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 Ladderless socks
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Grand-moogi
Seriously Hooked

Australia
783 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2012 :  08:26:49 AM  Show Profile Send Grand-moogi a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Is there a trick to knitting with DPNS so you do not end up with a ladder at the changeover?

I knit a hug into every stitch

azblueskies
Permanent Resident

2393 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2012 :  12:40:26 PM  Show Profile Send azblueskies a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I always pulled the yarn tight on the first stitch on each DPN and I'd move my stitches every once in awhile from one DPN to the next. I think it all works out after you've washed the finished item. I saw a tip on Cat's Sweet Tomato Heel instructions to put one stitch on each side of the front row of stitches (these are worked on circulars) on a safety pin and then when you finish the heel, you work those two stitches back up to the top and back onto the needles. It really tightened up the stitches and there was no ladder.

azblue
------------------------------------------------------------------
So much to learn, so little time.
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purlthis
Permanent Resident

USA
2754 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2012 :  2:41:16 PM  Show Profile  Visit purlthis's Homepage Send purlthis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I abandoned DPN's, and went to magic loop.

Rachel
------------------------------------------------------
As I get older, I prefer to knit. Tracey Ullman
http://purledthis.blogspot.com/ UPDATED! WITH PICS!
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sheilaokeefe
New Pal

USA
1 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2012 :  8:30:53 PM  Show Profile  Visit sheilaokeefe's Homepage Send sheilaokeefe a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I knit the first couple stitches from the next needle onto the old needle before starting the new needle. So the gap point moves a couple stitches each round.
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ribit@taconic.net
New Pal

2 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  03:29:52 AM  Show Profile Send ribit@taconic.net a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I knit the first stitch on the dpn at the regular tension and knit the second stitch tighter. I can't remember for sure where I heard this suggestion, but I think it may have been Cat Bordhi.
Tempe
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gerstperson
Warming Up

USA
90 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  04:04:48 AM  Show Profile Send gerstperson a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There are a few tricks I use. First, if you are knitting in stockinette, make sure you knit the first TWO stitches of each needle with extra tension--after I knit the first stitch, I give the yarn a tug to make sure that the stitch is tight up against the last stitch of the new needle, and then without releasing the yarn, I knit the next stitch. With this method I do not get a ladder. However, reverse stockinette is still a problem. So, if the natural break between needles occurs between two purl stitches, I look for a place in the pattern where a knit stitch meets a purl stitch, and use that as my break between needles. If I do that, I might need a stitch marker to tell me where the beginning of the round is. Finally, if I am doing reverse stockinette (since I am a continental knitter, I go to great lengths to avoid this), I will constantly move the break point by knitting an additional stitch off the next needle on each needle as I go around. This will definitely need a stitch marker for the beginning of the round.

Sharon

Chinese Proverb: Man who says it cannot be done, should not interrupt woman who is doing it.
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Jane
SustaYning Member

USA
4390 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  04:34:11 AM  Show Profile  Visit Jane's Homepage Send Jane a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I learned almost everything I know about knitting socks (and more) from our dear Fran Marrs, so when I saw this topic I went to the archives to see what she had to say. Here's her post from this thread in June, 2006:

"Knit the first stitch tighter but remember it will loosen up again. After you knit the second stitch, tug a little on the yarn and it will lock the first one in place. The ladder is caused not by the stitch but the segment of yarn between the stitches. Sometimes we work very hard to get the stitches tight and forget about the small segment of yarn between them.

Yes, it is more difficult if you are a tight knitter because you do not have as much leeway to tighten up your already tight stitches.

Finally, don't worry about it. Two things will happen. With experience and practice your ladders will disappear. And it will all come out in the wash. After a few washings, your ladders will disappear. Elizabeth Zimmerman once said that she had thought earlier knitters were so perfect because their stitches were so even. Then she noticed that as her own knitted garments were worn and laundered, the stitches evened out and kept looking better and better.

Ladders in socks is an issue that will take care of itself the more you knit socks and the more the socks are worn.

fran"

For anyone here at KR who never had the chance to benefit from Fran's immense knowledge and delightful humor, all you have to do is type "Fran" or "fmarrs" into the box on the search page. You'll be amazed. I miss her, and I think of her often.

Jane

Betty deserves everything and more: Make a Donation
Blog: Not Plain Jane
Photos: Flickr Album
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lemons
Permanent Resident

1692 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  05:12:17 AM  Show Profile Send lemons a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Yes, I think of Fran often. She was a guiding star for many of us. As to the ladders: I find much less of a problem with bamboo needles, which seem to grab the yarn much better. And the second-stitch thing works for me. Those ladders kept me from trying socks for years and years. Now I probably have two dozen pairs.
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ikkivan
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
545 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  07:12:50 AM  Show Profile  Visit ikkivan's Homepage Send ikkivan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I first learned to knit socks on dp needles, as I advise others to do because I think it helps understand sock "architecture." However, once I knew what was going on, I switched to Magic Loop. I have no ladder problems, but if I did, there are only TWO spots to deal with instead of three or four. I will never go back to dpns ... well, okay, if on a desert island with only those available!

I also agree with the idea of making sure the needles come together at a place where a stitch pattern changes.

Donna, with intentions always bigger than her available time. (OkieDokieKnitter on Ravelry)
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shabet
New Pal

1 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  07:49:50 AM  Show Profile Send shabet a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Whenever I use DPN's, whether for socks, hats, or whatever, I just constantly change the number of stitches per needle. If I start with 42 stitches as three needles of 14, for example, I'll make a point to knit 15 or 16 stitches onto each needle, continuously moving where the split between needles falls. If there's some specific reason that I need to keep the same number of stitches for a few rounds I will, but never long enough to end up with laddering. As long as I have a stitch marker at the beginning of the round, this has worked for me.

