ALL BLOCKING FINISHED and on to RIBBING!
All of my blocking is finished, and oh my...my yarn is so soft and wuscious! The stitches have bloomed real nice! The cables look polished and spiffy. I'll be casting on for the ribbing today or Monday. Then on to seaming, and the zipper later in the week.
The picking up of stitches for the ribbing bands is critical to the overall polished appearance of the sweater.
Here are a few of my steps:
a) fold the left front in half vertically...place a pin on the fold line...then fold the halves in half again, and place pins on those spots, too. This evenly divides my left front into 4 sections. I'll do the same for the hood, and right front. May even consider folding those 4 in half, too, for 8 sections.
b) pick up the same number of stitches in each section of the left and right fronts
c) pick up 2 stitches for every 3 stitches on the garment edge...it produces a nice even rib, without rippling, or, distortion/curving (as stated previously, too many stitches produces rippling or waves...too few stitches produces distortion or curving)
d) I use a smallish Crystal Palace (smooth wth no bumps or thumb rests) bamboo crochet hook to pick up the stitches and load them onto my circ...picking up about 10 at a time onto the crochet hook before sliding them off at the other end and onto the circ, careful to situate them knitwise on the circ...I place red stitch markers for every 10 stitches, and blue stitch markers for the sections.
e) I like the picked up stitches to fit tight tight tight onto the circ...this will ensure that the picked up row isn't loosey-goosey looking as it lays between the actual garment and the ribbing. I load them onto the circ as tight as possible but still knitable. That's where KP OPTIONS are very helpful.
NOTE: If a section needs 24 stitches...then there will be two red markers marking the 2-10 sts...and 4 left over stitches will be alone just before the blue end-of-section marker.
This marking of stitches and sections for the picked-up row is very helpful, and reduces time spent counting and re-counting, or worse, guessing.
Anyhoo, I'll take a digital photo of my 'picked-up and stitch-markered' row for you and insert it later. When this row is all picked up...the next row begins the 2x2 rib pattern. I plan the bottom edges to end with K2 on the Right Side.
f) important not to scrimp with those last two knits at the bottom edges...I place the last picked up knit stitch over or a little beyond the edge. I like my last two K2's to be even steven with the bottom edges of the Right and Left Fronts. It's a pet peeve. My bad!