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 switching skeins???How w/out knot?
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newshound
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2002 :  6:04:17 PM  Show Profile Send newshound a Private Message
Hi everyone. I am a novice. So far I have only made dishclothes and 1 scarf. My first ambitious project is a baby blanket made with this lovely pima cotton yarn made by Schaeffer yarns called "Laurel."

My question is this... I am running out of yarn from my first skein (3 more to go and I am getting faster all the time) and the wonderful lady at the yarn shop told me "a knot in your knitting is like a stone in your shoe." She is on vacation and the shop is closed. I am self taught, but so far, I can't figure out the best way to transition. I mean, I don't want a stone in my shoe! :-)
Thanks,
Alice

Kathe
Chatty Knitter

USA
181 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2002 :  9:19:30 PM  Show Profile Send Kathe a Private Message
Hi Alice,

One of the ways I add new yarn is leave a 6" tail with the old yarn and a 6" tail with the new yarn, work a st using both yarns and leaving the tails hanging. Later, weave the tails in. I learned this trick from EZ's "Knitting Without Tears" and it works well. You will never notice that one st done with two strands unless it's a super bulky yarn and you won't waste yarn by always starting a new skein at the beginning of a row.

HTH, Kathe

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pat@watt.com
New Pal

1 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2002 :  9:21:04 PM  Show Profile Send pat@watt.com a Private Message
There are several different ways of switching from one skein to another, and which one you use depends on the characteristics of the yarn and the kind of work.

My favorite, if there is some kind of texture to hide it, is just to work with two strands (one old and one new) for about three stitches, then drop the old one and keep on going with the new.

You can also just wrap one yarn loosely aroung another (like for a color change in intarsia) and work the ends in as duplicate stitch after the project is finished.

If you can arrange it, it's very easy to do a knotless transition at the end of a row - just drop one and start with the next one. Most of the books (such as Maggie Righetti's) will tell you this is the preferred way, but I do a lot of knitting in the round, so that doesn't help me much.

With some yarns, you can untwist about two inches from each ball, and then twist them back together as one continuous filament. That gives good results, but not every yarn can be untwisted, and some (especially blends with silk) are too fragile - they will pull apart if you untwist them.

If all else fails, tie a knot loosely. You can untie it when you finish the project and work the ends in carefully with no one the wiser.

I think your teacher is being unnecessarily critical of a newcomer - not to say unkind. It is not unusual to get even a high quality yarn with a small knot or slub as you work along a skein. When you encounter one, just make sure you shift the knot to the back of the work, but don't get all excited about it. If the yarn comes like that from the manufacturer you certainly don't have to apologize for an occasional small knot. The important thing with knitting is not to stress out about it. The whole purpose is to RELAX!
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clariestar
Warming Up

USA
95 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2002 :  11:29:49 PM  Show Profile Send clariestar a Private Message
I agree with Pat, if there is a small knot, it is not going to amke any difference, and who's to know, anyway? I always use weaver's knote when joining yarn for things like baby blankets, that get an incredible amount of wear and tear, and need all the reinforcement they can get.

That being said, in a few projects or so, you will get to where you don't make any knots, like if you're using all wool yarn, when you can do a wet splice (aka spit weld) the frayed ends of the balls of yarn together. Very fun, and very satisfying!

Basically, to paraphrase Duke Ellington "if it looks good, than it is good"

Knit the world together, one stitch at a time.
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newshound
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  04:46:55 AM  Show Profile Send newshound a Private Message
Thank you everyone. I think I will start working with the new yarn since I am almost out of the first skein...although, since this is a baby blanket, a knot might be a good idea...hmmm. Well,I have time to think about it today. Thanks again.
Alice

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RoseByAny
Permanent Resident

USA
12598 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  06:51:15 AM  Show Profile  Visit RoseByAny's Homepage Send RoseByAny a Private Message
Even on socks and the like, I vote for doing a few stitches of both yarns - I can't tell at all, and it seems firm. I do about four stitches of both yarns together. For a while, I was twisting the yarns, but they seemed to come untwisted so easily! Then when I was re-reading for the 19millionth time "Knitting Without Tears" by EZ I saw her suggestion to knit with both. I tried it and it worked (like I didn't know the woman was brilliant!)

"Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color. Choosing your socks by their character makes no sense, and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable."
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Emaruottolo
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
472 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  08:03:49 AM  Show Profile Send Emaruottolo a Private Message
You got me, what's a weaver's knote?
TIA,
Elisa

"Happiness is not the destination, but the road traveled."
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clariestar
Warming Up

USA
95 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  08:43:21 AM  Show Profile Send clariestar a Private Message
The instructions are at home, and I'm about to start work--I'll post the instructions tonight when I get home

Clare

P.S. It's 0845 PDT right now

Knit the world together, one stitch at a time.
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fmarrs
Guardian angel

USA
9776 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  1:01:59 PM  Show Profile Send fmarrs a Private Message
I know how to do many techniques of joining and use them in various situations, my favorite is to separate the plies and wind them together. Another methos is to thread the end of the new yarn on a needle and weave it up and down along the old yarn for several inches, then just knit them together. It will pull out if you try it but does not pull out after it is knitted.

I have a comment on using knots in knitting. I started tying my yarns together witha square knot when one of my granchildren had a great time locating the joins and unraveling them. I now knot all the joins in the children's sweaters I make and they really are not noticable, I then work the ends in with a needle or crochet hook.

I guess the moral of the story is "don't knot any yarns when you are making a gift for the yarn shop owner". Other than that do it any way you wish.

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CatherineM
Permanent Resident

USA
3363 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  1:51:41 PM  Show Profile  Visit CatherineM's Homepage Send CatherineM a Private Message
My philosophy on To Knot or Not - if I can hide the knot in a seam, I'll tie a knot, because that way I know that sucker is not going to work loose during machine washings, etc. If I can't, I do the "carry along for a few stitches" thing, but I still try to put it in an inconspicuous place, because it can be a bit lumpy with some yarns. My preference is to end a skein at the end of a row on flat knitting (like a piece of a sweater) tie a nice firm square knot on the purl/wrong side when adding the new skein, and get on with it. I do weave the ends in later, and between the proximity to the seam and the woven ends, the knot virtually disappears, especially when nestled between a couple of purl stitches. I don't care what the knitting shop owner says, if it's an item that is destined for machine washing the more firmly you join the skeins the better, and a square knot with woven in ends isn't likely to go anywhere. Just my not so humble opinion....

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Dot
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
350 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  4:36:00 PM  Show Profile Send Dot a Private Message
Fran and CatherineM, I'm so heartened by your responses to this question. In my eight months of knitting I've tried various techniques for joining a new ball of yarn. I've not always been pleased with the the old ball/new ball parallel as it seems obvious with some yarns. I used the unravel and "splice" technique once with a yarn that seemed receptive to that. A scarf I wore a good bit last winter and so far, so good. But I like knots! As you said, Catherine, when they fall on a seam it seems (no pun intended) fine. Nothing's worked its way out yet. And I've even used knots successfully on scarves. I always join balls at the beginning of a row and somehow I've been able to weave in those loose ends in a way that buries the knot in the work and it's not a bit evident and doesn't pop out. I expect I'll tie a knot that I'll regret one day, but so far it's worked well for me and I feel confident my work is going to stay together. I've been wondering if this is just beginner's luck but I'm feeling better reading your insights.



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newshound
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  4:45:04 PM  Show Profile Send newshound a Private Message
I will be knotting my knitting momentarily!! :-)
Alice

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CatherineM
Permanent Resident

USA
3363 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2002 :  5:13:45 PM  Show Profile  Visit CatherineM's Homepage Send CatherineM a Private Message
If it's something for a baby, which is going to get washed often, chewed on, dragged on the ground, and picked at with fretful fingers while dozing off to sleep, I totally endorse knotting your knitting! Knot away, and feel more confident that it'll hold together and be loved and last for a long time, which is the point of the whole exercise!

