Starting to swing

Swing knitting (or should that be swingTM knitting?) is something I’ve been meaning to try for a while.  It’s a short row technique that involves knitting blocks of colour one by one to build up a shape, whether that shape be more or less rectangular – like the front or back of a jumper – or something more curvy and dramatic.  The prime example of the latter is a fabulous shawl called Dreambird, which is one of those immensely popular designs on Ravelry that thousands of people have knitted.

Well, seeing as I didn’t have anything on my needles after finishing a cardigan, I thought I’d have a go at a simple swing project.  I chose Short Wave Mitts and I dug out some fluffy green mohair and a wool blend DK to use.  They’ve both been in my yarn stash for longer than I care to remember.

The pattern is written for 4-ply (fingering) yarn, but the design gives brief instructions for converting it to suit DK.  I’m sure the instructions make sense if you’ve already knitted a 4-ply pair, or anything else swingy.  But they took some fathoming out for me.  I got there eventually though.  This is how the first mitt looked before grafting the longitudinal seam and knitting the thumb.

Green mohair mitts - flatThe top right green section was the first one knitted, then the next three in turn, moving in a southwesterly direction (if you see what I mean).   That took me to the halfway point, after which I worked the green section immediately below the 4th green one, followed by the remaining 3, working in a southeasterly direction to finish at bottom right.

After completing the first mitt it looks like this:

Finished green mohair mittIt still needs blocking to coax it into a more rectangular shape, but that can wait until I’ve made its twin.

It really wasn’t that difficult, and quite logical once I’d got into the swing of it (gedditt???).  It inspired me to have a go at making a wavy, lens-like shape in a plain background, and then a wavy line.

swing swatch 1swing swatch 2

The line was less successful as the wraps at the end of each short row are very obvious when wrapping a stitch in the opposite colour.  I had another attempt, this time using German short rows.

swing swatch 3That was better, but not really good enough to use, say, round the yoke of a sweater.  Further experimentation required.


About yorkshirecrafter

I live and work in West Yorkshire.  I've always enjoyed crafts of all types, from woodwork to lace-making.  I also enjoy anything mathematical, which makes knitting a favourite pastime, especially complicated designs.  I've been advising businesses and industry on environmental matters for 30 years and also have an interest in green living, especially where it saves me money. I live with my husband and our Maine Coon in a 100-year-old cottage that constantly needs something doing to it.  Fortunately, I enjoy DIY too.
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3 Responses to Starting to swing

  1. MrsCraft says:

    New techniques are always good to learn, in some ways having a finished product is just an added bonus to the learning process. I like the mitts so far 😊

    • I do like to produce something useful if I can, even if it’s not something I will use myself. I expect these mitts will end up at a local charity shop. The mohair fluff is making me sneeze. I don’t know how I ever managed to wear mohair jumpers in the 80s.

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