Posts Tagged ‘prevent ladders when knitting cables’
When I was working on a cable knit hat for my brother-in-law for this Christmas I was pleased that I found a way to defeat the dreaded laddering one can get when switching to purl stitches after knitting a cable. I looked on the web for solutions but while what I found were good, they didn’t cut it for me. http://techknitting.blogspot.com/ is brilliant for so many things but I didn’t like the answers.
The two-part solution is pretty easy.
Part one is that when you finish the last knit stitch before doing a purl be sure you pull the knit stitch tight. This will reduce the extra yarn that can end up in a ladder next to the cable. You have to be mindful to do this each time.
Part two: As you are knit stitching across a cable set you will find that the last loop you are going to knit in in the set is pretty loose. Knit it, then when you go to purl the next stitch you will probably see a big ladder forming. Too much yarn in there! So what you do is this: with your working needle pull that un-worked loop on the left needle a bit to pull the ladder yarn up into the loop. Purl the stitch and move it off the left needle.
Now, be careful not to pull your needles apart too much or you will defeat the solution. Next, you probably have another purl stitch coming. If so, or even if not, again pull some of that extra yarn from the last purl you did into the next loop before you purl it. What you are doing is redistributing the wealth of yarn that was ending up as ladders. If you have another purl or knit coming, do the same, but pull less yarn across. With practice these corrections will look nice.
You can also do this if you look back across your recently stitched row. Check for ladders you missed on this round or row and use a third needle to move the extra yarn out of the ladders and into the surrounding stitches.
This technique is pretty easy and doesn’t require any funny stitches. I tried twisting the purl stitches after a cable but that didn’t help enough. You will find other suggestions on the web, but this is the simplest that I’ve come up with and very effective. I hope it works for you.
- The Secret of Correct Yarn-overs in Portuguese Knitting (knitforbrains.net)
- Knitting Backwards Without Twisting Stitches (knitforbrains.net)
- Knit A Really Fast Scarf for a Christmas Gift (knitforbrains.net)
- Better Short Row Ideas (knitforbrains.net)