Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Intarsia: Easier than you think.

Colour blocking is way easier than than it looks. It is way easier than doing some fancy stitch, like a cable or moss stitch. The only thing that you have to do is this: when you switch colors, cross the yarn that you are knitting with over the new colour. So that they twist and pull the two colours together. Otherwise there is a hole in the knitting. Whenever I am doing intarsia blocks, I use a stocking stitch. Knit one row, purl the next. Simple. Easy on my hands (which sometimes exhibit signs of a repetitive stress injury when I spend too much time knitting). The only really annoying thing about intarsia is that you have a WHOLE lot of ends to work in when you are done. Actually, I work them in as I go, or I get the little ends confused with the yarn I am supposed to be knitting with.

Also, most normal people would not knit this whole pattern in one long row. A normal person would knit all the squares separately, sew them together, then pick up the stitches required along the sides to do the border. I hate sewing the pieces together (they never look smooth and perfect, especially when using boucle yarn - which I love for blankets). I also hate trying to pick up stitches along the edge of a finished piece. For those two reason, I prefer to suffer the insanity of having 13 balls of yarn attached to one blanket at a time.

Also, I like working blankets on my US8 round needles. That is the perfect gauge for the boucle and the round needles make working the whole thing at once possible.

By the way, I am basically a self-taught knitter, so I am probably doing EVERYTHING the hard way. I know I have terrible technique (I no longer will knit when my grandmother is in the room, because she can't believe how bad my technique is..."if you just would hold the work this way, dear, it would be a lot easier..." easy for her to say, after 6 decades of holding her work in the European style... I tried it and nearly lost my sanity, so American style for me).

Sorry to those who are reading this and thinking what the hell is she talking about?

I don't have anyone here to talk to about knitting. Can you tell?


Catherine said...

NO way would I be able to do it that way. I would be all tied up in various balls of yarn. lol

Treggles said...

"...what the hell is she talking about?"

How did you know that that was exactly what I was thinking?

Laura said...

If it's easier than moss stitch, than I might give it a whirl. I can do moss stitch, but it makes my butt hurt. Argh. So annoying. I never thought of using boucle yarn for blankets, but I'm going to try it, it looks so nice and snuggly. Speaking of technique, I recently figured out that I've been knitting wrong the whole time. I've been knitting TBL and now when I try to knit through the front loop, it's way too tight. Then I get irritated.

kate said...

Catherine said exactly what i was going to say. I would be one giant tangle of yarn in ten minutes.

Remind me to send you a relevant picture of a time when that actually happened to me, and i was only knitting with ONE ball of yarn.

I knit 'Euro style' because that's what mom taught me. It seems to impress everybody in this country, but it is really perfectly easy.

Now you are inspiring me to break out the yarn again!

whatthef*ck said...

i have lots of thoughts and questions and I'd love to talk knitting with you. Actually I would much rather knit with you. my knitting circle has grown quite small. How great would it be if we could all knit together? I'm too tired to form coherent thoughts. Soon i need to start a new stockign and i think knowledge of intarsia would help. i was winging it on the last one and it showed. glad to hear you are knitting for the babe.

Rosepetal said...

"...what the hell is she talking about?"
I'm one of those.