Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Knitting with Wire Lessons Learned

With only 2 wire bracelets under my belt, I decided to share a few lessons learned.
1. Use cheap metal needles that you won’t mind scratching up.
2. The needles will slip out of the stitches no matter how careful you are.
3. This won’t matter because the stitches won’t run (ladder).
4. This works for you when you drop stitches.
5. This works against you if you make a mistake and want to rip out stitches.
6. There is no need to cast on to 3 needles to make the bracelet in the round like in the picture I posted earlier. Cast all the required stitches onto one long metal needle. Pull out the long needle and divide up the stitches onto 3 needles. Knit with the 4th needle.
7. I found it helpful to knit on a pillow placed on my lap. This kept the knitting level so the needles were less likely to fall out.
8. Knitting ‘combination’ style so that the leading edge of the stitch is towards the back was easier.
9. When knitting combination style in the round, wrap the yarn the other direction than you would in forming a western-style knit stitch.
10. There is no need to hold the wire to regulate tension. This makes wrapping the yarn a breeze.
11. Combination style knitting is very important for setting up for the final k2tog bind off row. If you aren’t able to get used to combination knitting, just knit the western way and then rotate the stitches so they mount the other way before starting the bind off row.
12. Then pull the needle out, manually twist the stitches to face the other way and then scoop them back on the needle.
13. Use much smaller needles than you would use for yarn to obtain the same gauge. I knitted the bracelet with size 4 (3.5 mm). To even up the cast on row on the second bracelet, I used a size 9 (5.5 mm) needle.

keywords: knitting, wire

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