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liebekatja
Chatty Knitter

USA
262 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2002 :  4:41:54 PM  Show Profile Send liebekatja a Private Message
Alice,

I freaked out when I read what your LYS owner said to you-- I've been using knots in my knitting from day one, and I don't mind them one bit! I used to use square knots, but then I made an intarsia sweater with Inca Alpaca from Classic Elite and the yarns were too slippery so now I use something called a sheet bend that holds the yarns better. There's a picture here (why not share knot resources, right?) http://www.scouts.asn.au/knots_pi.html#sheet

I like using knots. I knot wherever I am (in the middle of a row, whatever), and figure that if I need to, I can always pull the knot later to make it sit better in the knitting. I like the extra security of knots and I've never felt they were uncomfortable. I almost would rather have one little knot than 6 inches of ends woven into my knitting. If knots are flaws, I don't feel that my knitting needs to be flawless-- if I were looking for perfection, I would just buy a sweater. But then, that's just my .

Katie

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Helen
Chatty Knitter

USA
103 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2002 :  8:02:12 PM  Show Profile Send Helen a Private Message
Katie,
Thanks for the knot page. I was never in Scouts so I never learned to tie knots except for sewing! I am going to print the page and keep it in my tool box. You never know when you will need a good knot. Thanks again, Helen

I love strings
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fmarrs
Guardian angel

USA
9776 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2002 :  8:40:53 PM  Show Profile Send fmarrs a Private Message
As long as we are talking knots, do any of you use the surgeons knot? It is so simple but eliminates the need to hold the knot in place with a finger for the second wrap. I use it for all my package wraping etc.

You start the same way as usual but instead of pulling it tight, wrap the thread, ribbbon, yarn, etc around a second time. then finish the knot.

That's confusing, let me try to say it again. Cross your ties, then wrap one around the other once, then again, and snug down. It will stay in place giving you time to tie a bow or knot it again.

Fran

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CatherineM
Permanent Resident

USA
3363 Posts

Posted - 08/26/2002 :  03:06:44 AM  Show Profile  Visit CatherineM's Homepage Send CatherineM a Private Message
Knotting Knitters, unite! I've never understood why knots are a no-no for many knitting instructors, especially if something is going to get machine washed. Some yarns, especially more slippery ones, just don't work well with the other joining methods, the joins DO work loose over time - I've had it happen and that's what made me a born-again knotter. This ties to (no pun intended) a different thread about bossy knitting authors and the "RULES!" - we need to let our personal preferences and common sense drive our knitting, not somebody else's carved-in-stone policies. Thanks for the knot page! I used to know how to do all of those knots (daughter of a sailor, mother of a Cub Scout) but I've forgotten most of them and have fallen back on my tried-and-true square knot. I'll have to work on the others.



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newshound
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 08/27/2002 :  7:40:42 PM  Show Profile Send newshound a Private Message
Well, I saw the wonderful (and I really mean this!!) shop owner and told her about our knotty discussion on the forums and told her my reasons for using a knot. She still likes me! ;-) But she did show me the same techniques described in the other posts for when one may not want to knot.

Now, I am just looking forward to her post labor day, everything in the store sale!

Thanks for the knot link also. I will check it out.

Alice

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AJ Wisch
Chatty Knitter

USA
296 Posts

Posted - 08/29/2002 :  09:42:32 AM  Show Profile Send AJ Wisch a Private Message
Add me to the list of unrepentant knotter knitters! My favorite knot is the surgeon's knot, and I use it wherever I need to add another yarn. Then I carry one of the ends along in back until it runs out, then the next time it comes around, I carry the remaining end. That way I don't have to do much weaving in back when I am finished. The finishing-up is always my downfall, so I try to eliminate as many of those extra steps as I can.

AJ

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Kristin
Seriously Hooked

USA
606 Posts

Posted - 08/29/2002 :  10:48:32 AM  Show Profile Send Kristin a Private Message
I also like to use knots. Especially in children's sweaters or items that are acryllic/machine washable. I try to make it to the end of a row and just do the switch on the selvedge so I don't have to wory about a knot showing on the back. I've never had a knot come undone (especially after blocking "sets" it in place).

If I'm using fine yarn or making a reversible item (like a scarf), then I'll just knit a few stitches with both yarns and weave in the ends. Otherwise, I'm a "knotty knitter" (or is that supposed to be "naughty" instead of "knotty"?)

--Kristin

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