Edgings (sometimes called borders) are panels used to frame shawls in knitting: most knitted shawls have a kind of main shawl body, and an edging.
Usually, an edging is the last step in shawl knitting. It can be worked in the same direction as the main shawl body, or it can be worked sideways.
How To Knit Edgings
How your edging is worked best depends on the shawl shape you’re working on, and the chosen knitting direction (square shawls can be worked in different directions, for example – feel free to browse my free Shawl Design Course for details on shawl shapes and their construction methods).
Two examples are given below: the edgings for a square shawl worked center out and for a triangle shawl worked bottom-up.
How To Knit Edgings in Square Shawls
The edgings of square shawls finalizes the shawl and is present on all four sides. It can be worked in the same direction as the shawl itself – in rounds, with paired increases at the corners – or sideways. The increase rate at the corners is the same as for the main body: two stitches per panel every other row (the shawl outlined below, and square shawls in general, have four 90° panels).
An outline for the construction of a triangle shawl worked bottom-up is shown below. Basically, the edgings on both sides are worked at the same time as the shawl body, the upper side edging (border) is worked last.
It can be worked sideways or in the same direction as the main shawl body. When working the latter, just continue straight in your edging or border pattern until your desired border width is reached.
When working borders sideways, you need to cast on the number of border stitches (the desired border height) after finishing the shawl, then working the edging back and forth (in the schematic below this would be working vertically). At the same time, on every right side row, knit one stitch of the main shawl body together with the innermost edging stitch to attach the border to the shawl body.
We all love to use different knitting stitch patterns in our knitting projects – we’re bored with knitting garter stitch scarves after a while, aren’t we? This is where stitch patterns become interesting – so how to find, choose and use them in your knitting projects?
Stitch dictionaries are what the name suggests: dictionaries for knitting patterns. They usually come with either charts or written instructions, or ideally both, and pictures of the result (a swatch).
The ones I use most are Barbara Walker’s Treasury of Knitting Patterns (all volumes), the Estonian stitch dictionary Pitsilised Koekirjad by Leili Reiman, and some Austrian local publications (the latter mostly for my Alpine knitting patterns).
Knitting Stitch Patterns On The Net
Here’s a list of free stitch pattern resources on the net for you to start browsing: A (W) denotes written instructions, (C) denotes charts, and (I) means there are images for each stitch pattern.
If you happen to be a sock knitter, you have to face one question sooner or later: which heel should I choose for my socks? There’s more than one way to knit sock heels each having its advantages and disadvantages. So when to choose which one?
Sock Heel Constructions Methods
Standard Flap Heel
The standard flap heel is the most commonly method used to knit sock heels for knitters who prefer knitting without short rows. (There are variants using a few short rows to turn the heel, though.)
Flap heels are shaped using gusset inserts and most suitable for feet with large insteps. Prominent examples include socks for men, they almost always use flap heels.
Toe-Up Flap Heel
The same principles apply for toe-up flap heels – they use gussets too and are suitable for larger feet and/or feet with large insteps.
The Dutch Heel
Also known as the Square Heel, the Dutch Heel comes without short rows. The main feature are visible, straight lines at the bottom oh the heel and – obviously! – it’s square shape. As there are almost no gusset stitches, Dutch heels are suitable for feet on the smaller side of the spectrum.
German Short Row Heels
The most common method of working short row sock heels are German short row heels, also known as the Boomerang or Kylie Heel, or as Bumerangferse (the German word for it). Main features: it can be worked as an afterthought heel, has a snuggle fit and is easy to knit if you know how to work short rows. It can be worked on any number of stitches.
German short row heels do not feature additional stitches at the instep which makes them the perfect heel for narrow feet or for kids and toddlers.
There are a myriad of other methods, for example the hat heel, or socks worked on the bias, or sideways too. Have a look at my post about sock heels – 5 Ways to Knit Sock Heels – for more details on those.
Whenever I ask you for taking surveys here or on my mailing lists I’m bewildered either how close your answers match my expectations, or the exact opposite: how different your answers are from what I anticipated. Nevertheless it’s a tremendous source of inspiration every single time.
A few days ago, I asked my readers what’s their number one ingredient for the ultimate reference book on sock knitting.
Asking For It Means Being Surprised – And Learning Lots
What I expected: heels and how to knit them, different methods for toe constructions, how to adjust patterns for better fit, sizing issues, conversion tables for sock and shoe sizes, and knitting techniques related to sock knitting – the advanced end of the spectrum (like short rows) when it comes to techniques, not basic ones; and of course pattern templates and example patterns.
What I got: well, see for yourself.
What You Want to See in the Ultimate Sock Knitting Book
Lots of techniques.(Expected)
This includes construction methods for different sock parts, working magic loop (two at a time), knitting socks toe-up, tutorials on knitting short rows – all kinds of techniques on the rather advanced side of the spectrum.
As these advanced techniques used in sock knitting are causing troubles for many knitters, this was no surprise to read and is already part of the book. Check!
You want to see lots of pictures and picture tutorials. (Now that’s interesting!)
The majority wants clear instructions (well, expected that) and – picture tutorials! Very interesting. I expected that in times where most knitters browse YouTube for knitting instructions – in fact, a whole new generation of knitters learned to knit not from their mothers and grandmothers like I did, but teaching themselves online – books with picture tutorials were some kind of outdated.
Seems like I have been wrong. Adding an item to my To-Do list.
Conversion and sizing charts: check. (Expected)
Patterns and pattern templates: check. (Expected)
Honestly, I thought more people would state they want patterns as their number one wish, but that’s not the case.
Adjustments: check. (Expected)
Heels: check. (Expected)
Basic knitting techniques: seriously? It’s the ultimate sock knitting book, not the ultimate book on learning how to knit – that’s what I thought. But many people mentioned them, so I guess I have to reconsider this!