“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with short rows 2

Some previous posts exploring hand techniques that might be considered to fall in this family of stitches:
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: tuck lace trims and fabrics 1
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: tuck lace trims or fabrics 2
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with “chains”
Search for “wisteria”
“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with short rows 1, June 2017 began to explore some of the fabrics presented in this category in a Portuguese language publication I do not speak or read the language, so my swatches are best guess efforts at producing similar knits. Attempting literal translation is not always helpful, for example, guidelines at the beginning of the pub:
“CLARIFICATION FOR THE EXECUTION OF THESE POINTS
A: in crochet stitches, the scheme is repeated across the entire width of the machine
B: in the “crochet ends”, braids and flowers, thread only the needles. Islands as indicated by the symbols in the scheme. Alternative: in crochet stitches of gallons and flowers thread the thread only on the needles as indicated in the diagram symbols
C: when starting to weave the car must always be on the right side unless the symbols in the scheme indicate otherwise, for example, crochet stitch #9
D: in crochet stitches count a career whenever the tip of the wire stay at the other end of the machine
E: the tension must be adjusted according to the stitch and thickness of the thread to be used, in general voltages 1-3 are used.”
Some familiarity with larger-scale patterns in this family can help visually with duplicating them independent of the written original language directions.
These fabrics share common hand technique movements across rows, singly, or in pairs. Similar structures are not presented in numerical order in the pub but will be here.
The yarn choice makes a critical difference both in managing the knitting and in how blocking, or not, affects the finished fabric. The knit carriage travels many times across each stitch as the technique is worked, with possibly pilling, so softly spun yarns should be avoided.
Clean the machine of any leftover fibers, while avoiding over-oiling which may leave dark streaks in the finished product.
Cast-ons and bind-offs need to be very loose to compensate for the fact that the completed knit will have considerable sideways stretch. Chain cast on 2 in work, 2 out of work, end with 2 needles in work
bring all stitches out to hold except for the first 2 stitches on the right
COR knit 8 rows
push adjacent pair of needles away from the carriage into work position, knit a row to left
COL bring previously knit pair of needles out to hold
knit 7 rows, end COR
bring adjacent pair of needles opposite carriage into work, knit a row to left, end COL
COL when the last pair of needles is returned to work knit 8 rows
reverse shaping: bring the second pair of needles on left into work, knit a row, push the first pair of needles out to hold, continue the process for the desired length
The yarn used is a 6X18 rayon, a “no memory” yarn that changes considerably with pressing. The arrows mark an operator error in tracking the sequence, top and bottom edges are obviously narrower than the resulting mesh.  Number 11 is a close relative but worked on every other needle The rayon used in the previous sample, and a 2/8 wool, were less successful than a 2/11 acrylic in knitting the swatch. The stitches need to be as tight as possible while also needing to be able to knit off properly
make a very loose chain cast-on on an even number of needles, then drop every other chain, taking every other needle completely out of work, and ending with a needle in work
bring all stitches out to hold except for the first stitch on the right
I believe the directions are given for knitting only 2 passes, I preferred the look with the count doubled to 4, so, COR knit 4 rows
push adjacent needle away from the carriage into work position, knit a row to left
COL bring previously knit pair of needles out to hold
knit 3 rows, end COR
bring adjacent pair of needles opposite carriage into work, knit a row to left, end COL, knit 3 rows
COL when the last pair of needles is returned to work knit 4 rows, continue with
reverse shaping: bring the second pair of needles on left into work, knit a row, push the first needles out to hold, continue the process for the desired length
In the top part of the swatch I knit 8 rows at starting and ending sequences, feeling the sides were tight, 6 may be the best answer
bing off very loosely after the last stitch is worked for 4 rows
The same directions apply in this instance, the first sample worked with no needles out of work I added 3 chains between cast-on and bound-off stitches, making for a better top and bottom edge. The difference in width is highlighted on the bottom right, where I missed doing so between two stitches. At the end of each row, prior to reversing direction, I knit 6 rows rather than 4, end with 4 rows only on the last needle prior to binding off. The swatch was not steamed or pressed.
This knit begins on every needle I cast on chaining over 2 needles, followed by two extra chains where the ladder is expected, cast-off also with two extra chains in ladder spaces. The knit sequence is similar to the previous swatch, but needles are now moved in pairs
COR work first 2 stitches for 2 rows
push two needles on left into work, knit one row to left
COL *push first 2 stitches to hold, knit one row to the right
COR bring next two stitches on the left into work, knit one row to left
COL push previous 2 stitches to hold, knit one row to the right**
bring 2 stitches on left into work knit one row to left,
repeat across the row
when the last pair of stitches are left, COL knit two rows on them, and reverse shaping. Ending each sequence with two knit rows will produce fairly straight sides, knitting four rows on end stitches, except prior to binding off,  may echo the movement of the in-between spaces and make the ladders at the sides more visible Eliminating those ladders or floats, here eyelets are created where stitches are held for two rows. Care needs to be taken if stitches are dropped or other patterning errors are made in order to retain the correct pattern. Cast on and bind in this instance were executed with single chains added in between those on needles in work.
Version 1:
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
repeat until there are 2 needles left in work, knit 2 rows
reverse shaping
end with 2 rows knit on the last pair of stitches before binding off
Version 2 adds 2 rows knit on every needle between holding pattern reversals, the fabric grows in length far more quickly
Cast on from left to right on every needle
COR knit 2 rows, bring all needles except for the first 2 on the carriage side out to hold
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
COR bring one needle on left into work, knit 1 row
COL bring one needle out to hold opposite carriage, knit one row
repeat until there are 2 needles left in work, knit 2 rows, end COL
COL push remaining needles into work, knit 2 rows on all needles
COL bring all needles except the first 2 on the left into work, knit 2 rows
reverse shaping, ending with 2 knit rows on the far right
COR push all needles into work, knit 2 rows on all needles
COR bring all needles out to hold except for the first 2 on the right
repeat all
end with 2 rows knit on the last pair of stitches before binding off

