Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Colour Knitting

I designed a new stranded hat pattern. On paper it looked brilliant. But, there was one teensy design complication ... the colourwork section required me to have three colours per row! Unfortunately, (or fortunately if you like to research and learn), I could not change the number of colours in the pattern. For those of you familiar with colourwork, I'm sure you can see the dilemma!

But, I'll explain anyway :-)

When I think about ircorporating colour into my knitting, I consider using intarsia, stranded, fairisle or slip stitch techniques. Using any of these methods, I can easily knit two colours per row. Being a continental knitter, I simply hold both strands of yarn in my left hand.

But what happens when I want to incorporate a third colour into a row? I just couldn't figure out how to carry and weave the yarn in at the back with three strands. What I could imagine was a big tangle and a lot of cursing!

So, I put down my test knitting and started my research. It took a lot of reading and googling, but finally I found the answer.

Thank you to the brilliance of TechKnitter (TM), a support blog for knittters! There is a trick to knitting three colours or more in the same row. You simply combine stranded work with slip stitch work! Huh! So clever! TechKnitter does a fantastic job of explaining it here.

I returned to my test knitting, and put the theory into practice. I grant you, it's a little fiddley, and you have to concentrate - remembering which stitches to slip, which ones to knit, and which yarn to carry. But it's totally doable! And did I mention it's ingenious?

Here's the end result:

Aussie Transplant Hat

Aussie Transplant Hat

Inside the Aussie Transplant Hat

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