Monday, September 28, 2015

Leedra's Edge and Bind Off

 I designed my first shawl in 2011.

I design bottom up shawls and I design top down shawls.  But it seems no matter whether it is bottom up or top down I prefer to use a seed stitch edge for the border.  I have designed a few shawls without this seed stitch edge, but not many.   For the top down shawls the seed stitch is started as a neck tab which just continues down the edge on both sides as you knit the shawl.  In the photo below you can see the first stitch is always slipped.  I slip this stitch purlwise.  The working yarn is then taken in front of the work and between the needles to the back of the work, ready to work the next stitch.  If you take the yarn behind the needle to the back it will not look the same, so you need to be consistent in the way the yarn is taken to the back.  With a top down shawl the seed stitch is always six stitches.  With the bottom up shawl the seed stitch can be either four or six stitches.
Because I like the seed stitch for most designs I needed to come up with a good way to continue the edge around the neck when designing a bottom up shawl.  So I designed what was quickly named Leedra's Edge and Bind Off  by my test knitters. 

I have designed several shawls ending with Leedra's Edge and Bind Off, they are
and

The edge stitches are the same whether working the right side and wrong side rows.
At the beginning of the rows my six stitch seed stitch edge is worked as follows:
Slip 1, k1, p1, k1, p1, k1.
The end of the rows are worked as follows:
k1, p1, k1, p1, k2.

After a shawl is complete except the neck is when Leedra's Edge and Bind Off is used.
Leedra's Bind Off is completed with one size needle smaller than the shawl is knit with.
This is accomplished by changing to the smaller needle and knitting the last wrong side row immediately before the beginning of the bind off with the smaller needle.
With the right side facing Leedra's Edge and Bind Off is worked as follows:
Notice in the photos one side is still on the circular needle used for the shawl,
And I started using a double point needle for the other end.
Slip 1, (k1, p1) x2, k3tog, 
turn,

(k1, p1) x2, k2, 
turn.
Repeat until there are a total of 12 stitches remaining.
(6 stitches on each needle)
End with the k3tog, without turning.
 When there are 6 stitches on each needle the 6 stitches on the circular needle can be moved to a double point needle.  Turn the two double  point needles so the wrong sides are facing each other.  This places the yarn on the back needle on the right side.  This is the correct location for grafting the 12 stitches together using the Kitchener Stitch method.
For convenience I have added instructions for the Kitchener Stitch at the
bottom of this blog post.
Due to the k3tog stitches,
after the Leedra's Edge and Bind Off is completed you can see a small hole.  
With shawls the hole is just another design element.
The photo below shows the side edge as it curves at the front of the shawl.
And this last photo shows the curve created for the neck of the shawl.

Kitchener Stitch Setup:  

Attach your yarn to a darning needle and thread the yarn through the first stitch on the front needle as if to purl and leave the stitch on the needle.  Then thread the yarn through the first stitch on the back needle as if to knit and leave the stitch on the needle.
Kitchener Stitch:  

Step 1:  
Thread the yarn through the first stitch on the front needle as if to knit, and slip the stitch off the needle.

Step 2:  

Thread the yarn through the next stitch on the front needle as if to purl and leave the stitch on the needle.
Step 3:  

Thread the yarn through the first stitch on the back needle as if to purl and slip it off the needle.
Step 4:  

Thread the yarn through the next stitch on the back needle as if to knit, and leave the stitch on the needle.
Repeat steps 1 thru 4 until all the stitches are off both needles.



No comments: