WORK IN PROGRESS
In Brother knitting one of the issues encountered when combining fair isle patterning with short rows is that if the fair isle pattern is to be maintained, one must hand-select needles to the proper position prior to knitting across needles newly returned to work.
The short row method here is a modified version of that used in the “wisteria” post, with the addition of needles regularly left out of work.
Analyzing what is happening in fabrics in this group: the working repeats need not be symmetrical, but for the purposes of beginning to understand the moves required and developing an awareness of how the stitches on the needle bed behave, it is easier to begin by using hand selection that is rhythmic and consistent.
Avoiding dark colors is helpful in recognizing dropped stitches in time to pick them up.
With some exceptions, most machine knitting short row patterns are worked in two-row sequences with stitches brought out to hold opposite the carriage and into work on the carriage side.
Typically the first row of eyelets will be approximately half size, and the knitting may be stopped at the top of the piece to match that.
This chart begins to visualize a pattern composed of vertical columns with colors knit on every other needle, produced using the repeat. The arrows indicate carriage movements.
The grey cells represent needles out of work.
The blocks of black and white columns represent the colors in the FI pattern selected and relate to the A and B yarn feeders. In this exercise, preselection is kept constant to facilitate maintaining proper patterning as needles are pushed back into work. Often, after an initial number of rows, all but the first group of stitches in the pattern are brought out to hold. In my swatch, the fair isle pattern had already been established across the needle bed for several rows.
Here one would begin with the knit carriage on the right, COR.
COR: the first group is knit for an even number of rows, ending COR.
COR: a number of needles are pushed back into work on the left, FI needle position is restored with needles placed in proper positions, knit on one row on the combined groups to the left
COL: bring the first group’s needles out to hold, knit an odd number of rows, ending COR.
Repeat moves and selections until the last group of stitches is reached, knit an even number of rows, and end COL.
COL: reverse the process, moving from left to right.
This method results in threads appearing between the short rowed shapes. The first preselection row is made from left to right. End needle selection is canceled. Cast on is over a multiple of 6 stitches ie 36, with every 6th needle out of work. I began the sequence COR with 10 rows knit, returning COR, followed by 9 as the odd number of rows once the next group of needles is brought into work, and the last group worked is pushed out to hold, then reduced the even number to 8, the odd to 7 in the top half of the swatch.
Here the work is seen on the machine, on the left, COR, the needle selection for the pattern in the next group to its left is restored. On the right: after knitting to the left, the initial group of needles worked is brought out to hold before continuing to knit.
A mini version in a single color Changing the holding sequence to eliminate the long threads between held shapes, beginning once more to sort out the how-to before adding fair isle patterning: cast on 36 stitches, with every sixth out of work moving from left to right, knit several rows. To knit: each group of 5 stitches in work has a reference number, 1-6
first pattern row:
COR: Set the machine for hold, leaving only group 1 in work
COR: knit 8 rows on the first group of stitches on the right (1)
push second group (2) into work and knit 8 rows, returning to COR
COR: push third group (3) into work and knit one row to the left
COL: push group (1) on its right out to hold, knit 7 rows across the remaining 10 stitches, returning to COR
COR: bring a new group on left into work, knit one row to the left
COL: bring the group to its far right out of work, repeat the process across the row
when the second to last 2 groups on left (6 and 7) are reached, knit 8 rows on both, returning to COL
COL: push the second to the last group out to hold (6)
COL knit 8 rows on the last group on left (7)
COL, reverse the process repeating all selections moving from left to right for the second pattern row. Begin the process by knitting 8 rows first on the first group of five stitches on the left, which will now have been knit for 16 rows in order for the stitches to create the large eyelets that will now form.
In my swatch, I occasionally varied the odd number of rows knit between seven and 9. Even a couple of rows can make a noticeable difference depending on the color of the yarn, the tension used, and other usual suspects. Test out the idea in the swatch to help make the decision as to whether unraveling is required to keep a constant quality to the holes as the project grows, and to practice unraveling rows back to the proper location. If fair isle patterning is added, corrections become a bit more complicated.
The resulting proof of concept swatch: With the addition of the fair isle patterning: note that here, when the last set of needles was reached, they were not worked twice before reversing direction, so the edge eyelets are of a different size than those in the remainder of the row, forming smaller waves on each side. Any openwork fabric will likely be wider than that knit in stocking stitch or fair isle on the same number of needles, making it necessary to consider providing stretch in any rows knit at the bottom or the top of the planned project or using the contrast as part of the final design.
