Saturday, September 09, 2006

Hi everyone - I am excited about joining in and will be doing the simple knitted bodice - it looks so lovely. I have got the pattern and now just need to ask a few questions.

I haven't knitted for quite a few years and never really got the hang of getting the right guage - it was all a bit hit and miss. So I need to know the best way to knit a swatch. So, the SKB is 20 stitches 4 inches. Do I cast on 20 stitches or do I put some selvage stitches on? Any guidance appreciated.

I am in the UK and have been trying to source yarn on the internet - I don't think I can get Tilli Tomas, but have found Debbi Bliss Alpaca Silk (80% Alpaca 20% Silk) and Rowan Natural Silk Aran (73% viscose, 15% silk, 12% linen.) Does anyone have any experience of these yarns? I think the Debbi Bliss has a sheen, which would be nice. I worry about getting the drape effect though - especially if I do long sleeves. Any thoughts?

Looking forward to the creative process.


Bettina said...

Hi.. regarding swatching.

You should cast on about 40 stitches. Knit first six rows in garter stitch to keep the swatch from curling, then continue in garter stitch for the first five and the last five stitches, the rest in stocking stitch. Once the center stocking stitch part is big enough, i.e. about 5", knit another six rows garter stitch and then bind off. Wash and block and then measure, in the stocking stitch part of the swatch. If the gauge is not correct, change needles, start again, as above. I know it sounds time consuming, but it can save a lot of grief!

By the way, this will also let you judge how much drape your finished garment will have after you wash and block it.

Happy Knitting!

Tamara said...

Hi! The Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk is very soft, but it may be a bit chunky for the pattern. It is only 71 yards for 50 grams and the Tilli Tomas is 130 yards. Of course you can always buy just one and swatch before investing in the whole kit and kaboodle. I've never seen the Rowan yarn so don't know about that. Good luck in your yarn hunt!

Michelle said...

I usually cast on a few extra stitches on each I'd probably cast on about 26-28 do the first and last 2-3 rows in garter stitch, then knit the first 2 and ladt two of each row, and do stockinette for the rest. I hate doing gauge swatches but I know they have to be done, so I make them as small as I can....