A random slip stitch

During my early morning surfing I recently came across a pattern knit as fair isle that I thought might work well in slip stitch

the repeat

the first sample knit side

its purl side, showing the typical slip “floats”

The light color is a 2/8 wool, the green a rayon/nylon blend, thinner in weight; the rayon flattened considerably after steaming (something to consider if maximum texture is the desired aim); the first wide band of green is 32 rows high (full repeat), the narrower stripes occur with changes every 16 rows. Slip stitch striping can vary a pattern greatly, sometimes more successfully than others. My sample was knit on a 910, using color reverse. In the first repeat chart the white squares are intended to be what knits, the dark grey the slipped areas (Passap use same repeat, tech 129, each black square is a slipped stitch with lock set to LX rather than KX). This repeat is too wide as is for use on a punchcard, but were it usable, all but the dark squares would be punched.

Obvious color changes may be every 32 rows, every 16, every 8, every 4, 2 followed by 6, and more. The pattern may also be knit with same color rotation, but beginning striping sequences on a different row. The purl side of this particular pattern helps make it easy to track location of color changes, but with many slip patterns the same may not be so obvious, and good note keeping of sequences and starting rows for the design can be a time saver when one wants to reproduce particular pleasing or successful “random” segments.

more variations

the top section here begins with first design row KC–>

these are done with beginning the pattern on row 2, KC<–

swatch is not pressed, resulting in more pronounced texture

Re_editing the repeat can help change/ plan the areas for solid color blocks to occur on the knit side. Slipped stitches become elongated ones on the front, knit side of the fabric, and the color they assume has to do with the last row knit before the needles with that color yarn. If a color changer is in use, the repeats must be an even rows in height. The repeat below is a variation of the one above. The slipped stitches are numbered, with the assumption that in this case the fabric will be all one color, or with changes at the start and end of each repeat (now 16 rows)

Below are some of the options for color changes, with slip stitch areas renumbered as any of the colors create knit stitches on the face of the fabric, bar at bottom of chart indicates starting color prior to first needle selection row toward color changer. Only 2 colors are in use in the actual knitting, the other color blocks in slipped areas are to help visualize what stitches are being slipped and for how many rows, in each color

Personal fabric and surface preferences may vary greatly between individuals. The swatch below shows variations of above, including some dropped stitches that were “missed”

My personal preference is for the top of the swatch, where the difference in yarn weight also results in an interesting dimensional effect

a couple of the many sources on this particular stitch type

A bit of fair isle

Fair isle accessories, scarves in particular, can be problematic. I tend to make most of my scarves in the 64-72 inch length after blocking, lining them would result in a very heavy scarf. Knit has a tendency to curl to the purl side in length, and toward the knit top and bottom. Rayon chenille is a customer favorite, knitting it double bed in any DBJ variant is nearly impossible on my E 6000 because of shedding and electronic eye reading errors (I would consider ladder DBJ), and I was left with finding a short float pattern that might look acceptable on its reverse, and lie flat. Weaving draft charts can be a great source for repeats for geometric FI knitting. The pattern used below is an adaptation of one. The first swatch (1) looked fine. The long one followed it. When I ironed it however, I noticed not only a missing black square or 2 in my mylar repeat (hidden by the fuzz of the chenille in the first swatch), but how lovely to have a totally curved, far longer edge (if only that was what I wanted)! On analyzing the possible cause I noticed the repeat had many more stitches knit in the chenille than the wool along that edge. Back to the drawing board: the repeat was sorted out using high contrast, smooth yarns (3 and 4), and the pattern was adjusted to a different location on the needle bed.

Then, I thought I might introduce a border. The chenille is thicker than the wool, so any hem or stocking stitch edge was too wide. I would have preferred to chain behind the knit to help flatten the bottom and top edges, and ran into yarn breakage galore. The final piece was made using 1X1 FI in the chenille “solid” color stripe to keep a balanced width and fabric thickness, and cast on and bound off edges were rehung and “bound off” again, to help cut down on their rolling toward the knit. The finished scarf measures 8″X69″, both knit and purl sides are shown below, side edge lengths now match.

Assuming one uses a crochet cast on and binds off around gate pegs at the top, a chain is created at both ends, akin to that created in crochet, and one can idetntify a front loop, a back loop, and the whole chain. Any of the 3 may be “rehung” onto the KM, and the options are to knit a row and bind off again, or simply bind off again, for different looks that start to emulate single crochet a bit and can help stabilize edges or decorate them.It is helpful to keep notes as to sequence used and which side is facing with each re hanging. ¬†Audrey Palmer at one point authored the Empisal book of linked edgings ISBN 0969485905. Intended for use with the empisal (later = Studio) linker, there are lots of interesting uses for combinations of essentially find off techniques, and some resurfaced when she published her books on knit weaving.

the same pattern knit on Passap, using tech 129 and 138; there is noticeable difference in width and openness of fabric with yarn weight change, and at top with tucking for twice as many rows

a scarf knit in pattern, using tech 138, double bed on Passap KM; light weight and drape allow it to be wrapped and worn in multiple ways; knit in 16/2 cotton, measures 11 X 76 inches partially blocked