Loose Ends

Loose Ends

the creative impulse gone awry

Monday, July 28, 2014

Crazy Easy Tutorial

So, let's talk about that last row in the Crazy Easy Cowl, because, well, it tends to trip people up.  I wrote it as clearly as I could, but you know, sometimes things are just said a bit easier with photos.

The idea behind the "drop and cast-off" is that when you are sewing the ends together, if you use mattress stitch (as I do) it is exceedingly helpful if you have the same number of stitches on both sides.  When you are doing all of this stitch dropping, you are losing stitches to sew to the cast on edge of your cowl - ugh.  If we drop the stitch and then pick a bit of it up and cast that off, there ends up being a stitch that you can use when you are sewing.

My hope was to make the sewing more straightforward and I ended up making the last row a pain in the butt.  At least, it seems like a big confusing pain in the butt until you see photo-proof of how not painful it is. 

So let's start when you need to do your first "drop and cast off"  You should have one stitch on your right hand needle (from the casting off you have done previously) and you'll have many stitches on your left hand needle.

 Now you're going to push that first stitch on your left hand needle off of the needle and unless your yarn is super slippery it's just going to sit there and wait for you to do something:

Hello, little stitch!  Now you pull apart your needles and tease apart the knitted fabric until you drop that stitch down a few rows -- don't go crazy and drop the stitches down all the way to the beginning (as tempting as that is) you'll want the fabric to be intact for sewing it together and THEN you can drop the stitches.  So just a couple of rows, like this:

Now your target is that top strand of yarn -- you're going to slip your left hand needle right under that strand of yarn:
Front to back is easiest, so go for it!  Next you're going to knit that little strand of yarn.  Knit it?  Yup, you just stick your right hand needle into that enormous hole, wrap your yarn around it and pull it through -- like knitting a huge yarn over.... which is kind of what that is.

Now, you'll have two stitches on your right hand needle - pull the farthest over the closest and you'll have completed one "drop and cast off".

Keep going, repeating these steps each time the pattern tells you to "drop and cast off" a stitch and that's it!

So, have you found a great yarn in your stash to use for the KAL?  This is such a simple and fast little cowl and looks great in almost any yarn -- they would make great holiday gifts! 

Just a few more days until we cast on!

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