chain cast on 2 in work, 2 out of work, end with 2 needles in work
worked in 2 pairs, 4 needles at a time
COR knit 6 rows on the first two pairs of stitches on the right push pair of needles on the left into work knit one row push first 2 of needles out to hold knit 5 rows CORpush next pair on left into work, knit one row  push the third group  on  its right into hold position, knit 5 rows across remaining  4stitches bring a new group on left into work, knit one row
bring the pair to the far right out of work
repeat  process across row
when  the last pair of needles on the left is pushed back into work, knit one row
COL knit 10 rows, bring the third pair of needles into work, knit one rowPush the first pair of needles out to work, knit 5 rows, continue with reverse shaping.
If the pattern is to end on the right (or left), knit 6 rows on the last 4 stitches and stop, otherwise when the opposite side position is reached, knit 10 more rows before reversing and continuing in the pattern.
Tracking rows worked: 7 ladders are created in each space, 12 on each end. Depending on yarn and stitch size watch to see that even tension is maintained particularly on the first 2 stitches worked on each side.
The swatch is shown before and after some light pressing, the arrow marks some looser stitches on the side edge.

Latch tool cast on from left to right, chaining 4  in no needle, future ladder spaces
COR with the first 2 needles in work, knit 2 rows
COR bring the first needle on left into work, knit 1 row to the left on three stitches
COL bring the first needle of the previous pair on the right out to hold, knit one row to the right on two stitches
COR bring the closest needle on the left into work, knit 1 row on three stitches
COL bring the second needle of the previous pair on the right out to hold, knit one row on two stitches
repeat working on 3, then 2 stitch sequences until there are only 2 needles left in work, end COL
COL knit two rows, begin  reverse shaping by putting one needle into work on the right, knit one row on three needles
COR bring the first stitch on the far left out to work, knit one row on 2 needles
continue reverse shaping, ending with 2 needles in work on the far right
COR knit two rows on 2 stitches, repeat and continue the process until 2 stitches are left in work on the left, and reverse again
end fabric with 2 rows knit on last 2 stitches in work
latch tool bind off with chaining X 4 in ladder spaces
keep an eye on sequences, the floats are created in series of three, with experience knitting similar patterns, errors become easy to spot during is knitting Shell shapes: #4 and # 20 directions are given in the 2017 blog post Some of the trims in this pub may be far more easily and quickly executed using tuck stitches.

