Posts Tagged ‘bind-off’

The Game of “Bind-off Chicken”

May 4, 2016

Anyone who’s been knitting for a while knows the feeling: you’re nearly done your project and you’re nearly out of yarn. Will the yarn last? Or will you be forced to rip out a row or round or make a trip to the yarn in search of one more skein. With each stitch you bind off, you use the force of will (and maybe prayer) to make the yarn last.

Marcia played her first game of “Bind-off Chicken” at knitting class last night.  Eight stitches to bind off and a mere 2.5 inches of yarn remaining. Guess who won?

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She didn’t have another skein of yarn, which she’d bought in the sale bin at a LYS. She didn’t want to rip out a round of the sleeve cuff because it was only four rows and anything shorter just wouldn’t work she felt.

Fortunately, she hadn’t woven in any ends on the entire sweater. When she turned it inside out, she discovered 5 or 6 long strands — a whopping 2 or 3 feet of additional yarn — more than enough to join and finish the bind off. Whew!

Here’s a sneak peek of her sweater. With any luck, I’ll have more photos once it’s finished and blocked.

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Bermudiana Shawl Done!

August 25, 2015

Shawls always take longer than I expect. This shouldn’t come as a surprise since I’ve knit quite a few, but each time I’m reminded of just how long it takes to knit the several hundred stitches that make up a good “wrappable” shawl. How many stitches? For the Bermudiana, it was 463 — back and forth and back and forth and…

But now that the ends are woven in and the whole thing is blocked (a full-water block — I’m committed), I must say it’s lovely.

finished Bermudiana Shawl displayed on porch railing

I learned a few new things with this project: how to add beads (using a tiny crochet hook) and the i-cord bind-off. If you look very closely, you can see the gold beads in the lace “flowers” on the edge. They’d stand out better if I’d used the correct yarn for the lace edge, but I didn’t. Many thanks to friend Shelley, queen of the Sheep Ahoy Knitter’s Cruise, for giving me some of her yarn.

lace edge of Bermudiana shawl showing beads

The pattern called for an i-cord bind-off, so that’s what I did. Not sure I’d do that again soon. I’m not sure how much stability it adds and it’s a slow bind-off, which seems somehow unfair. By the time you get to the “I’m ready to bind off” part of a project, you’re ready to be done — and quickly. But I like learning and trying new techniques, so I stuck with it. Glad I did (even though I wasn’t so sure while doing it!).close up of i-cord bind-off along edge of Bermudiana Shawl

Simply Square

August 20, 2013

Beauty can be found in the intricate and the simple and, sometimes, in the combination of the two. For example, the Albers Cowl, which takes the simple square and, like its inspiration, Homage to the Square by designer-artist-educator Josef Albers, invites an almost endless interplay of color.

The cowl was the project featured in the cruise workshop on color theory. As you can see from the works in progress, the variety is beautiful.

AlbersCowlsGroup

The knitting itself is quite simple: garter stitch (aka knitting back and forth). There’s also a fair bit of binding off and picking up stitches along the edges.

AlbersPickUp

I’ve used four colors for my first square: apple green (leftover from Color Affection), cream, gold, and black with flecks of purple and green. It’s a log cabin construction, starting with a square in the middle, then adding a thin rectangle along the bottom edge, one up each side, and another along the top.

Albers1

The second square uses three colors: the very last bits of the apple green, cream, and purple. It’s not yet done, but I like the combination. Pardon the shadow. I was knitting while waiting in line for the ferry and just dropped it on the bricks to snap a quick shot.

Albers2

What I don’t like is that this square is turning out to be larger (significantly so) than the first. Same needles but the flecked black is a different (smaller) yarn, so that may explain the difference. I’m not going to think about whether I’ll take apart and reknit the black border of #1 — at least, not just yet.

Zig-zags on a Crescent

August 14, 2013

After a binding-off miscalculation, which resulted in a bit of tinking back and re-binding-off, the crescent shawl is done.

CrescentShawl

It’s a variation of Ann Weaver‘s basic triangle shawl; actually, a smaller version of her Saturated Shawl.  I didn’t discover until I’d blocked it that I’d been less than consistent in my increases. The result is that there are two zig-zaggy lines of increase “holes” from the center to the edge. I blame this mistake “design element” on the frequency with which I knit this while in a bar and/or while chatting with lively, engaging, and downright funny fellow knitters.

crescentshawl2

I used some lovely sock yarn that I bought in Ottawa earlier this spring: Blue Faced Leicester Sock by Riverside Studio in Quebec. The dyer is Kathryn, katdry on Ravelry, where she seems to be more active than her  Etsy shop (where I was unable to view the beautiful yarn that I know is there).

I added a couple of stripes of light gray that I took from the stash that Ann Weaver shared on our cruise. I wanted to set off the second triangle that starts about shoulder blade height. Of course, if you wear it wrapped around neck, the stripes appear every which way.

crescentwrapped

I used a new bind-off, taught to me by wonder-knitter Barb. One that’s looser and more stretchy, just right for the edge of a shawl that you want to drape every so loosely.

Instead of the usual knit 2, stitches then bind one off (looping one stitch over the next, resulting in one remaining stitch on right needle), you knit 2 stitches, then knit them together through the back. Like this:

bindoff

This leaves you one stitch on your right needle. Knit one more, then knit 2 together through the back again. Repeat until the end of the row. The result is a nice, loose edge – like this:

stretchybindoff

I’m looking forward to getting reacquainted with the Albers Cowl.

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