Monday, March 14, 2011

Here is our Birthday Pi - have a slice

     The first clue is up: download now.  I'd like to use this space to talk a bit about some technique options we have.
     As you know this is a circular knit.  There are many ways to start knitting in the round, some easier, some more complex.  Remember, it's your shawl and you can do it anyway you want - there is no wrong way.
    This is the cast on I use.  It's a bit tricky and maybe not for the faint of heart, but I like it very much and makes for an awesome, neat beginning.  You can do it with a crochet hook too and then transfer the stitches to the needles.
     There are other ways to start the shawl:  Emily Ocker's cast on is a popular one.  If you do a Google search, you'll find all kinds of tutorials and videos about circular cast on.
     If you tried your hand at a bunch of different cast on's and still can't get one you like, try this dirty trick.  Cast on the number of stitches you need using some waste yarn and knit back and forth for a few rows.  When you have a good length (1 inch or so), transfer your stitches to dpn's or circular needles and start knitting in the round.  When you're done with your shawl, cut the area you knit with waste yarn one or two rows before you changed to the proper yarn, thread some yarn through the loops in the first round of the shawl and then frog the stitches done in waste yarn.

     I prefer to knit using the magic loop method from the get go, some people prefer to start with dpn's and then change to circular needles, other people use two circulars...Do what works best for you.

     To avoid ladders I knit the first three or so stitches on the needles and pull on the yarn after knitting each one.  Don't worry too much about ladders - they tend to disappear after you block the shawl.

     One last tip I learned from the amazing MMario, when doing crossed stitches (1/1 cable), transfer the stitches to the right hand needle as if to k2tog, transfer them back to the left hand needle and knit one at a time through the back loop.



  1. Thanks for the cast-on information! I'm famous for casting on with waste yarn in lieu of a provisional cast-on.

    Since my yarn has yet to arrive, I have some time to practice some new techniques!