Ribber trims 3: one trim, four variations

I found this on a random sheet tucked away with references from some seminar or other eons ago, its origin is not known to me
I like to chart out my repeats and plans for executing fabrics, along with ideas for possibly varying them in ways other than suggested, this was my  beginning The sequence in photos, beginning with the cast on, 2/24 acrylic yarn,  zigzag  row with inserted ribber comb,  half-pitch  1 row is knit across all stitches to complete cast on,  knit one more row to return to the opposite side the setting is changed to full pitch, stitches are transferred between beds to match  diagrams the center needle in each group of 3 is brought out to hold for one row, knit one row to return to the other side center needles are pushed back to D position in order to be knit on return pass to the opposite side this tool makes that needle selection faster and easier when the 20 rows had been knit in pattern drop stitches on each side of center stitch transfer ribber stitches up to main bed I knit 3 rows rather than 2, to return to right side  for bind off here is the swatch, still on comb for “setting stitches”

I found the above results upon completion disappointingly wimpy, then tried the same steps in tightly twisted and slightly thicker cotton, achieved better results, but was still not happy. That set me thinking about an alternative way to produce a similar fabric with changes in needle arrangements. The full series of swatches is seen below. The yellow is knit in a 2/8 wool, the beige in the same weight cotton as the white on the right. All swatches were knit on the same tension, for the same number of rows.

The adjustments on the original pattern are as follows. At half-pitch begin as above with zig zag to left, 2 circular rows, knit back to right. Set pitch to P, transfer between beds

knit back to the opposite side, transfer each of the side stitches on the top bed onto the center needle in each group,

bring those needles out to hold for easier knitting on the next pass knit one row back to the right,  making sure stitches have knit off properly. When you have returned to the right side, set the carriage to tuck from right to left only (left tuck button), RC000loops will be formed on the center needles as they would have been formed over the needles as if holding was in use

when the 20 rows are completed the carriages will once again be on the right,  all stitches will have been knit on the previous row transfer all ribber stitches to top bed, knit 2 rows, bind off. None of my swatches were blocked other than by some tugging, particularly along the bottom edge. The spacing between stitches is narrower because ladders created by single needles left out of work are formed by yarn lengths that are shorter than those that happen when stitches are knit and then in turn dropped. The height of the swatch is also affected, and the half fisherman texture in the wool swatch, in particular, is more evident.

More variations to try in a multiple of 3+1: using either method or a DIY cast on, dropping (yellow) stitches marked with a * at the end, or transferring them to right or left and setting the main bed to tuck in one direction only. When the work is removed from the machine, stretch cast on outwards, then give each “scallop” a really good pull downwards. Steam lightly over the scallops to set them. Variations of the double bed trims may be worked on the single bed as well.

Fair isle variations

A review of links with associated hints and info:
Measuring gauge swatches, general information 
Matching patterns across sweater bodies and sleeves
Float control 
Scarf experiments
Design inspiration: binary alphabets
Adding hand techniques/ cables/ punchcard repeats
FI meets transfer lace on Brother machines 
Adding the ribber, FI on main bed Tubular machine knit fabrics: fair isle, Brother/Passap
Altered patterning using bleach discharge on knits

