(Or how not to make a mountain out of a knitted molehill).
Have that wine before you steek, and you'll see just how swimmingly it will go. (Actually, we have a saying in our knitting group: friends don't let friends knit drunk. When someone brings that up, we all laugh, raise our glasses in a toast and put down our knitting. Don't tell our husbands, but I think they're on to us already...)
That aside, here's what I learned from my first steeked Lopi project:
You don't need more than 3 steek stitches to work with. I had 4 and all that amounted to was a waste of wool. Next time, I'm using only 3. Purl these 3 steek stitches, which leads me to my next tip:
When you come to your first steek stitch, purl it into the back of the loop. This will twist the stitch and tighten up the previous knit stitch, namely your last knit stitch before the steek. It's not imperative, but it does create a nicer, tighter finish. You'll notice in the photo below, the last knitted stitch before the steek is a bit loose. (In the photo below, I have pulled all my ends to the front of the steek so they wouldn't get caught in the sewing machine foot inadvertently). Next time, I'm purling that first steeked stitch through the back of the loop. No more loosey-goosey edge stitches. I wish I knew that before, but there you have it. Live and learn.
H. A. Kidd in Toronto, and if you ever come across this item, buy a few packs. They're cheap, and you can dole them out to fellow knitters when they remark what a great idea it is.
Here's a look at the back of the sweater, and the photo that made me realize I should have just knit the whole bloody thing as a pullover and saved myself some agony:
Since my Dad has an ancient Lopi cardigan, I thought I'd borrow it and have a gander at how it was finished. (There's nothing like reverse engineering...)
Behold, here are the machine stitches hidden by the crocheted-on border:
Here's a look at the crocheted border on this sweater:
Here's a look at the edge, post-sewing, pre-cutting. Instructions said to sew up each edge twice. I follow instructions, ergo, we have 2 rows of stitches on either side of the steek:
And yet another, post-cutting showing the nice, straight edge. So far, so good:
So stay tuned for the never-ending Saga of the Saga. One knitted I-cord edge, coming right up! This one will be in a different colour. Now if only I could remember where I placed that skein for safe keeping, I'd be one step ahead!
Maybe I should go interrogate the cats...