|[ Wee Aran Project Index ]||[ Esther's Knitting Page ]|
This is like eating potato chips!
I measured a sleeve and it is exactly 3.5" across at the top, so my guessing at yarn and needles and gauges is working.
All right. I will use my finished sleeve to plot the body.
The wee aran cable (WAC) measures 1.5" across. I want to put three of these down the front, and 3 down the back. The ones on each sleeve will continue up over the shoulders to the neck. Simple plan, but this is a little sweater and I don't want it too busy.
6 sts of Double Seed Stitch (DSS) measures 1.25" on my sleeve. I will use this to separate the cables.
So...if we look at the front and imagine the stitch patterns side by
side, we can plot the finished width of the sweater by adding them all
DSS - WAC - DSS - WAC - DSS - WAC - DSS
1.25 + 1.5 + 1.25 + 1.5 + 1.25 + 1.5 + 1.25 = 9.5" + the back (the same) = 19".
Normally I would add in sts to get to 20", but my experience with superwash is that it stretches after it is washed, so I will not worry about that extra inch as I predict it will appear after the blocking.
Cast on 100% K, as per EZ's formula for a percentage sweater (this wee one has no waist so we won't put on fewer sts) on your smaller needles...I will put 100 sts on a size 4 circular 16" long needle and knit an inch of ribbing to match the cuffs.
PLANNING FOR THE BODY
I know what stitches I want and where they are going to go...now I need to make sure I increase enough sts to get me to that first round and have it all work out. If I added in the extra sts I will need for the cable crossings as I did for the sleeve, I will add in 4 sts for EACH cable...the cable takes up 6 spots, so
6 x 4 = 24 extra sts + 100 cast on = 124 sts total.
But wait: let's see if the sts will work out evenly. DSS needs to happen in groups of 4 + 2, so each section needs to be divisible by that. but wait...the side sections of DSS add up to 12, which is not divisible by 4 + 2, so I will add 2 sts to each side section, increasing my needed count by 4 sts total.
The WAC uses 12 sts. The normal DSS sections need 6 sts.
6 x 12 (WAC) sts = 72
8 x 6 (DSS) + 4 (2 extra for each side DSS section) = 52
72 + 48 = 124
Perfect. (Sometimes we get lucky). So my increase round, done in purl, needs to add in 24 more sts.
With larger 16" circular needle (I am using a US # 6), increase 24 sts evenly (sort of) around. 100/24 = 4 + 4 sts leftover. I will just purl over 4 sts at the beginning of the round, and increase thereafter to the end. Count your sts and if you miscount, adjust one or two on the next round (no big deal). The magic number is 24.
TIP: When you find yourself with too many or too few sts, count how many more/less you want; put in that many markers (split ring markers or safety pins work great for this as you can put them right on the needle between 2 sts) evenly spaced (by eye...don't fuss) and every time you reach one of the markers on your first pass-by, make or lose a stitch as you need to.
MARKERS (warning...strong opinion follows)
Markers are a knitter's best friend. You should love your markers. If you don't, you don't have the right ones. Visit every yarn store you can and buy all the different kinds that you can. Make them from yarn. Collect them from the hardware store. Whatever. Keep them all safe and happy so you have them when you need them. And you need them now. You need 3 colors of markers. I like using red, green, yellow all the time. Red means stop, (beginning of the round); Green means go right across those DSS sts; Yellow means slow down for a wee cable. The markers should be put just before each stitch pattern starts. (Thanks to Elaine, my beloved Knitting Doctor, for this idea.)
START KNITTING IN PATTERN
OK...work around your first round, with great faith, total concentration, and your Wonderful Markers as follows: start with a WAC to keep the round jogs invisible. (We will shift the beginning of the round later when we get to adding the sleeves.)
WAC (12), DSS (6), WAC center front(12), DSS (6), WAC (12), DSS (14), WAC (12), DSS (6), WAC center back(12), DSS (6), WAC (12), DSS (14). = 124 sts!
OK...work the body until it is about 6". Try very hard to arrange things so you stop on the exact row of the pattern that you stopped on for the sleeves. This should mean you have an extra "XO" in the body if all goes well.
Claudia at Countrywool