September 19, 2003

Domino Knitting, by Vivian Hoxbro

I was cleaning out a knitting basket the other day and rediscovered this little book at the bottom under the debris of the last couple of projects I had used it for. And of course, the first reaction to finding a lost treasure is to sit down and read it again, happily something that in this case didn’t really take all that much time.

It's a short book that wonderfully illustrates a construction technique using bias knit squares of knitting to build a garment. Essentially you knit a square from corner to corner increasing to the desired width and then decreasing off to the other corner. Then you pick up the stitches from one side and do the same with some more simple increase and decreases. Then add one onto it on the other side and keep going sort of like putting together a patchwork quilt. There are no seams since all stitches are picked up and decreased off to points so there is no tedious sewing at the end. There are some limits to the design variations since it uses the square as the basis for all the designs with half squares to make a straight edge when wanted but when combined with color, the possibilities become amazing. And, whatever you make can be designed to use up the odd balls in your stash.

One word about stash—all knitters who are true knitters have one. It's a room, closet, boxes under the bed, whatever, where you keep all that incredibly luscious yarn and fiber you have bought over the years. That you have no project exactly in mind for it has no bearing on whether you purchase it. And "Stash Reduction" is a serious topic. Some knitters I know, and I am not making this up, have agreements with friends to clean out their stash and find it a good home in the event of their untimely demise. Honest. It takes years to develop a good stash.

Anyway, because I tend to prefer what a friend calls "dirt colors" to knit with, I have a box full of all sorts of single balls in shades of cream, gray, and brown to almost black that are just crying to be made into something using this method. Maybe a reading shawl. With a pocket on it. And there is that half skein of lapis blue left over from The Husband's Christmas vest a couple years ago that I could toss in to pick out a little color once in a while. Hmmm……

Posted by Deb English at September 19, 2003 04:45 PM