Cardigan Update

Thanks everyone for your support with regards to rippin' it all out and startin' all over again.

P1010040I've made some progress since I last posted a shot.  The back is coming along nicely; it's about 6 inches along.  You're right, Johanna, I'm more excited about this sweater than I was with the other one.

P1010047I will continue to tweak the pattern that I posted on Saturday.  First, instead of nothing for an edging, I've done three inches of K2, P1 ribbing (closeup on the right).  Second, I've added two stitches on the back, to create the slip-stitch selvage.  I hope this will make seaming easier.

Now, I'm on to waist shaping.  It's not necessary, but I think a slightly hourglass shape gives a sweater a very flattering fit.  To do that I'll decrease 1 stitch at the beginning and end of every fourth row 5 times.  Why?  I'll take you through my logic below.

[If you read this and think "WTF is she going on about?" I highly recommend Knitting Math 101 and 102 series at Circles.]

When I began the back, I determined that starting the decreases about 6 inches up from the cast-on edge would be fine.  I knit 3 inches of ribbing, and 3 inches of stockinette.  Then I figured the decrease amount.  In my case, since the bottom started out at 38 inches wide, I thought that decreasing the diameter by 4 inches, to 34 inches would give the cardi some slight waste shaping, without being too drastic.  If I layer underneath, I want some ease. 

Now I need to figure out the decrease amount each cardigan piece.  I'll have to reduce equally at each side seam.  Each seam comprises two edges.  There are four points where I reduce: on each side of the back (2), and on one side of each front piece (2).

Next, I divide the total amount reduced (4 inches) by the number of opportunities to reduce (4).  That means each point reduces by 1 inch, and both seams by 2 inches total.

With my gauge (5sts/in) I know that 1 inch equals 5 stitches.  Every point will lose 5 stitches total (5sts x 4points=20 stitches; 20sts=4in @ 5sts/1in).  Half the waist shaping will happen on the back, and there are 2 decrease points on the back (each end).  The back will lose 10 stitches in total (5sts x 2points=10sts; 10sts=2in @5sts/1in).

I know that I will loose 2 stitches every time I reduce, so there will be 5 reduction rows (10/2=5).  How do I space these rows?  I do some more measuring, and figure out that I'd like the hourglass to reach its narrowest point about 3 inches after I start it.  Checking my row gauge (6rows=1inch) I need to accomplish all my reductions in 18 rows (18/6=3inches).  Since 18 doesn't divide evenly by 5, I'll round up to a number that does, 20.  Divide 20 by 5 to get the spacing: 4 rows.

I need to reduce at the beginning and end of every fourth row 5 times.  Which type of decrease do I use?  I'll let you know.


I LOVE MATH! You go girl. Nice work and way to figure it out!


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