Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tips for the New Year

In 2010 I'm going to offer you knitting tips that I've discovered. Some are ones I've actually stumbled on by doing them because I didn't like what I was seeing, and some will be ones that I've read or heard from others. Since you are well aware that I love to knit socks, I think my first two tips will relate to sock knitting. If you don't knit socks, these may not make sense to you. If you do someday decide to knit socks you will discover that these two tips you will help you achieve a more professional finish.

Tip #1 (socks)
Count the number of rows you knit on the heel flap (how many rows you slipped the first stitch on the knit and the purl sides). If you knit 36 rows you will have 18 slip stitches on each side of the heel flap. That tells me I would pick up and knit 18 stitches along the heel flap; then I would pick up and knit one more near the corner by the instep stitches. That extra stitch will often close any holes or gaps that can occur there. On the second side of the heel flap you will pick up and knit the extra stitch right after you knit across the instep stitches; then pick up the remaining 18 stitches.

Tip #2 (socks)
On the round after you've picked up the stitches along the heel, knit the picked-up stitches through the back loops. Doing this keeps the stitches tight against the heel flap. (This round is also a decrease round, but I do my decreases as called for in my pattern. I don't bother with changing them, since they close up any gaps that you might have from the picked-up stitches.)

FYI: I just got a really nice thank-you note from my nephew's wife, Karie. She loved the socks I knitted for her, and even wore them to a New Year's Eve pajama party (with her slippers)! Of course living in southern California you can run around in your pajamas, socks and slippers. In Iowa we'd have had to wear socks (possibly two pairs, long underwear pants and top, pajamas, ski pants, boots and down parka!

Happy Knitting,


Carol said...

Love the sock tips, Nancy!