These are random FI samples from my collection, most from my teaching days. None of them were ever intended for use in the finished product. They were knit to illustrate some of the possibilities for the different techniques using each of the cam button combinations. Some were knit during class demos. The colors made them easily identifiable as mine, knit using a personal yarn stash. The contrast helped identify how stitches were formed.
In this swatch, marking for measuring stitches per inch is done by leaving a needle out of work. The width between the resulting ladders should be checked at various points after the swatch is treated in the way you plan to treat (block) the finished fabric. Adding a third color per row would require altering the pattern to a color-separated slip stitch one, or one may add that color with duplicate stitching. The spots in this test are colored in with a permanent fabric marker. At the height of the art to wear movement one artist, in particular, was producing limited edition knitwear by knitting the same design in black and white, and in turn over-dyeing the white for different effects in each piece in the series. Eyelets at the bottom of the swatch are tension markings for the piece. The vertical line created by end needle selection (normally used in FI to avoid separation of colors et vertical edges) is interrupted in rows that are knit in only one color. Recommended maximum width for floats is usually 5 stitches.  How much the floats droop and cause potential “problems” on the purl side depend on fiber content. Sometimes such floats are intentionally created and worn on the outside of the garment as planned design features. The longer blue floats are seen below in the areas of the ladders where only the yellow is knitting, creating a wider span of the alternate color. These repeats are very simple. They are commonly associated with card #1 and card #2 in basic factory packs supplied with knitting machines purchases. Card #2 is reproducible by using card #1 elongated X2. A reminder: if using either repeat in pieces of garments ie baby leggings, etc. take note of which yarn feeder each color is in. Even if the repeat is correct and placed properly, the surface of the knit will appear different to the eye if the color placement is reversed in alternate pieces. The repeats may be used as backgrounds for a variety of other more complex fabrics in DIY designing. Here stainless 32 gauge wire is used as the second “color”, making the piece moldable and shape-retaining.   Color may be added or “taken away” as seen in the post on bleach discharge on knits Another factory-supplied punchcard is used. Thinner yarns in lighter colors may have noticeable bleed-through of darker colors traveling behind them, as seen on the left, not an issue with the thicker wool on the right. Forgetting to set the card to advance can result in vertical lines, which may alternately be planned as a design feature. The longer floats seem manageable in these yarns, there is a bit of hooking up on the bottom right. The yarn traveling up the swatch on the right is an alternative way to mark for gauge measurements. A previous post provides some information on float control.  Varying the colors, fiber content, and considering complementary borders is worth exploring thoroughly at the swatch level, before committing to a larger piece. Truly contrasting yarn used at the bottom and top of the area to be measured for row gauge makes the process easier. As attractive and quick as single bed FI can be, keep in mind that long pieces knit in yarns with “memory” such as wool, will tend to roll to the purl side vertically even after blocking, and certainly with wearing of pieces such as scarves or shawls.  Tone on tone chenille and all rayon, with “color reverse” by switching yarn positions in feeder less effective with a flat yarn as the alternative to the chenille Using the same card:  every needle, 4.5 mm electronic machine.  Transferring stitches to every other needle, odd needles in work on one side, even-numbered needles on other using worsted weight (2 needles in the center in work side by side.   The motif is now used twice as wide with every other needle in use across the fabric width It is possible to vary designs by using the 3 functions of the card reader: locked, normal rotation, and elongation. Designs with long vertical features tend to separate at the edges where the 2 colors meet. Lining the fabric with a fusible makes the knit lose stretch, but it may be an option for stabilization, float control, and offers an opportunity for mock quilting by inserting some stuffing under floats before it is ironed on. High contrast colors are best for sorting out how stitches are formed. Embroidery alters the “step ladder” effect outlining the shapes. Hooked-up floats are not just for float control; note puckering on the knit side where they have been hung up in groups.  These swatches were worked from the bottom up, starting with positive/ negative comparison, sorting out the possible placement of the ladder with the intent of adding ladder lace details. Cancel end needle selection because of needles out of work, but bring needles into D or E position to avoid separation of colors and/ or dropped stitches at side edges.  From the bottom up, transitioning from a ladder resulting from a single NOOW (needle out of work) to 2 NOOW, hooking up floats on opposite sides, ending in “lace” pattern alone  Combined with transfer lace  Hand techniques (in this case cables) can be combined with FI. In Brother, it helps to be familiar with the pattern, as needle selection may have to be manually restored after the technique is performed to stay in the correct pattern.
With cables: some punchcard repeats
With using a sewing machine: there is a vertical, single stitch line due to end needle selection in the contrast color formed on either side of any needle(s) out of work which provides a visual guide for altering the fabric. This swatch was knit with wide NOOW spaces, then sewing machine stitching joined the contrasting vertical lines to form a 2 color “fringe” on the knit side (left) and purl side (right)Variations with fibers for exploring surface textures: wool with raffia on the bottom, fishing line on top The same swatch continued on, using 3M elastic as the second color  The same repeat in a rayon chainette and wool, followed by some felting. The rayon “bubbles” more visibly when the wool creates the wider floats  reversing color positions
The punchcard is limited to varying the vertical repeat automatically in 3 ways: locking the card, normal rotation, and double length. Repeat width is fixed. Felting can produce interesting surfaces if one yarn is capable of being felted (green), and the other not (blue). The stitches knit with the latter will create puckers/ blisters. Since the knit will shrink in both width and height, the repeats here were used at double length. Note the added drooping of the blue floats on the purl side.  A punchcard can be further manipulated by masking areas with tape. It is not a good solution for production knitting, but adequate for testing out ideas before committing to punching a full, new card. The surface blisters here are much more dramatic. The green floats do not felt as much as in the previous swatch, and are considerably wider. On the right, far side you can see some of them were latched up, creating yet another design detail.
The reverse of both swatches shows the resulting difference in relative width.  The contrast using a factory-supplied punchcard pattern with short floats, also felted. The fringe is created by ending on one side (in this case on the right) with a group of needles out of work and the outermost 2 needles in work, essentially producing a large “ladder”.  Decreases and increases on needles close to the edge of the knit were brought in and out of work to create the “zig-zag”. The two edge stitches of the ladder may be trimmed before felting. The knit side is shown on the left, the purl side on the right, no clearly visible, separate floats, its surface is fairly flat.

“Crochet” meets machine knitting techniques: working with short rows 1

Another Ravelry thread recently looked at knitting this pattern, from an old Knittax pattern book

I found this in a different manual, with a similar structure, and “English” directions  Translation of symbols used in Knittax patterns On the purl side, this creates structures that emulate crocheted shells. My first attempts at trying to knit anything like this were in thin yarn, and I had enough issues to give up for the moment. Things worked out much better when I switched to a sport weight yarn that seemed to like knitting at T 10 for stocking stitch. With NOOW set up, my sample was knit at T 9. Waste yarn and ravel cord are often a good way to start, but not always necessary, the same is true of weight. I began with a crochet cast on, every needle, multiple of 4 st + 2, then dropped the alternate pairs of needles between the first and last 2 pairs of needles in work, pulling the needles back to A position, determining the width of my “shells”
My initial experiment was an adaptation of the concept, with more needles in work than in the inspiration photo.
Working from right to left, starting with COR; the first pair of needles on carriage side in work, remaining needles away from carriage are in hold position moving toward left, the adjacent needle in the first pair in hold gets wrapped; be sure to retain proper positions for knitting and holding the first wrap completed, needles in position to continue the process is repeated X number of times. I chose to wrap X 5, which requires 10 rows of knitting, making the row counter usable to track rows in easy increments. When wraps are completed, push wrapped needle and its partner into work, knit one row make certain all the loops have knit off, wrap the first needle to their left, bring pair on the right to hold continue for your desired number of wraps return wrapped needle and its partner to work position, knit one row, wrap next single needle on left remember to bring needles to right of the pair just knit into hold repeat to end of row. Reverse process moving from left to right (in progress photo). I found a single tooth from a claw weight on the pair of stitches doing all the knitting helpful. 

Variations can include the number of needles in and out of work, yarn choices, etc. The needle arrangement to match the symbols with 3 in work, 3 out of work The same steps sequence is followed as for the first swatch, using a 2/8 wool. Summarizing the beginning series of movements starting with CORThe full series of patterns may be found in the Portuguese language booklet The illustrated needle arrangement for #4I like to begin using a chain cast on, and then dropping chains off needles out of work1: COR, leave the first needle in work, pull the remainder out to hold, knit 1 row
2: COL, bring the thread under the first needle in hold position 3: COL, knit 2 rows, repeat 1-3 5 more times, creating a total of 5 wrapped loops, ending COL
4: COL, put the needle storing the wrapped threads into work, and knit this stitch by hand twice, leave it in work
5: push the adjacent needle to its left into work, the needle on its right out to hold, knit one row, ending COL
Repeat steps 2-5The fabric shares knitting sequences with the first 2 samples Here a similar technique is used for a trim, both sides are shown  trying to imagine the process in chart format 

Online inspiration:
a youtube shawl
techniques that use holding while moving across the needle bed in a similar manner, though not necessarily producing “crochet-like” fabrics: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XR_7Ys9KIaU&t=4s
http://postila.ru/post/29275341

A follow-up post with more fabrics inspired by the Knittax pattern book

A new “leaf” lace

I am often surprised when I return to visiting past ideas and discover how long I have actually been blogging. In 2016 Vogue knitting published what appeared to me to be an interesting pattern for a leaf lace variant combining dropped stitches and lace transfers. In looking back my leaf “phase” began in 2011. Here are links to my previous posts and process at the time:https://alessandrina.com/2011/02/15/beginnings/
https://alessandrina.com/2011/02/20/in-progress/
https://alessandrina.com/2011/02/20/on-the-blocking-board/
https://alessandrina.com/2012/02/25/back-to-lace/
https://alessandrina.com/2012/02/28/more-on-those-slanting-lace-leaves/
https://alessandrina.com/2012/03/08/back-to-leaf-lace-add-rib-and-take-it-to-the-passap/
https://alessandrina.com/2012/03/20/getting-there/
https://alessandrina.com/2012/03/27/the-joys-of-lace-on-the-km/
https://alessandrina.com/2015/03/22/ladders-with-lace-making-things-work/

Below, I am sharing my WIP swatches and notes. I am presently working on some production knitwear pieces, and it is unclear when I will return to more samples of this variant.

The “new leaf” requires hand techniques, working with multiple transfer tools. Dropped stitches in hand knitting may translate to ladders in a machine knit. My first trial swatch was made on the standard KM.  Casting off and on posed interesting questions. The lines where knit stitches meet ladders, as pointed out in previous posts, can result in the knit stitches aside the ladder growing in size

I do not enjoy time-consuming hand techniques on the machine, so to speed things up I moved on to the bulky. As with any other knitting, the lengthwise sides of the knit are going to want to curl to the purl side. I deliberately worked with acrylic yarn, anticipating that blocking it would be required to attempt to get the results to stay flat. Here is the resulting swatch, as first off the KM

after pressing with steam 

A couple of days later the fabric was still lying flat, so I decided to try to chart it out for slightly different results while planning for a different turning angle and a consistent number of ladders throughout.


I began to use Excel 2008 in 2009, as well as Apple’s Pages and sometimes Numbers over time to produce my charts and illustrations. I keep learning tiny bits as time goes on. Some features may disappear in such programs or become added with upgrades. These are settings I prefer for backgrounds and borders in Excel

format

and for screen grabs or improved visibility, zoom comes in handy 

For links to some online tutorial by other authors https://alessandrina.com/2013/10/29/charting-knits-in-excel/, a search in my own blog will lead you to my own explorations over time. Simple graph paper and color pencils may be used if the software is not available to help work out proper repeats, etc. A single repeat of my leaves so far is shown in 2 segments for increased visibility, successful knitting, probably in another “killable yarn” tbd.

MK ladders, and a bit of crochet

I have recently been thinking about collars and edgings again, this time adding crochet detailing to help cut the edge curl and add interest. In a previous post, I showed an edging done in drop stitch (double bed lace). Here to simplify things, I decided to work with ladder spaces to create the fabric. If a large width of this fabric is required, multiple bands would need to be joined to achieve it, crochet is then applied in turn to the finished knit piece. Seam as you knit can make the joining nearly invisible. Using Excel, I tried to also create crochet symbols using its shapes menu. The number of rows knit in open pattern or all knit prior to binding off is at your discretion, depending on your needs and planned final product. For my sample I began knitting with COR, and to end with COR for bind off row, I chose to work with even numbered groups of rows. Consider fiber content if the intent is to permanently block as flat as possible, or not.

my chart symbols symbols_70

whole_69

needle set up, waste yarn cast on, knit for the desired length  setup_62img_4095bring one empty needle into work transfer_63img_4096knit one row, bring remaining empty needle into work plain-knit_64img_4097knit one row img_4099knit rows desired for top band img_4100transfer eon from L to the right allk-transfer_65img_4101latch tool bind off around gate pegs for all needles/stitches img_4102

img_4103do not cut yarn, lift work off the machine; turn work over (knit side facing)
chain 5, slip stitch into eyelet created by transfers, repeat across the knit, end with a slip stitch into last eyelet space detail_4121turn work over (purl side facing once again), chain 3, 2 double crochet, slip stitch into the center of chain 5 space, repeat across the knit, end with a slip stitch into last chain 5 space detail_4120unblocked trim, 2/15 acrylic yarn img_4104

img_4105detail after steaming, the trim is side leaning img_4119

img_4118

To use: rehang open stitches on every needle (or other arrangements) eliminating ladder spaces and bind off,  join to another piece of knitting, etc.

