QueerJoe

QueerJoe's Knitting Blog
Tilt Graph Enlarged

Stranded Knitting – QueerJoe Tips

If you’re a pro already at two-handed stranded (or Fair Isle) knitting, this may all be useless chatter to you.  Feel free to skip today’s blog.

Stranded Knitting Untangled

If, on the other hand, you find stranded knitting to be a tangled mess, today’s blog may just give you hope.

Here are my three greatest tips and techniques.

  1. Two-handed stranded knitting

    My first attempts at stranded knitting required me to keep picking up and dropping the two different colored yarns.  The two yarns were constantly being twisted and locking in floats was a pain.  I tried holding both yarns in my left hand and choosing the correct color, but that didn’t help very much.  When I learned two-handed stranded knitting my knitting life changed forever.  I’m not very good at holding the yarn in my right hand (American), but even when it’s awkward, it’s still much easier to do two-handed knitting and it gets easier and easier.Here is a bad video of me showing my two-color, stranded knitting with locking floats.


    Here, on the other hand, is a Great two-handed float locking tutorial from Knit Purl Hunter

  2. Two circular needle knitting

    This isn’t specific to stranded knitting, but I like spreading my knitting out over a long cable needle so I can see my work (and photograph it) more easily.  And there are two tips in one on this tip!

    Two Cable Needles Interchangeables

    1. When you use two circular needles always use the ends from the SAME needle to knit with.  Often, it’s recommended you use two different brands of cable needles so you always know to knit from and two the same needle.Two Cable Needles Interchangeables 01

      It doesn’t seem overly intuitive, but when you try it, it makes a lot of sense.

    2. Since I’m using an interchangeable needle set for this project, and there are only two US6 tips in my set, nothing states that I have to use the same size tips on the butt-end of my circular needle.  As long as the working tip is US6, I can use any smaller size tip on the back end of my needle.  Currently I have two cables with US 6 tips on the “front” of the cable and US4 tips on the back.  It lets me use my favorite Lykke set of interchangeables for both needles! 
  3. Technological support!

    After my blog post about photographing my graphic, converting it to PDF and using the Adobe PDF viewer to highlight it, I got two great suggestions.  KnitCompanion (app) and PDFExpert (thanks Doug and Mary-Helen!).  I decided to try KnitCompanion. After fumbling my way through a not-very-intuitive software app, I have wrangled it into working order.Knit Companion

    It allows me to import patterns from Ravelry and/or DropBox. It also lets me expand graphs and add highlight bars to show where I am in the pattern.  I’m liking it a lot and supposedly, the paid-for version is a LOT better (about $10).

Current Knitting

At this point, I have completed a little more than two repeats on the Tilt Cardigan.

Tilt 02-04-19

You can start to see the pattern emerging in the knitted fabric.  It used to be that photos showed the patterning much better than in real life.  Now it’s about the same.  I’m going to like this sweater!

 

3 comments on “Stranded Knitting – QueerJoe Tips

  1. I’m a big knit companion fan and have been since it’s inception. I recommend the paid version. I keep bugging them to release a Windows version for setup, so I can transfer to phone or iPad for knitting.

    That’s going to be a nice sweater 🙂

    1. Thanks Diane. I’ve been looking for more reasons to justify owning a tablet and KnitCompanion brings me to full justification. I’ve been carrying around a small portfolio of printed patterns that I use regularly and it has now been completely replaced!!

  2. I us PDF expert in a similar way. I import the patterns and then I can scribble,9th; them, highlight them, write text on them, in different colours. No going back!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *