Thursday, January 30, 2014

Braving Steeks

This sweater project is the first time I have done steeks.  Steeks are scary.  Who would want to cut their knitting!?  There are some lovely patterns that use steeks though, so I think they are worth it to overcome that fear.  Plus you can check that box on your knitting accomplishments list!

This sweater has steeks at the armholes and in the front for the neckline.  The most important thing is preparation.  After you have your pieces knit, block them.  You want the fibers to relax and stick to each other a little.

Use a contrasting color to out line the steek, pierce the stitches as you go (like a split stitch) to lock them in place.  The outline will not show, use any color you like.

Use a sewing maching to trace over your outlined steek.  The pattern didn't call for this so when I started picking up stitches for the sleeve, I had a few threads coming loose and immediately got out the sewing machine.  Go over your outline several times.  In this picture you can see the sewing stitches and that I've cut the neckline steek!

After that it's not that bad.  Pick up stitches for the arms, and you're on to the next step in the pattern.

 Here I've cut the arm hole steek, and am ready to pick up stitches.
Here the sweaters right arm is complete, on to the left.

I don't love steeks, but they aren't something to be dreaded either.  For writing a pattern I think I would make arm holes in the pattern, but steeks would not stop me from knitting a pattern I liked.

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