Thinking Outside the Box (Stitches West, classes part 1)

On Saturday, I took “Engineering with Entrelac”, taught by Joan Schrouder. It was my first attempt at it, but I picked it up really quickly. More than just an introduction to Entrelac, the class was geared towards showing how you can use the natural shape of the squares to accomplish a number of things in a garment. For one thing, it lends itself naturally to knitting in the round, so with a little thought, a pattern doesn’t have to be made in pieces and seamed.

She also showed us how we can design garments from scratch using a few calculations with our gauge and how to best attempt using up small amounts of yarn with the technique. She also included instructions on knitting backwards, which I attempted for a few rows. I’d need to play around with technique a little, but I don’t mind turning my work a lot, so maybe I won’t.

In class, we started a little 3-square diameter tube. After the first round with an 8×16 footprint (the cream), we decreased to a 6×12 footprint and continued. I’m generally happy with my first attempt. There’s some holes at the joins that I think could be corrected with tighter stitches. And I was knitting fast and dirty, so it’s a little sloppy overall. Here it is (note: it’s sitting on a 20oz Pepsi bottle, so you can see how small it is):

There were two striking garments that she showed us.

One was a sweater she made in two different types of yarns in the same variegated colorway. The look of the garment was a uniform color, but the two different yarns created interest with the different textures.

The other was a hat that came from a Meg Swanson pattern in an old newsletter. It was several rows of entrelac in the round, and the crown was 8 squares joined together in a slightly different way. I want that pattern! Because it would look stunning with the Danica scarf from Knitty.


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