to mark the middle of the piece) and some removable stitch markers (I put them in just below the ridge of a new part, to make counting the ridges a bit easier)
  • something that acts as a big stitch holder - or a knitting needle that's roughly the same size as your original needle or scrap yarn
  • a tapestry needle to weave in ends and to sew the pieces together

This piece is knitted from sleeve to sleeve in one piece. When reaching the shoulder stitches are cast on on each side (to reach the total length on the front and back).
When you reach the neckline, the piece is parted into a front (part 2) and back (part 3) part that are knitted one after the other. Afterwards both parts are joined again and knitted until you've reached the width of the body part. Then stitches on both sides of the arm are bound off and the second sleeve is knitted.

Swatching and Measurements
The schematic below shows the measurements that you should take

A = circumference of the sleeve (since there are not increases it should fit your arm at its widest point)
B = total length of your sweater (I wanted mine to be quite short)
C = depth of V-neck (to simplify the decreases here, I decided that the depth would be exactly one half of the width of the neck. Of course you can use a different ratio here, but with bulky yarn, there isn't much of a margin to play with.)
D = total width (at least half of your hip circumference)
E = length of arm
F = neck opening to start of arm
G = neck opening (please note: E times 2 plus F should equal D)
H = lower edge to just below the arm (H equals B-A/2)

Knit a swatch! And block it.
Then carefully count your stitches and rows and calculate the numbers of the measurements you've taken.

My swatch gave the following numbers: 10 cm = 12 to 12.5 sts in width and 10 cm = 12 to 13 ridges in height. Since I used cotton, I chose to use the smaller number. This is due to the fact that - in my experience - cotton tends to extend over time, i.e. gets wider and longer, especially if it's heavy.

Then I calculated: 
A = 40 cm: 40 / 10 x 12 = 48 => 48 sts
B = 52 cm: 52 / 10 x 12 = 62.4 => 62 sts
C = 11 cm: 11 / 10 x 12 = 13,2 => 13 sts
D = 52 cm: 52 / 10 x 12 = 62.4 => 62 ridges ( i.e. 124 garter stitch rows)
E = 16 cm: 16 / 10 x 12 = 19,2 => 19 ridges (i.e. 38 rows)
F = 15 cm: 15 / 10 x 12 = 18 => 18 ridges (i.e. 36 rows)
G = 22 cm: 22 / 10 x 12 = 26,4 => 26 ridges (i.e. 52 rows)
H = B-A/2: 62 - 48/2 = 62 - 24 = 38 => 38 sts


Part 1
CO A stitches
Knit E garter stitch ridges starting each row with a slipped stitch - in the last row, insert a stitch marker at the middle of the row (i.e. after knitting A/2 stitches)

(I CO 48 sts and knitted 19 ridges of garter stitch. I inserted my middle marker after the 24th stitch.)

CO-Ridge: With knitted CO, cast on H stitches on one side (front part), knit one row and CO H more stitches on the other side (back side), then knit back. Now you have Bx2 stitches on your needles.

Knit F-1 more garter stitch ridges.

(I did a knitted CO of 38 stitches on the front and 38 stitches on the back part. Afterwards, I had 124 stitches on my needles. Then I knitted 17 more garter stitch ridges.)

Part 2 - Front
Ridge 1: sl1, k to 3 bef middle marker, k2tog, k1 (you've now reached the middle marker), put the stitches of the back part on a stitch holder. For the next G ridges you'll only be knitting the stitches of the front part. Turn. k to end.

(I knitted 59 sts (62-3) before doing the k2tog, k1, then I put the stitches of the back part on a spare knitting needle. I turned and knitted back.)

Ridge 2: sl1, k to 3 bef turn, k2tog, k1; turn, sl1, k to end
Repeat ridge 2 G/2-2 more times. Now you've reached the tip of the V-shape.

(After doing ridge 2 once, I repeated it 11 times (26/2 - 2 = 13-2 = 11).)

Next ridge: sl1, k to last stitch, mk1, k1, turn, sl1, k to end.
Repeat this ridge G/2-1 more times.
You should now have the same number of stitches that you started part 2 with.

(After doing this ridge once, I repeated it 12 more times (26/2 - 1 = 13-1 = 12). And I was back to my original 62 stitches for the front part.)

Cut yarn.

Part 3 - Back
Put the stitches from the front part on a stitch holder and the stitches of the back part back on your needles.

Attach yarn and start from the middle of the piece.
Ridge 1: sl1, ssk, k to end, turn, k to end
Ridge 2 = Ridge 1
Ridge 3= sl1, k to end, turn, sl1, k to end
Repeat Ridge 3 G-5 more times. (After knitting ridge 3 once, I repeated it 21 times (26-5=21).)

Last but one ridge: sl1, k1, mk1, k to end, turn, sl1, k to end
Last Ridge: sl1, k1, mk1, k to end, turn, sl1, k to end

Now you've knitted the same number of rows you knitted for part 2, and you're back to the original number of stitches that you started part 3.

Cut yarn.

Part 4
Part 4 is basically part 1 knitted backwards.

Put all your stitches on your active needle again. And start from the bottom of the front.
Ridge 1: sl1, k to end, turn, sl1, k to end
Repeat ridge 1 F-1 more times. (In my case, 17 times.)

BO-Ridge: BO H stitches, k to end, turn, BO H stitches, k to end. There should be A stitches left on your needles.
Knit E-1 garter stitch ridges starting each row with a slipped stitch.
Then bind off.

Cut yarn, weave in ends and block.
Then seam the sides. I left about 5cm at the bottom hem.

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