Friday, February 3, 2017

Lace: Left & Right Leaning Decreases

I’m knitting myself a cowl.  It’s a simple Chevron Lace that I’ve knit a few times before, but this time it’s for me.  The yarn is from my talented friend. The skein was a OOAK skein that she gave me as a Christmas present.  And of course, I had to cast on immediately!  I love the way the yarn is knitting up. 

The lace eyelets form chevrons across the width of the shawl and look best when you work the decreases to lean the correct way.  For this pattern, the left leaning decrease is the ssk and the right leaning decrease is the k2tog.  These are fairly common decreases and chances are good you know how to knit them.  The skpo is another left leaning decrease that looks almost identical to the ssk, but I prefer working the ssk.
k2tog: 2 sts that will be worked, k2tog needle entry, finished stitch
A k2tog is a right leaning decrease.  When a k2tog is worked, two stitches are worked as though they are one stitch.  The two stitches circled in blue on the left are going to be knit together as though they are one stitch.  The center pic shows the right needle being inserted knitwise through both stitches and the right pic shows the completed decrease.  Circled in blue on the right are the same two stitches from the right.  You can see how only one pink stitch has combined the two grey stitches and that the decrease leans to the right.

ssk: slipping a stitch knitwise, 2 slipped knitwise sts sitting on the rh* needle, knitting together through the back of the loops

An ssk is left leaning decrease.  When an ssk is worked, two stitches are worked together as though they are one, but in a different way than for a k2tog.  First the stitches are slipped knitwise.  The left pic shows a st being slipped knitwise.  The center pic shows both stitches slipped to the rh* needle.  The right pic shows the lh* needle inserted in front of the rh needle ready for the two stitches to be worked as one. The two stitches are being knit through the back of the loops to form the finished SSK.

Comparison: finished ssk, finished skpo
The pic on the left show the completed ssk.  You can see the two stitches from the left pic above now overlapping each other and forming one stitch and that the decrease leans to the left.  The pic on the right shows a skpo formed by slipping one st knitwise, knitting one st, and passing the slipped stitch over the knit stitch in a manner similar to casting off.  You can see that this decrease also leans to the left.  I prefer the execution of the ssk, although both give similar results.

I love how the orientation of the decreases emphasizes the chevron eyelets!

*rh = right hand, lh = left hand

Project Details:
Needles: 3.25mm US 3

Thursday, February 2, 2017

February Classes - Socks & Beginners & Sweaters, Oh My!!

February is typically the coldest month of the year where I come from and a good time for making some cozy wool socks.  This month at Southern Made, is Sock Skills Saturdays.  This is a great way to pick up new skills needed for making socks.  Drop in at 2:30 for 30 minutes with sock yarn and needles and learn!
February 4 – How to make Socks that fit

February 11 – Making a standard heel flap type of heel

February 18 – starting the toe

February 25 – Kitchener stitch – grafting the toe closed

One beginner knitting session is being offered as well.  Saturday, February 4. 

Beginners can choose from three projects.  A baby hat, fingerless mittens and boot toppers And a 5 session sweater class, suitable for someone who can knit and purl is beginning the week of February 21st.

More class details on Facebook at Pogknits

Monday, January 30, 2017


So much life in the past few years!  All good, some challenging, all bringing me here.  Again!

For the last 18 months or so, I've been enjoying teaching knitting and spinning at my local fiber arts store.  Sadly, they have announced that they will be closing their doors, leaving me with a need to find a new way to continue to fulfil my passion of passing on the love of fiber arts to others.

With encouragement from my family, I am in the process of making my home fiber studio a welcoming place for students.  I am offering Beginner Knitting and drop spindle classes, sweater knitting classes, sock knitting classes and customizable classes from my home studio, or a location of your choice. 

Please check facebook for current class schedules, and message me to reserve your spot.

Patterns, knitted items and handspun yarn will continue to be available in my etsy store. 

And if you'd like something spun or knit for you, please contact me to determine how best I can provide you with a product that is made with all the care and expertise that 20 years of knitting and 10 years of spinning can offer.