Learn the basics of stranded colour work in this stranded knitting tutorial. You will learn how to knit with two colours and to follow colour charts. Armholes and V-necks will be easy after you learn how to cut a steek. So, if you want to learn at your own pace, this is the tutorial for you.
In addition, the companion “Introduction to stranded knitting workshop” covers the same material in a series of online meetings. You might want to take that workshop if you would like feedback on your progress, for example.
Contents of this workshop
This tutorial uses a practical project to make a miniature stranded colour work sleeveless cardigan. This tutorial guides you through the skills you will need:
Cast on for knitting stranded colour work in the round.
Hold yarn for knitting in two colours.
Knit stranded rib (also known as cartridge rib).
Read types of chart used for colour work.
Knit stranded colour work in the round using stocking stitch (knit stitches only).
Catch your floats to avoid long loops and give even tension.
Knit colour work “flat” in stocking stitch (using both knit and purl stitches).
Make decreases in a colour work pattern.
Pick up stitches along the edge of a steek.
Prepare and cut a steek.
Skills you will need before starting this tutorial
To understand this tutorial, you need to be able to:
Knit and purl.
Knit in the round using circular needles or double pointed needles.
So that you can knit this small item with circular needles, you need to use the magic loop (or travelling loop) or two circular needles.
Decrease using right-leaning (k2tog) and left-leaning (ssk or sl1 k2tog psso) decreases.
Pick up and knit stitches from the sides and top of knitting.
Let’s get started
Work through these activities to knit your own sleeveless waistcoat for a cuddly toy. You will need to download the handout for this workshop that contains the chart and pattern, as well as useful tips.
This activity may need a bit of retail therapy! Work through this web page to find out what you need to take part in the tutorial.
Start by downloading the handout for the tutorial. In it you will find the pattern for the waistcoat that you will knit, together with hints and tips on how to knit it. To make it easy to follow, it is divided into the same activities as this tutorial.
Instructions for this activity are on page 6 of the handout. You do not need to swatch for this project because its size does not matter. Instead, you can treat the entire project as a swatch to practice. Then make another one if you want to have a “showcase” to show others.
In this activity you will learn how to catch (trap) floats when you are knitting on the public side of stranded colour work. Catching floats helps maintain an even tension. Shorter floats are also less likely to catch in fingers.
The instructions for this activity are on page 9 and 10 of the handout.
Not all stranded colour work projects are knit in the round, and even those that are sometimes have elements that have to be worked “flat” (backwards and forwards).
Knitting on the private site of the fabric differs in how you handle floats and, of course, managing your yarn is subtly different when you are using purl stitches. This activity gives you practice in working on the private site of stranded colour work.
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