Thursday, December 28, 2006

Vertical Lifelines

I am SUCH a lazy knitter. I HATE picking up stitches and won't do it unless there is absolutely no other option. And of course there's another option! Need you even ask?

I guess I invented the concept of vertical lifelines, as I have never heard of them anywhere else. Basically, it's just a thread that runs up the side of the knitting along the edge. Every time you begin a row, just pick up the yarn under the lifeline so the working yarn wraps around it. And when you need those edge stitches, you can slide a needle through all the pick-ups in a few minutes.

You will probably have to pick up some extra stitches, as this method only threads through every other row. However, most of the work is already done and it's easy enough to evenly add the extra stitches where you need them.

For long, long edges such as shawls, I use a twisted silk embroidery thread or buttonhole thread wrapped around a cardboard bobbin. As I need more thread, I just unwrap it from the bobbin, which is pinned to the shawl or left floating, depending on my mood.

Here's the best I can do with a close-up of a vertical lifeline:

6 comments:

Meg Weaver said...

You have flat out just saved my hide with this one. I had no idea how I was going to pick up the 960 stitches in my wedding shawl border without going bonkers.

Ceallach said...

Fleegle, I love the vertical lifelines, which I learned from lucy neatby......use them on sock toes.....

Anonymous said...

Ah, Lucy uses horizontal ones, actually.

Kate/Massachusetts said...

Your vertical lifelines have rescued my husband's Christmas gift from the back of the closet! I am making a modular-knit afghan for him but picking up the edges came out messy and amateurish. I tried your vertical lifeline and am amazed at how perfect it looks! DH may yet be warm watching the tube! Thank you for posting it!

fleegle said...

I am so glad that people are finding this stuff useful.
And that it seems to be rescuing a lot of projects!

cheryl said...

wish I had seen this three days ago. Brilliant!