The knitting is behind us and it’s time to graft the cowl. Prior to that step, careful blocking is required to allow Ambiguous to bloom to its full beauty. Begin by placing the live stitches from the last round of knitting onto a piece of waste yarn. Break the BC yarn leaving a long tail for the grafting process (about 4 times the circumference of the cowl). Cut the MC yarn and weave in all of the ends. Take care to weave in the first stitch of Round 1 at the cast on edge. This will prevent it from disappearing when the waste yarn from the provisional cast on is removed.
Give your cowl a nice cool bath allowing it to soak for a good 15 minutes to allow for complete saturation. In my photo below, I did not weave in the MC yarn prior to soaking because I was in the design phase and gave myself a safety net – luckily, it turned out fine:)
Squeeze and gently roll out the excess moisture. Never wring your knitting! Pin the cowl into shape making sure that the Front (lower half) and Inside (upper half) measure the same width and height. I ran blocking wires along the vertical sides and pinned the horizontal edges. Stretch out the fabric enough to smooth and straighten any puckering. As you can see from the photo below, my wet cowl grew a bit in dimensions and I was delighted with the extra width.
Once the cowl is completely dry (and this will take a while), it’s time to seam the first round to the last round using the Kitchener Stitch in Garter Stitch. I chose this technique because the grafted edge will be identical to the purl ridge making the cowl reversible from every angle. For those new to this technique, it is much simple than the Kitchener Stitch stockinette version. In the garter version, the same operation is performed on both needles which minimizes confusion that often occurs in stockinette. Since the edge is bumpy, tension issues are masked as well.
Before undertaking the grafting, I highly recommend watching my Kitchener in the Round – Garter Stitch video. The video has lots of helpful tips as I work across a small demo piece.
Place the live stitches (last round of cowl) onto a circular needle and remove its waste yarn. Using the lifeline as a guide, thread the second circular needle through the first round of knitting at the lower edge above the provisional cast on. Remove the waste yarn to reveal the live stitches.
Carefully fold the Inside to the wrong side of the Front with wrong side facing each other. If folded correctly, the purl stitches are hidden in the fold and you should see the right side of the Inside design when peering to the center of the tube. This is clearly demonstrated in my video. This folding procedure is different from my Kitchener in the Round (stockinette) so be sure to double check the work.
Thread the long tail onto a tapestry needle and begin the grafting. For an expert seam, place a marker through the first stitch on each needle as demonstrated in the video. I also prefer to place markers at regular intervals on both needles to help me stay on track. In Ambiguous, I put a marker every 16 stitches on each needle. If done properly, you will reach the marker at the same point on each needle at the same time. Should something go awry, it is much easier to back out a few stitches than 272!
Once the grafting is complete, weave in the remaining tail by fishing it through the stitches sandwiched between the layers or weave in on the surface with the Duplicate Stitch. Now it’s time to wear your beauty with pride!
Be sure to enter your completed cowl in the Skacel Collection prize drawing by February 29th. Not only could you be knitting with a new set of addi interchangeable needles, but your entry lets our sponsor know that you have enjoyed the knit along and you want to keep them coming!
As always, I am honored and delighted to lead the knit along. I hope you had fun and learned something in our time together. I am wildly excited about the April KAL (details below) and hope to see you all then!
Place live stitches on waste yarn.
Break BC yarn leaving a tail 4 times circumference of cowl – approx. 80 (150)” for grafting.
Weave in all ends except long tail for Kitchener Stitch.
Block to desired measurements.
Place live sts back on circular needle.
Using Lifeline as a guide, thread the second circular needle through the first round and remove waste yarn from provisional cast on.
Fold cowl at purl ridge so that purl sides of cowl are facing each other.
Place a marker every 16 stitches on each needle to help stay on track during grafting.
Using BC long tail, graft using Garter Kitchener Stitch.
Garter Kitchener Stitch
See Garter Kitchener Stitch video (not released)
Set Up – Place a marker through the first stitch to be grafted on each needle.
Begin grafting with needle holding former cast on sts closest to you – this will be front needle. Needle holding live stitches will be behind this needle – this will be back needle.
- On front needle, pass tapestry needle through first stitch as if to knit, drop this stitch off needle. Pass tapestry needle through the next stitch as if to purl, drawing yarn through and leave stitch on needle.
- On back needle, pass tapestry needle through first stitch as if to knit, drop this stitch off needle. Pass tapestry needle through the next stitch as if to purl, drawing yarn through and leave stitch on needle.
Repeat steps 1 and 2 until 1 stitch remains on each needle.
Thread tail through stitch on front needle as if to knit and then through first stitch of round (marked stitch) as if to purl and draw yarn through. Repeat on back needle.
Weave in tail to wrong side or on right side using Duplicate Stitch.
See Duplicate Stitch video
April Knit Along – 14 Carat
Join me in April as we knit a gorgeous poncho – absolutely this year’s hottest fashion accessory! The fabric has an interesting design with superior drape. Best of all, the simple construction makes it a garment that is flattering on EVERYONE! Knitters of all shapes and sizes modeled the poncho and were thrilled with the flattering silhouette. Most ponchos are available in the dreaded “one size fits all”, but I have two sizes to please everyone. Whether you are new to garments or an experienced veteran, 14 Carat will bring you new skills as well as a stylish garment. No previous garment experience is necessary – it’s the perfect first step to wearable knitting!
14 Carat is knit with Cobasi fingering yarn making it a lightweight top appropriate for chilly spring evenings or overly air conditioned restaurants in the summer. Cobasi is available in solid, tonal and multi-colors that will all showcase the design.
Small/ Med. (Large/ XL)
22 (24 1/2)” wide, 60 (67)” long before folding
- CoBaSi by HiKoo, 50g/220 yards each, 55% cotton, 16% bamboo, 8% silk, 21% elastic nylon, 6 (8) skeins
- US #7 (4.5mm) needle or size needed to obtain gauge
- Size F crochet hook for cast on (surprise, it’s not a provisional cast on!)
23 sts and 31 rows = 4” in stockinette, unblocked