Easy ways to avoid the familiar pitfalls



embroidery; the other side has little purl bumps. Consider the outline-stitch side to be the "right" side, and knit on up the sweater. When the body is finished, return to the lower edge to knit the hem. With the "right" side facing you, knit up into the little purl bumps behind the outline stitch, one stitch for each cast-on stitch. You will note that the outline stitch makes a nice sharp fold for the hem (Figure 11.

To prevent the flaring problem, you have several choices. You can use a lighter-weight wool tor the hem itself. Or, if this is not feasible, decrease 10 percent of the stitches by working k8, k2tog around after the first round of the hem. You may want to use a needle one size smaller as well to help the hem hold in.

Now, if you've been thinking ahead, you will see how we are about to solve the

Hreadecl dimpling pitfall. We will not bind off, but will sew the stitches down right off rhe needle, one at a time, with a sharp metal sewing needle. Sliding off 10 to 15 stitches or working directly from the needle, skim lightly through the back of the fabric (making sure to stay on one horizontal row of the sweater) and then sew through the raw stitch. This will permit the hem to he as elastic as the garment

With all the above in mind, we will now let you in on what we consider to be the reward of the whole procedure: the message that is incorporated into the hem. What shall it be? The name of the recipient? Perhaps with the date and the name of the sweater? (Do you always name your sweaters, too?) Maybe a private joke or (it the circumference permits) a limerick? And which way up should we knit the message? So that, when the hem is folded back, the words will be easily legible to (A) the wearer or (B) the observer?

Get yourself some knitters graph paper and chart out the words. We usually make our letters 5 rows high. But, you may want a speechless hem with a pretty color pattern instead...which reminds us...for a super-neat job: When knitting the hem in a contrasting color, work the last 2 hem rounds in the predominant color of that to which it will be sewn. Since the hems are worked last, you can be thinking about all these things as you knit the body and sleeves.

The foregoing applies to cuff hems, as well as round necks.

Boatneck hems are another matter. A boatneck is really only a horizontal slit across the top of the body. A hem will have to lie flat as it travels around the 180-degree corners...seemingly a tricky bit of business.

After you have knitted up all neck stitches for the hem, mark the three corner stitches at each side with a safety pin. Work around, and increase 1 stitch each side of the > marked stitches every round for the entire depth of the hem. This is a fierce increase, but necessary in order to provide sufficient fabric to make the turns [Figure 31. Sew t he raw stitches down right off the needle—particularly important for any ind of neck hem, as a bind-off edge may well prevent the sweater from going over your head!

M But enough hemming and hawing. Go knit yourself ahem! —

Nordic Knitting Patterns
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  • Cohen
    How to outline stitch on knits?
    8 years ago

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