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 Which selvedge stitch to use?
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TXknitter
New Pal

6 Posts

Posted - 07/27/2006 :  06:35:19 AM  Show Profile Send TXknitter a Private Message
I'm starting my second sweater and desperately want to do a better job of seaming than I did on my first! (It was a nightmare, especially with the dark-colored yarn.) I'm starting the button-front vest from Men in Knits, which is stockinette with a single cable that goes up each side of the front next to the bands. So . . .

Which selvedge stitch is best for stockinette? I want to have a nice edge to seam with, but I've read somewhere that the "slip the first stitch, knit the last stitch of every row" selvedge stitch means that you're only stitching the seam on half the stitches--thus possibly producing a gap or a seam that's not as strong.

Thoughts? Should I not use this selvedge stitch? Is there another selvedge stitch that's a better choice for stockinette? I'd appreciate any advice before I plunge in! :)

Thanks!!

pinecone70
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
393 Posts

Posted - 07/27/2006 :  06:54:52 AM  Show Profile Send pinecone70 a Private Message
I always do a chain edge selvedge, slipping the first stitch purlwise, proceeding, then knitting the last stitch. When I sew up my sides I do them twice, once loosely mattress-stitching the chains (they do end up gappy, but that's okay) and later grafting the knit stitches on the public side of the work. If I'm careful, this ends up being nearly invisible as though it were one knitted piece. The extra sewing is worth it and I'm confident that my seams won't come apart.
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PamelaA3
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
476 Posts

Posted - 07/28/2006 :  07:04:08 AM  Show Profile Send PamelaA3 a Private Message
May I recommend a good book, Knitting in Plain English by Maggie Reghetti. She recommends not slipping any edge stitches that will be seamed. She says the seams are less stable and if your edge stockinette stitches are firm you will get an invisible seam. I find that if I place the needle in the first stitch of a row, tug on the yarn, wrap, and knit or purl the first stitch if tightens and removes excess yarn from the last stitch of the previous row. I repeat this process on the second stitch of the new row and this tightens the first stitch of the current row. Be sure to place the needle into the stitch before tugging as this preserves the right amount of yarn needed for the stitch. All edges will be firm and your work will measure the same on both side edges from bottom up to the top. Use the mattress stitch to seam. Good luck with your new planned sweater.

Pam
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Dances with Needles
Chatty Knitter

197 Posts

Posted - 07/28/2006 :  07:12:29 AM  Show Profile Send Dances with Needles a Private Message
the edge done this way will have a nice smooth side if you slip the needle through th first loop and bring theyarn to the back of your work between the needles.

DWN
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MeezieGirl
Seriously Hooked

USA
623 Posts

Posted - 07/28/2006 :  07:19:48 AM  Show Profile Send MeezieGirl a Private Message
I agree with Pam. When I'm making a garment that will be seamed up, I never use a selvedge stitch. I find a selvedge stitch gets in the way of seaming. I use mattress stitch for seaming. Another thing that will help your finishing is to make any increases or decreases one or two stitches in from the edge. This gives a line of "clean" stitches to seam up. And if the shoulder shaping is a series of bound off stitches to create a slope, I change that to a series of short rows. That gives a smooth slant for sewing up. Much nicer. Also I do decreases at the armhole instead of binding off (except for the first set of bound off stitches, usually about 1"), sometimes doing a double decrease if needed.

Good luck.

Dee

You can take the girl out of New York, but you can't take New York out of the girl.

http://meeziegirl.blogspot.com
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PamelaA3
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
476 Posts

Posted - 07/28/2006 :  7:20:37 PM  Show Profile Send PamelaA3 a Private Message
Since Dee mentioned the shoulders seams, may I throw in another thought. Use the three-needle bind off unless your pattern tells you to use another method for a particular reason. Notice that store bought knit garments usually have no stretch in the shoulder seam. This is to keep your sleeve up in place at the shoulder, instead of it stretching down onto the upper arm. Upper body garments hang from the shoulders, so this area should be stable. It will make the garment look nicer when worn.

Pam
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TXknitter
New Pal

6 Posts

Posted - 07/31/2006 :  11:35:45 AM  Show Profile Send TXknitter a Private Message
Thanks for all the good advice! Although Pinecone70's method sounds like it makes for a neat appearance, I'm afraid I don't have the extra time. (It's taking a supreme effort to find time to knit at all, since I just had a baby four weeks ago and have two toddlers, too. But it's so calming! Fifteen minutes after the 2:00 a.m. feeding makes me feel like I have time for ME.)

I think I'll take Pam & Dee's advice and go with the stockinette edge. Thanks for the extra tips, too! I'm printing out this page to help me remember. They sound like an easy way as I go to make this sweater vest a nicer-looking project. (I'm making it for my husband and then sizing it down--crossing my fingers here that I do the math right!--to make one for my two-year-old son to match his daddy. But hey--nothing ventured, nothing gained!)
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gwtreece
Permanent Resident

USA
7254 Posts

Posted - 07/31/2006 :  12:16:08 PM  Show Profile  Send gwtreece a Yahoo! Message Send gwtreece a Private Message
I want to see pictures when they are done. I think that will be so cute to have dad and son in the same pattern.

Wanda
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