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Using a J-hook Cable Needle

The J-hook or shepherd's crook cable needle offers a number of advantages for knitting cables. Because it has both a leading and trailing arm of different lengths, the chances of twisting the stitches are minimized, because you can more easily tell if the cable needle has been twisted, when compared to cable needles whose arms are equal in length and symmetrical. In addition the deep U, holds the stitches well, so that they do not slip off easily. The following photographs illustrate these advantages as well as the cable needle in use.

Basic Toe Up Sock

There are times when a toe-up sock might be the preferred construction method, for example with slip stitch patterns that traverse multiple rows, like the fireflowers stitch pattern. Other cable or multi-row patterns may also benefit from a toe-up approach. It is more aesthetically pleasing to start and end a cable pattern in the middle; by starting long patterns at the toes, rather than the cuff, you are not left with awkward pattern adjustments to accomodate various foot lengths. You can more easily add a few stitch pattern rows before beginning the cuff for a pleasing transition, than reduce pattern rows on the foot to achieve a pleasing end. Perhaps the best reason of all for a toe up sock is when knitting for children--you can lengthen the sock as they grow, as you could for sleeves on a top down sweater for a child. For these cases there is a slightly modified cuff.

Basic Toe Up Sock - Provisional Cast On

The provisional or temporary cast on is used when you will knit from the foundation row, in the opposite direction, at a later stage of construction. It may be used in a toe-up sock, when adding ribbing to the lower edge of a garment or when you will be picking up stitches from the foundation row to work later. One of the dresses I recently knitted has cross-wise bands of cables; using a provisional cast on helps avoid bulk where the two end seams are joined in the round. The provisional cast on results in a smooth transition between sets of stitches. Read more .... for fully illustrated article and instructional videos.
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Color Work - Duplicate Stitch

Argyle Duplicate StitchArgyleDuplicate stitch is a type of embroidery on knitting which mimics the stocking stitch and provides a method of introducing color to a completed knitting project. The small swatch (not blocked) shows duplicate stitches in white and green added to a two-color sample to create an argyle pattern. This is the fourth in a series of articles on introducing color to knitting. For instructions on creating the duplicate stitch read more....

New Monica Knits Baby Sock Pattern for Sale!

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