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Wee Cria KAL — Separating Body and Sleeve sts

May 21, 2014

I hope the last post helped with the yoke set up. You may not be ready to separate out the sleeves, but don’t worry if you aren’t there just yet. There are no rules or deadlines for this KAL! Once you’ve finished working the sleeve shaping the fronts and back of the cardigan will be worked in stocking stitch, with garter stitch button bands.

The fifth stitch in when you start each row will be slipped purlwise with the working yarn at the right side (wyif or wyib) to help the garter stitch button bands lay flat. Depending on which size you’re making you’ll either have the third buttonhole coming up soon or already worked it, and you’ll have to decide if you’re continuing the buttonholes all the way down or sticking with just three at the top. 

Separating sleeve and body stitches

When it’s time to separate the body and sleeve stitches I like to gather a couple of things to get ready: some smooth yarn of a similar weight to the yarn I’m working with, a darning needle and some scissors.

You’ll want to make sure your two pieces of waste yarn are long enough to thread through the sleeve stitches and tie the ends together. For this cardigan I’d suggest between 8 and 10 inches. Thread your first piece of waste yarn and set it aside until you need it.  

Then follow the pattern directions for separating the stitches, the pattern instructs you to work to the first marker, cable cast on the underarm stitches and then slip the sleeve stitches on to the waste yarn. I prefer to do it the other way, slip the sleeve stitches to the waste yarn and tie the ends together to secure — you’ll ignore these held stitches until it’s time to work the sleeves — and then cable cast on the underarm stitches.

Slip sleeve stitches to waste yarn purlwise

The reason I do it that way is I tend work on shorter needles where the stitches are more bunched together, and I feel there’s less chance of the sleeve stitches falling off the left needle and more room to work. But it doesn’t make a difference to the end result, so it’s totally up to you. 

Cable cast on underarm stitches

When you’re working the cable cast on, turn the work so the wrong side is facing you and cable cast on the required number of stitches beside the front stitches you just worked. If you need a refresher on the cable cast on the video is here, cable cast on at 1:30.

Then turn the work back around and continue working across the back stitches to the next sleeve marker and then separate the second sleeve stitches from the body in the same manner.

Once the sleeve stitches are separated, you’ll really be able to see the cardigan shape emerge.

One thing to note! if you count the stitches on both fronts as split by the markers, the left front (or first set of stitches when you’re working the right side rows) will have one more stitch than the right front. This is correct. When you’re working right side (RS) rows think of the stitch just before the marker as the seam going down the sides of the cardigan, which you’ll be able to differentiate as it will be a purl stitch. The increases will be worked on either side of this stitch meaning that there will an equal amount of stitches on each front. It also means that we can write the pattern directions in a more concise manner.

Next up will be the pocket openings, I’ll post about that Monday which will hopefully give you lots of knitting time. We’ve updated the commenting system too so it will be easier to be notified if your comment or question has been answered, or you could join us over in the Ravelry thread.

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