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Thursday, April 7, 2005

first flowers spied on my street

Just because the weather in APril in Chicago is so confused that one can’t tell up from down doesn’t mean my little knitting brain should spiral around like a top. Yet it happens. Over and over.

I take a straightforward pattern and make it HARD! I can’t look at a picture or read directions without having to TINKER. And tinkering can get you into trouble…


Here is the Martha cardi from Rowan #37. On the left you see tinkering: a moss stitch border. It is clunky and too wide. On the right, is the way the pattern intended it to appear – unobtrusive and simple, letting the checkerboard pattern sing it’s solo…


The Little Bad Muse has decided that I MUST tinker some more! To banish the nasty moss stitch edging, I will reverse engineer the edge. I take a needle several sizes smaller than the body needle and thread it through a row of stitches right where I want the new border to begin.


Now I find a stitch a row above the stitch I want to keep and snip it. This point should be a couple of inches from the nearest edge because you will use the *tail* formed to attach your new thread. Then, I un-ravel the yarn in both directions.


After all the stitches are unraveled in both directions, I am left with *live stitches* all ready to be knit into the new border of my chosing.


Here lies the detached moss stitch border, crying out for more tinkering! If I had a similar gauge project going on I could GRAFT this sucker right on another edge. See directions HERE

OMG! Stop Me before I TINK again…

Martha Knitalong hosted by the fabulous Rose

18 responses to “Thursday, April 7, 2005”

  1. kerrie says:

    What a great little tutorial. I did something similar with a sweater that needed lengthening at the weekend only not as neatly and concisely as you!

  2. Colleen says:

    You are so frickin’ brave. I am in knitting awe!!!

  3. Lee Anne says:

    Oh my I am going to learn a lot from you! I started knitting last fall and am loving it. You are one talented gal!

  4. Emily says:

    Oh my! I can’t believe all the wonderful things you do with your knitting! I don’t think I would ever have the nerve to attempt what you just did to that moss stitch border. Maybe after I’ve been knitting a few more years. LOL

  5. kathleen says:

    ok, now I know what to do when I make a mess of an edge. thanks so much for teaching this.

  6. Stacy says:

    Oh my god, what a genius maneuver! Now I know how I can add some length to an old sweater whose sleeves are just a tad too short. Thank you!

  7. camille says:

    Thanks so much for that edge tutorial! Now my husband’s Anniversary Sweater ( sleeves can be shortened to his liking. (I got overzealous with the length!) Your blog is great!

  8. Heather says:

    Bonne Marie, you are brilliant! Now I know there is hope if I ever screw up my border. Thank you :)

  9. Shari says:

    I’ve done that with sock tops. People don’t understand, it’s not bravery, you had two different borders already. That’s exactly what I did with the socks. I just shoved it out of my mind and away I went on different sock number two. We should make up a name for the tinkering disease. Fiddleitis? hahahaah

  10. B. says:

    I always think that one of the great things about knitting is the ability to change your mind and to correct mistakes. You just proved it again.

  11. Kim says:

    This just stopped my heart. Even after my 3rd cup of coffee!!

  12. Terra says:

    What great timing – I have a sweater a home with monkey-sleeves that need surgery!

  13. Leslie says:


    Again, you have my admiration! I am an experienced hand knitter and now learning machine knitting and would love to blend the two. I’m learning more and more about the ability to do parts by hand and parts by machine and I’m getting better and better at stitch manipulation for correcting issues in machine knitting. This demo was brilliant! You have such an ability to teach and to share. Thank you!

  14. Bonne Marie says:

    Thank you all so very much!!!

    I think knitting on the machine has made me very comfortable with putting those *live* stitches on and off the needle.

    When you finish a piece of machine knitting, you buzz the knitting carriage across all the stitches and they come off the machine as LOOPS…

    You also start the pieces with waste yarn, like a provisional cast-on, then return later and once again put those loopies on a needle to be hand-finished.

    I used to be really skittish about manipulating something that could unravel but have had very few tragic scenes that involved yarn; many more that involved my choice of boyfriends…

  15. Becky says:

    No, no! Tink away! Tink away! It helps us to tinker vicariously through your blog. Another great tutorial, B-M.

  16. stinkerbell says:

    I have to say I am jealous. I am making Martha too. But my tinkering is NOT intentional, it is the fact that I (alternatively) cant count, cant read instructions (decrease is NOT bind off, dingy!) and cant knit while doing something like breathing. I am bout to start bossing it into a corner tonight though!

    I cant wait to see your comments on this though, it will hopefully help me; heck I might even “tinker” intentionally turning it inside out…

  17. Michelle says:

    Hi Bonne Marie,
    Your Martha is going to be beautiful in the color. Your courage amazes and inspires….thank you for reminding us all to push the envelope once in a while!

  18. Bonne Marie says:

    stinkerB! I was also tempted to turn it inside out! HA! Another day – another sweater – hmmm…

    BRAVA your tinkering, my friend! My motto is “It is not a masterpiece unless it’s been frogged at least once!”

    Before I tinked those edges, I frogged the neckline shaping on the second front because I was 5 rows off. That is almost an inch – nowhere to hide on that one – which meant a *mere* 24 row Frog Dip…

    Signed: B-Marie, your fellow dork-in-progress…

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