Adding hems to the above technique is also possible
The short row repeat used here is a modified version of the “fern leaf” one in the post. The sequences are different, every needle is in work.
I began by casting on 36 stitches, knitting 12 rows for the even number, and 11 for the odd, with random variations.
Results need not be symmetrical either in the length of the shapes or in the direction of the knit, but rhythmic repetition can help one understand stitch formation, other changes that follow can then be deliberately planned rather than accidents or errors, keeping notes while the work is in progress, will help reproduce effects. The knitting method, and tips: the fair isle repeat is 2 stitches wide by one row high, and the respective cells are bordered in red, it may be programmed to suit. When using a punchcard model, the card could simply be locked on any row with every other cell punched. The result will be vertical lines on every other needle, slanting in the direction in which short rowed shapes are knit.
I chose to begin my design with the first needle on the right selected to pick up the color in the B feeder and used that as the basis for adjusting selections in subsequent groups of stitches.
Electronic machines have the option of mirroring the pattern to change that, punchcard knitters can move the knitting one needle to the right or to the left to get the selection they prefer.
As additional needles are brought into work, the A and B yarn feeders selections need to be restored so as to maintain proper FI patterning.
If you have not worked with this type of technique before, it is good to start using a light color and to work in small stitch groups, not adding added patterning until later.
Attempting to visualize the movement of the stitches across the needles in work: the colored cells illustrate the movement of stitches across the needle bed as they are brought in and out of work, and the number of held rows is altered to reduce the chart’s height, does not match the directions for the test swatch that follow it exactly. The black cells represent all knit rows. 1. Cast on the desired number of stitches, in this case, 27, a multiple of 3, and knit several rows at tension appropriate for stocking stitch when using the same yarn
2. COR. Set the machine to not knit stitches brought out to the hold position.
3. Leave 6 needles (3X2, double the number in each working group) on the right in the work position, and push all the remaining stitches out to hold.
4. Knit 10 rows (an even number), ending COR.
5. Push back the first 3 needles on the left back into the work position
6. Knit one row from right to left (9 needles), end COL, and push the 3 needles on the right out to the holding position (6 needles will now be in work again).
7. Knit 9 rows (odd number) ending COR
8. Repeat steps 5-7 until you reach the last 6 stitches, knit 10 rows (even number) over these last 6 (3X2, double the number in each working group) needles, ending COL.
9. Set the machine to knit all needles out in the hold by pushing needles back or releasing the hold lever, knit 4 rows over all the needles. It is possible to vary the number depending on one’s preference, but for me, only two rows simply were not aesthetically enough.
10. Holding lever on H, reverse shaping from left to right, beginning again on 3X2=6 needles, (double the number in each working group).
Reverse the process, moving in the opposite direction, beginning with knitting an even number of rows on the first chosen group of stitches on the left.
The difference in the edging of the swatch, marked by arrows, is due to a variation in the sequence for working on the specific group of stitches. If performed as an error, it will appear as an obvious deviation if not corrected while the work is in progress. The same action may also be performed deliberately as part of the overall design.
Color changes may be made easily where the 4 rows are knit in between segments on every needle used. End with 2 rows in the first color, knit with two rows with the second color before returning to the holding sequences.
Worked on a significantly smaller scale in one color.
This far more symmetrical result than the first effort worked in the vertical stripe fair isle pattern on 40 stitches: begin with some FI patterning, end COR
COR: bring all but the first 8 needles closest to the carriage out to hold,
Proceed as described for the single color design, but this time 4 stitches are pushed into work and returned out of work rather than 3. Knit 12 rows when even numbers are required, 11 for the odd number.
Four rows of fair isle patterning are knit at the end of each repeating segment.
It is possible to work with far larger groups as well, thus providing an opportunity for adding larger fair isle patterns into the mix. Cast on 48 stitches.
In this sample various size eyelets were produced, using 12 rows, A, which did not seem to yield the degree of 3D texture I wanted. More rows were tried where larger holes appear, B. Four rows of fair isle patterning separated each row of held shapes.
To produce a more symmetrical knit, begin working short rows COR with a group of 16 (8X2) stitches on the right, knit for 20 rows as the even number (in the range of 8X2X1.5), 19 for the odd, returning groups of 8 stitches into work knitting moves across the needle bed, ending the pattern with working 20 rows on the last 16 stitches in work on the left. Knit 4 rows restoring fair isle needle selection across the needle bed, returning COL. COL reverse shaping. Knitting all the holding sequences in the same direction for multiple rows as in any eyelet fabric will result in a knit that biases to a degree proportionate to the number of stitches and rows in each unit. The start of yet another idea: