machine knitting midgauge standard bulky machknit knit machine-knit patterns

Monday, March 21, 2011

Head and Shoulders Knees and Toes, Knees and Toes

Oh no. That's the kids' song. Today's post is about shortrowing heels and toes. I have a little trick for you to remember what to do.

A friend who is a little unfamiliar with short rowing wrote and said she wished there was more information on the slipper pattern as to how to do this. In case it helps someone else, here's how to short-row the heel and toe for Kris Basta's slipper pattern (mentioned in the previous post).

Set the carriage to hold. I use the COLORADO abbreviation to help myself remember what to do. (C standing for carriage side and O standing for opposite side of the carriage.) I had to come up with a mnemonic because I tend to daydream when I knit. Kinda lame, but it works for me. You do the shortrowing carriage side on the way in, making the heel or toe smaller and you do your shaping opposite the carriage on the way out. Remember to put a claw wt each side right where you are short rowing and keep moving them as more needles get put into hold so that the stitches stay firmly in the hooks.

So, you have 27 stitches and the carriage is on the right, you've finished your cuff. Put the end needle closest to carriage in hold, knit across. Put the next end needle closest to the carriage in hold, knit across. (Don't need to wrap anything.) Continue doing this until there are 11 stitches still in work in the center and you have knit across. Now do the Opposite side of the carriage into work, one needle opposite the carriage in the center. Knit across. Put the end needle in the center opposite the carriage into work, knit across. Continue in this manner until all needles are back into work and then do the next section of the slipper. (After the heel you 'll be doing the sole of the foot and after the toe you'll be doing the instep.)

To put needles into work, you can usually just push the needle in so that just the latch and hook of the needle show. But you don't want to drop these stitches because they're really hard to pick up. If you're unsure, just use the one-eyed tool to put the stitch back into work. (Takes a little longer, but less risk of losing it.) I can just push the needle in to make it knit on all my machines except for the little manual plastic Brother 350. The needles have to be all the way back to B position to be in work. No lee-way.

There are more elegant ways of shortrowing heels and toes for socks, but since your stitches get obliterated in the felting process in this slipper pattern, this is a fine way to do it. And easy. Check out how smooth my toes and heels look in the previous post.

Hope I helped someone. Will become automatic and fast if you do it enough times.