Thursday, December 27, 2012

Avoiding SSS

I may have mentioned this before: I don't like knitting sleeves. Emphasis on the plural. The first sleeve isn't  too bad, but having to knit the Exact Same Thing twice: I'm not a fan (which is why I have a lot of single socks). Every sweater I knit suffers from Second Sleeve Syndrome, but I've found a way that makes it a bit easier:

I do them first.

Let's face it, the enthusiasm for a project is highest at the beginning. Now patterns always seem to like to start with the back (usually the largest piece, especially when knitting cardigans), but there's no knitting law that requires the back to be knit first. By the time the back is done, sure a huge chunk of the sweater is done, but then there's those nasty sleeves to knit (twice).

So now I cast on my sleeves first when ever I can (this doesn't work on some projects: top down or if you pick up stitches and knit the sleeves top down).

The other advantage of doing a sleeve first? It's a great test knit. Since it's usually the smallest piece of the sweater, it can be used as a swatch. It's a great way to get comfortable with the pattern stitch and you can even check gauge (if you do that sort of thing*).

So both sleeves are now done on my Eyelet & Cable Cardigan and I'm working on the back. As a matter of fact, the eyelet & cable section is already done on the back, and I'm now on the boring st. st. Hmmm, maybe I need to come up with a way to avoid BSS (Boring Stockinette Stitch)?


  1. Mmm, fluffy pink yarn. I like it!

  2. Mmm, fluffy pink yarn. I like it!

  3. Patty Gilmore11:25 AM

    First of all, I have to commend your talent, which by the looks of your galleries is IMMENSE! I browse the web just about every day for fun, searching for beautiful hand knit items and inspiration for new projects. After seeing hundreds (more like thousands) of photos, your galleries clearly stood out for your aesthetic & the beautiful quality of your work. That said, you also made me lol about the dreaded 2nd sleeve! I too, hate that part & do sleeves first!


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