After I finish this tam it's going to be a very long time before I perform another cable. I used to think they were fun.
Shit oh dear, that is a lot of cabling! I feel for you, I'm halfway through my first Brethren Sock now. Got to the heel and found out I couldn't get it over my foot....so I ripped back to the cuff and did it again with a slightly larger needle. It's all practice, isn't it? ;)
Whether doing it without a cable needle will be easier or harder depends on the yarn and how tight you knit I think. I've done it with larger, less-stretchy yarns, but tried it just once or twice with sock yarn; as soon as that needle was out, the loops were disappearing. Argh. BTW I just use a short circular needle when cabling; that way I can pick them up with one end, then knit them off the other end when the time comes. You just have to be careful when doing cable-backs to make sure the line also goes in back of your working yarn, otherwise you may end up with an unintentionally wrapped cable.
"Got to the heel and found out I couldn't get it over my foot..." Good to hear that I'm not the only one to have that problem. I had to go up to US3 needles/3.25mm to get gauge for my Brethren Socks. [And gauge is Very important with that design.] However, I finished them last night and am so pleased with how they turned out I plan to knit another pair soon. Just not right away. For socks, I wholeheartedly agree with using a cable needle of some sort - as you point out, it is too easy to drop stitches otherwise.
Part of my problem is that we don't have 2.75mm needles here. For 72-stitch socks I usually get perfect fit with 2mm needles, and 68 stitches with 2.5. So I went ahead and used a 2.5mm needle and figured that the cables would make up for the lack of stretch. They did, and then some. So now I'm using a set of bamboo 3mm needles, which is working perfectly. Just got past the gusset decreases an tried it on, it fits great.
Dropping stitches with fingering-weight yarn is a major pain. As is going back and surgically correcting a wrong cable. Which I've done twice. But I have perfected my technique for doing so! :D
I could have gotten by with 3mm - maybe. I went up to the 3.25 to be certain of a good fit as I have a tendency to knit tighter on socks because of my preference for a very dense gauge. Plus, they were an older lucite set of needles and I did that to ensure I wouldn't get heavy-handed with the knitting...I didn't want to snap one. Right now, I'm trying a pair of my "everyday" socks on 2.75mm HiyaHiya circulars I just bought. It will be interesting to see how they knit up since I usually go with 3mm for all of those, using a sport weight yarn.
Never brave enough to surgically repair a wrong cable...afraid of dropping stitches. Heavens knows, it's a big enough pain to unknit everything to get there without the added fuss of picking up dropped loops.
Your hat looks very pretty; it's going to be spectacular when you're done. Do you use a cable needle? I find for me it's much faster and easier to cable without a needle, but that's my personal preference.
I have instructions to cable without a CN, but I haven't tried it out yet - do you find it that much easier and do? Maybe I should take the time to figure it out because I am so over this damn hat.
I do. Messing with a cable needle to me seems time consuming and fiddly; it's much easier for me to just slip the stitches, switch them and put them back on the left hand needle. Try doing a test swatch with the yarn you're using, and see how it works out for you.
Here's a video on knittinghelp.com that show's how I learned to do it:
After reading your comment I went directly to Youtube and found a couple of videos I was fine on the 4 stitch cables to the front but when they dropped down to 2 stitch cable there was only one row of straigh knit between them, the tension just got to be too much - once the stitch was off the needle it would disappear and out would come the crochet hook and the row with the cable to the back - just forget it. On ordinary cables when you've got 6 or 8 rows between the cable stitches and they aren't side by side this technique will be great. Thanks for the suggestion. I'm glad to know a new short cut.
That's basket woven to an extreme.
It might be a b**** to do but it sure looks good. It really is a mass of cables. Good luck
Were there any non-cable stitches? It looks pretty much like it's cable upon cable. Where did you get the pattern?
You get to knit like three rows straight then the cable row is cable of cable after cable. The worst is doing the C2B's and C2F's - so tedious. I realized last night that five rows back I had done a row of C2F's that should have been C2B's, knitting these buggers is bad enough but tinking them- OMG! This is way too much effort for a frigging hat!
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