Zig Zag ladder lace 2: hand knit

I work primarily on a Mac, Maverick OS. Intwined software has had some issues operating in Mac consistently in the latest OS versions. The chart to text can be a really nice feature. The repeat, drawn here with symbols in the built in stitch library, shows errors in row 2 and 4 of the accompanying text.single repeatmistakes single

On a larger canvas, the original repeat is outlined below in red. Yellow indicates knit border stitches around ladder lace pattern repeats; row 22 is absent from the text that accompanied the larger chart.

full chart

full directionsSkitch is a free program, available for both Mac and Windows, that allows the opportunity for of highlighting or further editing a graphic. Taking the information above, here I added numbers that reflect actual repeat rows, used the arrows as a reminder of change in direction of zig zag, and the red outlines vs green indicate changes in type of knit decrease. It is easy to add as much or as little additional information as one feels helpful. There are controls for line thickness, shadows, etc.

actual repeat

JKnit is another program that may be of interest to anyone who prefers to track their projects, progress, and much more on their iPad or iPhone. The Lite version is free for both devices.

Below is an image of the hand knit swatch, unblocked, which appears three dimensional; transfer  lace has traditionally been blocked to lie flat and maximize eyelets. The fabric may be very interesting without blocking. If a slightly thicker yarn with “memory” is used, the piece may be steamed lightly, and the pattern segments will tend to shift in and out from the flat surface, whether the piece is hand or machine knit.IMG_1901

The yarn used was a “throw away” swatch testing acrylic. A very quick, light press and a bit of steam and here it is in the resulting killed, forever flattened version

IMG_1905  and it reverse side

IMG_1906

Zig Zag ladder lace 1: on knitting machine

My previous posts on combining ladders and lace: 1, 2 . The chart below, found in a random Japanese publication, started the process of my sorting out a possible “how to” on the knitting machine
bulky zig zag lace

In hand knitting, the 2  empty circles generally indicate a double yarn over. On the machine these can be simulated by working with extra empty needles. For swatching, a few rows of stocking stitch will do as a start. In a final fabric, waste yarn may be followed by ravel cord and a crochet cast on. After the crochet cast on, the chain on the needles for the extra “yarn over” location can be dropped, leaving those needles “empty”, and the pattern may begin immediately.

One of the 2 yarn overs will be created by manipulating an empty needle, the other by transferring stitches by hand as one would in lace.

If the empty needle if moved back to A, a ladder is created that is essentially a float in front of the gate pegs up to the next knit stitch. For purposes here, the result did not give me enough yarn to be able to maneuver.

The first step is to decide on the repeat between transfers, and emptying appropriately spaced needles, seen here in A position

IMG_1878

for the longer “float”: before the first row of the pattern, the empty needle is brought out to work, a row is knit, resulting in loops on those needles, that will create extra yarn slack

IMG_1882

the loop is in turn dropped

IMG_1883a tool is inserted through the loopIMG_1893

turned  clockwise for  casting on  in one direction,

IMG_1886

IMG_1895

and turned counter clockwise for casting on in the opposite. Note that in one instance the long leg of the e is in back of the knit on the purl side, in the second in front. This makes a difference on the knit side of the fabric as well.