The one time I tried to do magic loop I ended up with such bad laddering, that pair of socks has been hibernating on the needles for about 4 years. Someday I may get back to trying it again....
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Beth2
New Pal

USA
2 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  08:41:03 AM  Show Profile  Visit Beth2's Homepage Send Beth2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I love dpns and never have a problem with ladders when knitting socks. It has become second nature to knit the first, second and last stitches on every needle with an increase in tension. With a bit of practice, it becomes clear how much to increase the tension to have a smooth transition between needles.

Beth2 on Ravelry
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geniaknitz
New Pal

USA
11 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  09:16:51 AM  Show Profile Send geniaknitz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm with those who say to tighten the first and second stitch. I learned that trick from Cat Bordhi and I don't even have to think about it anymore. I never have ladders, with any kind of DPNs.
I DO, almost always, have a loose spot on the cast-on row - anybody have a trick for making the initial joining disappear? I can fix it when I weave in the tail, but I'd love for it not to happen at all.
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LoplollyBlue
New Pal

USA
14 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  10:07:53 AM  Show Profile Send LoplollyBlue a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I like dpn's for socks and don't have a problem with ladders. I am a tight knitter so that might be why but I read/heard somewhere that one doesn't get ladders when using 4 dpn's instead of 3 (5 instead of 4). It has to do with the angle produced. I almost always (can't remember when I didn't) use the square (4 needle) way and, as I said above, just don't get ladders. But... if I were a looser knitter, would I?
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peggity
Chatty Knitter

USA
116 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  10:11:28 AM  Show Profile Send peggity a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Don't remember where I learned this trick for tightening up the first round join, but it works well.
When beginning the join, insert the needle purlwise and use the tail yarn to purl the first stitch, but leave the stitch on the needle. Pull the tail yarn all the way through and leave it hanging at the front of your work. Now knit into that first stitch as usual. After completing the first round, flip the tail yarn from the front of your knitting to the back, tightening the join.

~Peggy~
Colorado-USA
My Photos: http://www.Ravelry.com/people/peggity/
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memoir
New Pal

8 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  11:39:16 AM  Show Profile Send memoir a Private Message  Reply with Quote
[quote]Originally posted by purlthis

I abandoned DPN's, and went to magic loop.

Rachel
------------------------------------------------------
As I get older, I prefer to knit. Tracey Ullman
http://purledthis.blogspot.com/ UPDATED! WITH PICS!

ok,,, what is a magic loop.. lol,, thanks
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PBELKNAP
Permanent Resident

USA
1136 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  12:42:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit PBELKNAP's Homepage Send PBELKNAP a Private Message  Reply with Quote
You all are going to think I'm nuts, but I have the OPPOSITE problem. My stitches at those points are too tight! If anything, I have to consciously not pull the first two stitches tighter...

*************************

PAM

Twitter Name = WildKnitter

Blog: http://wildknitter.blogspot.com

If I could only do this for a living...
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purlthis
Permanent Resident

USA
2754 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2012 :  7:31:17 PM  Show Profile  Visit purlthis's Homepage Send purlthis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Magic loop is where you use a long circular, rather than double points. If you go to knittinghelp.com, I'm sure she has a video. It's much less fiddly for me. I knit really fast, and continental. All the stopping on dpn just irritates me.

Rachel
------------------------------------------------------
As I get older, I prefer to knit. Tracey Ullman
http://purledthis.blogspot.com/ UPDATED! WITH PICS!
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hillstreetmama
Permanent Resident

USA
3448 Posts

Posted - 10/26/2012 :  03:55:03 AM  Show Profile Send hillstreetmama a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm another who tightens the SECOND stitch on the needle. That tightens up the first, too, and I don't ever have ladders.

I still have the first project I made on DPN's. It was a tube sock (I was learning from a book) and you could climb the ladders that are on that sock! No amount of washing would even out that one! I've gotten better.

Jan
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yarnlover
Permanent Resident

1753 Posts

Posted - 10/26/2012 :  06:45:46 AM  Show Profile Send yarnlover a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I just purchased a circular needle, size 3 with a 9" cord. The clerk at the yarn shop told me a lot of her customers are buying these for socks. The needle is bamboo, or bamboo-like, so has enough grab. The needles are pretty short, and I wasn't sure if the whole thing would just be too small for me. They looked like toy needles.

I'm almost finished with one hand-warmer, using 64 stitches, which just fit on the cord, and after struggling just a little with the first couple of rows, I've adjusted to the small needle size and I think I will like using these needles.

I also bought a size 8, which has even shorter needles, and will experiment with this needle next.

Maybe not for everyone, and I certainly had reservations, but if you see these needles in your LYS, give them a try.


See My Stuff: Here

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azblueskies
Permanent Resident

2393 Posts

Posted - 10/26/2012 :  07:13:32 AM  Show Profile Send azblueskies a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Are they Hiya needles, yarnlover? I think that's what I tried out. If so, I really liked them. But now that I've finally tried Magic Loop (2 on 1) and love it, I'm back to the Addis. And have to say, I love the blue cord on the Addis.

azblue
------------------------------------------------------------------
So much to learn, so little time.
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robinstephanie
Permanent Resident

USA
1257 Posts

Posted - 10/26/2012 :  08:36:05 AM  Show Profile Send robinstephanie a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Peggity, your trick for tightening the join is intriguing. I'm starting a hat soon; I'll give it a try.

Like pbelknap, I have the opposite problem as ladders too--first stitch is sometimes almost too tight to get the needle in. But I never have ladders. I read about the trick in the KR archives, from Fran Marrs.

Robinsteph

Different is good. ~Matthew Hoover
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