Buttonholes

It is important to place buttonholes in the correct place, which is two or three stitches in from the edge of the work. It is often worth over-sewing your buttonhole to give it a firm edge, since with time the wear on the threads on either side of the hole may cause the yarn to break and unravel.To do this, simply work an overstitch or small blanket stitch around each buttonhole.

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There are three different styles of buttonhole: eyelet horizontal, and vertical.

Vertical This buttonhole style is needed only where the strain on the button is up or down. It is very simple to do. Simply divide your work in two to make a vertical slit. At the point where the buttonhole begins, keep the remaining stitches on a stitch holder and continue knitting the stitches on your needle until the buttonhole measures the required length.Then keep these stitches on a stitch holder and repeat on the opposite side. When the work is of the same length, continue on all the stitches together so completing the buttonhole (see right).

Horizontal

This is the most common buttonhole to work It is used where the strain is from side to side, as on a cardigan button band.This method can be used to make a buttonhole for any size button.

IAt the required position and starting on a knit row, cast off the number of stitches required for the size of your button. On the return row, cast on over the cast-off stitches using the thumb method (see page 34) and work to the end of the row.

On the following rows, knit or purl the stitches, so that there are the number of stitches in the row is restored.

Sewing on a button

Where possible, use strands of yarn from your work to attach the button. When you have sewn the button on firmly, create a shank by wrapping the yarn around the base of the button, thereby strengthening the threads that join the button to the garment.

Making a button loop

On the opposite side to your button, make a loop with the same yarn that will fit over the button. Anchor the yarn at either end, and strengthen this loop by working blanket stitch along its length. Fasten off the yarn at the other end, working the end along the edge before cutting off.

Eyelet

This buttonhole is suitable for fine knitwear or baby wear and can also be used as a method for threading ribbon.

Working on a knit row, when you come to the place to make the eyelet buttonhole, put the yarn forward around the needle.

Eyelet

This buttonhole is suitable for fine knitwear or baby wear and can also be used as a method for threading ribbon.

2K2tog, then In the next row, the made stitch is purled in the usual way and small hole is formed.

Working on a knit row, when you come to the place to make the eyelet buttonhole, put the yarn forward around the needle.

finishing

finishing

Different weights of garment will require different preparations before being sewn up. Generally, the heavier the fabric, the less need there is for pulling the individual pieces into place using blocking or steaming before sewing up.

Blocking

This simply means pinning out the knitted pieces on a flat surface (usually a blanket or towel covered in cotton) and making sure the measurements are correct. It also enables you to pull all the stitches into place.

Pin all around the work, sticking the pins in vertically through the garment at 3-4 in. (7-10 cm) intervals into the soft surface below. Do not block any ribbing that is on a garment: this should be left loose.

Steaming

Never iron directly on your work, as it may burn or distort it, and it is hard to get a garment back to the correct shape once it has been damaged.

As an alternative to pressing pieces before sewing them up, you can sew them up first and then steam the garment with strong gusts of steam from an iron. Using a damp cloth with a hot, dry iron instead of using a steam iron is also very effective, but you must keep the cloth damp at all times. Have a bowl of water beside you as you iron, so that you can dip the cloth into it to redampen it Place the damp cloth onto the garment and press with the hot iron.

Sewing up

Having checked your pieces and prepared them (if necessary), you are now ready for the final stages of tidying up any ends and sewing the seams. If you have used contrast colors and the yarn has met midrow, weave the ends along the meeting point of the two colors. Never sew in ends across your work, as they will show and tend to pop through to the right side.

Backstitch

Use backstitch for the shoulder seams.This is a quick and firm stitch, which most people know how to do. It is done with right sides together. .Working from left to right bring the needle to the front and take it back in two stitches later. Go back on stitch and perform the same movement again—moving two steps forward and one step back.

Hints and tips

Sew your seams in the correct order to avoid confusion. O Sew the shoulder seams. © Set in the sleeves matching the centre to the shoulder seam. 0 Side and sleeve seams should be sewn all together to avoid bulkiness in the arm. O Collars or neckbands. © Buttonbands. 3 Pockets, patch or invisible. Q Hems, not usually necessary where ribbing has been used as an edge.

Mattress stitch

The best way to sew side seams together is using mattress stitch. It creates a wonderful flat seam that is strong and versatile and quick to do; and, if done well, it should be invisible.

1 Arrange the two pieces to be joined side by side, with their right sides facing you. Insert a threaded darning needle into the edge of one of the pieces from front to back, following a vertical line between the end and second to end stitch. Bring the needle up after two rows then pass the needle to the opposite side and repeat.

Continue in this way, pulling the edges together and being careful to follow the same vertical line.

Edge-to-edge stitch

There is also an edge-to-edge method that will form an almost invisible seam and will avoid any bulk or hardness to shoulder seam-type edges. With right sides facing you, insert a threaded darning needle from below into the end stitch. Pull the thread through then insert the needle into the matching stitch on the opposite piece and pass through two loops, coming out onto the right side. Insert the needle back into the original stitch where the thread first appeared from.This has the effect of a stitch that is sewn, not knitted.

Finishing the seams

Once the seams have been sewn, sew in any loose yarn ends by weaving them vertically into the seams.

THE PROJECTS

The projects in this section are designed for you to produce stunning

interior accessories for the home.The cushion selection incorporates a range of knitting skills and the charming simplicity of the coat hangers will enable even the novice knitter to make a beautiful item to be

proud of whilst the Navajo throw would be perfect in any setting.

you will need:
  • Yarn: bulky wool 6 x 2 oz. balls MC; 5 x 2 oz. balls CCI and CC2
  • Needles: #10 (6 mm)

Gauge: 15 sts/20 rows = 4 in. ( 10cm) over stocking stitch

Grade: 3

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