IMG_1894

to get the look of ssk and ssp as seen in hand knitting (instead of a simple decrease),  depending on the direction you are traveling, the needle 3 stitch is moved to its right or left onto the center one to create the second “yarn over” . Both stitches are then returned  together to the needle 3 position

IMG_1879

and with the transfer and e wrap completed, one is ready for the next row of knitting. Bringing the 3 needles out to hold gives one the opportunity to check all transfers and wraps, makes the next row easier to knit

IMG_1888

the turn of the zig zag: pick up from row below for increase, instead of e wrapping for a neater turn

IMG_1889

my first swatch: 1/ ladder at start of row; 2/ shows chain moving along the knit side, emulating ssk and ssp decreases seen in hand knitting; all my e wraps were made clockwise, 3 shows the long leg of the wrap moving to front of fabric as opposed to the rear as in 5, each giving a different look to ladder’s edge; 4 indicated the pivot point for reversing the direction of the zig zagnumbered_1892below shows the results of alternating the directions of the e wraps in each section: clockwise when moving to left, counter clockwise when moving toward right. The large eyelet at the top illustrates what happens typically when an empty needle is brought back into work at the top of a ladder.

IMG_1890 (1)

Ladders may be created in any desired width. The look of the vertical knit edges becomes a matter of preference. Good note-keeping helps insure consistent results.

 

Ladders with lace, “making things work” 2

My preferred, e wrapped  1 to 3 increase

knit side

300_12purl side

300_13

The how: begin with transferring 2 side stitches onto the center one

knit row 1

1knit row 2

2

insert tool as shown

3

turn clockwise, place yarn twist on needle to left of center one

4

insert tool as shown

5

twist counter clockwise, bring twisted stitch behind float on right of center, lift twisted loop and place it onto the empty needle to right of the center

6

pick up a loop from the triple stitch below last 2 knit rows as shown, and lift it onto center stitch

7

knit 2 rows, continue in pattern according to chart

Ladders with lace, “making things work” 1

Just about 2 years ago, I had an obsession with leaf shapes in lace, and wrote a series of posts on approaches to both designing them and rendering them in knit on more than one machine. One such early post. Recent publications are reflecting the increasing interest in bulkier knits and combining  ladder “lace (created by needles remaining out of work) with shapes floating within the resulting open spaces. I thought I would address some of the issues in such fabrics, while returning to a leaf as the focus “shape”. My samples are knit on a Brother 260, using hand techniques that require only the basic set of transfer tools.

Long verticals in knit may have problems with the edge stitches separating from the rest of the knit, i.e. in FI vertical stripes. In plain knit, the edge stitches may stretch, become distorted, and may encroach on the ladder space. A series of actions taken on the edge stitches of ladders will help prevent that, here I am choosing to use a simple 1 X 1 cable cross every 2 rows to stabilize them. Having the cables coincide with the rows on which transfers are made to create the chosen shape makes tracking them easier.

my first schematic (Excel chart)

screenshot_14

symbols used

symbols2

imagining in repeat

in repeat

my first swatch

for decreasing stitches in work on right or left at the top of the chart I used a simple decrease

edge_decrease

using the “fully fashioned” option would provide a different look along that edge

ff_decrease2

For my test swatch I used a crochet cast on across 17 + 4 for single full pattern repeat, + 4 edge stitches on either side = a total of 29 stitches. To create the transition  from 1 to 3 stitches in the center of the leaf,  I  e wrapped an additional 2  empty needles

e_wrap0-2

#1 reflect the e wrapped increase just above the cast on, #2 show results of the same technique at the top of the established “leaf” pattern

e_wrap1_2

the chart repeat amended for a different start

screenshot_15the second swatch, trying a different way of adding stitches

#1 shows pattern beginning on a group of knit sitches, as opposed to a single center one for leaf

#2 shows a full “leaf” repeat as charted, red arrow points to e wrapped yarn traveling in front of the shaping

#3  red arrow indicates the same is happening with the float, while the green shows my desired twist, with stitch to front

300_92_2

Sorting it out: a third swatch, with an amended way of e wrapping. To make sampling quicker, I modified the repeat, eliminating cables, decreasing the number of stitches at the widest part of the leaf, making fewer eyelet transfers.  The results show how much the shape of the “leaf” may be varied with just a few changes. Note the twist and location of floats in relationship to stitches just above #1

e_wrap4_2

I will document the 1X3 increase method I liked best out of several trials in my next post.

If having a single pivot stitch for the repeat is not important, the chart below is amended again to accommodate that

screenshot_16

if eyelets are eliminated to create a geometric pattern and/or for the sake of speed, increases may be created on both sides beginning on row 12 of the above chart by picking up from the row below

make_one