Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Double Knitting

Double knitting has been to me and I'm sure it has been to others as well, a very difficult task. It even sounds confusing — what does "double kniting" even mean?? I've done several double knitting projects in the past and have consistently ranked them to be some of the most difficult things to knit. And in all of those cases, I followed very good instructions, step by step. But I never understood what it was that I was doing, exactly. Well, last weekend, I decided to get past that. And, like so many knitting problems, I find it to not be nearly as difficult as I was making it. As a result, I have made some serious progress with a scarf that I bought yarn for on that aformentioned trip to Cape Cod in February (Lobster Pot camel yarn, no less!). And I made a "tutorial" to post here with some tips on what I've found to be helpful and a (hopefully helpful) video of me doing the double knitting to show the basic concept.

(The other side is just he exact reverse of this side but I can't get it to photograph so well as all of the blue is replaced by yellow and looks VERY yellow in all of the photos)

1) Just as in normal fairisle knitting, pick a hand for each color and STICK TO IT (whenever I am teaching anyone anything in knitting, I cannot say enough times that consistency is the most important thing) — I have been using my left hand for the yellow and my right for the turquoise.

2) The left hand should knit Continental Style while the right hand knits English Style (throwing)

3) Each 2 stitches should be viewed as single stitch, with the purl (or the knit) always first and the knit (or the purl) always second

4) (This one is directly related to #3) — the stitches should alternate kpkpkp all the way across — in other words, unless you are crazy enough to try a stitch patter in combination with the double knitting, there should be no two of the same stitch type in a row

5) Purls are the opposite side from that which you are working on and knits are the side that you are looking at — in this way you will be knitting both the front and the back at the same time — purls for the "back" and knits for the "front"

6) MOST IMPORTANTLY: Bring both strands to the front to purl, even though you'll only purl one of the strands and bring both strands to the back to knit even though, again, you'll only knit one of the strands. This prevents twisting.

Good luck!

1 comment:

Doodlebug said...

My hairdresser told me about this method just after I learned to knit, and I've been too lazy to search for a tutorial. So thanks for the video tutorial, no less.

I found your blog through the Trash Pickins pool on Flickr, and I love your great door hardware finds. We had a mishmash of doorknow styles in our c. 1917 house, and I replaced our 70s-style doorknobs with vintage ones from the salvage store, and I wish I had known about the citrus stripper you used. Looks like it worked great. I boiled the knobs in a crock pot with a little detergent, and that worked well too, except I'm down a crock pot now!