Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Cheating decreases

Feast your eyes on these puppies. Four months of committed sock knitting to produce an exquisite lacey (subtle mesh patterned) anklet. Both yarn and pattern came to me in my July Blue Moon Fiber Arts Rockin' Sock Club kit.

Yarn: Socks That Rock Lightweight in Peaseblossom (1 skein)
Pattern: Hippy Crunchy
Needles: 2.25mm Clover Takumi DPNs

Perhaps the only reason I ever finished these socks was that I found a way to cheat the K3tog and SSSK decreases about 10 rounds in. To encourage other knitters that feel a little woozy when see they a pattern with muti-stitch decreases, I thought I'd put a quick tutorial together on how to accomplish the aforementioned without breaking a sweat or a dpn. Note that basic information on these two decreases can be found here.

The Majestic SSSK

First you need to slip 3 stitches as if to knit from the left to the right-hand needle, just like you were doing a regular SSK.

Next you SSK the two stitches closest to the tip of your right hand needle as you normally would (if you're really struggling you can just SSK the first stitch, and use the leap-frog technique described below to deal with the other two later.)

Here's the cheating part. Lift or leap-frog the unworked-but-previously-slipped-stitch on the right-hand needle (now the second one from the tip) over the SSK that you just worked.

Et Voila! A lovely, angst-free, and slightly blurry SSSK.

The Regal K3tog

This one follows the same principles as the SSSK but with one extra (easy) step. First you'll knit the first two stitches on the left hand needle together (K2tog) same as always (again if worst comes to worse you can just knit the first stitch and repeat the leap-frogging described below twice for the same effect.)

Now you have your worked decrease on the right-hand needle and your left over stitch on the left-hand needle (see picture).

Here's the extra step part. Slip the worked K2tog decrease purlwise from the right to left-hand needle so that it looks like this.

Then you just lift or leap-frog the remaining stitch to be worked over your decrease.

Now slip the whole thing purlwise back onto to the right-hand needle and you're done another beautiful decrease.

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