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A blog for my knitting, spinning, quilting, violin-playing, or whatever else floats my boat

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

Cable Surgery

As a continuation of the theme from 'Toe Transplants' I thought I'd show this one too - my method for fixing a miss-crossed (or just missed) cable.

1. Discover you went too many rounds before you executed your cable about 5 rounds ago.
2. Cry (or swear) - depending on your temperament.
2.a. Decide that, in future, you shouldn't drink wine with dinner and then attempt to knit anything more complicated than a garter-stitch scarf.
3. Decide that, even though no-one will ever notice, you'll know deep within your heart that it's wrong and you just can't live with that.
4. Decide that dropping just the cable and re-doing it will be preferable to ripping back to the mistake and re-knitting the last 1/2 inch of your sock. Besides, this is a great opportunity to document how to fix these things. (This decision may have been influenced by the glass of wine earlier.)
5. Assemble your materials - the offending sock, several smaller dpns (I used some 2mms), a small crochet hook, a really good light. A glass of wine is optional - but you should probably wait until afterwards - see 2.a. above.
6. Isolate the offending stitches (I included the purl stitches on either side) and remove them from the needle.
7. Carefully, drop those stitches until you get down past the mistake. You'll have all those wonderful loops of yarn hanging around - don't worry, we'll deal with those later.
8. Take that smaller dpn and pick up your live stitches.
9. I took it back to the row I should have cabled on, so I went ahead and swapped the arrangement of the stitches so the cabling cross is on the needle in the right order. This is similar to 'cabling without a cable needle' (that link is to WendyKnits' wonderful tutorial).
10. At this point you've got a choice - you can re-knit each row, using the loop of yarn hanging behind your work as your working yarn (be sure to use your smaller dpns for this). Or you can use your crochet hook to pick up each individual stitch row by row (rather like picking up a dropped stitch). Since I didn't have a lot of stitches or a lot of rows, I opted for the crochet hook method. I also didn't have any other cable crossing to worry about. If I had, I would have probably used the knitting method.
11. Carefully pick up one stitch at a time, starting along one edge, and work it up to the top using the loops of yarn in the back of your work. After each stitch, gently snug the work up to your existing knitting.
12. The purl rows were easier to pick up from the back side of my work.
13. Check the work carefully to make sure you got it right this time.
14. Of course, since you made the same mistake on both sides of your sock you get to do this all over again!

Re-knitting the rounds may be an easier option, but knowing how to do just the cable section is real handy when you're working on a complicated Aran sweater with 220 stitches on each round and you find that you crossed a cable in the wrong direction about 20 rounds ago. (Ask me how I know.) In that case, I re-knit each row of the cable section, making all the cabling crossings as they came up.

After you're all done, pat yourself on the back (and have that glass of wine).

Look! She's almost a lap kitty now! The paws and elbows are on my lap! It only took 2 1/2 years!


Blogger Brigitte said...

Cynthia, that's amazing! I would have ripped it out myself... :D

5:47 AM  
Blogger Lorraine said...

Cynthia- I'm taking note that step 2 is compulsory- swearing is a must.

Awww- your getting Kitty love!

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Carrie K said...

Ooh, she's practically there! Perched on you like that. Silly kitty.

Good job with the cable repair! I prefer crying while swearing.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Holly Jo said...

I agree. Always better to learn fixing things on items like socks instead of big beautiful things that make you cry when you mess up.

I am JEALOUS your cat is not a lap kitty. My cat is IRRITATING when I am knitting - pokes her head up between me and my knitting. Pet me, Mom. NOW!

8:15 PM  
Anonymous Dipsy said...

Oh, this is perfect! What a fantastic idea! I'd so have ripped it out myself, but this is definitely worth a try! And I'm totally with you with the swearing ;)

1:08 AM  
Anonymous Tracey said...

As per item number 2. Can we both cry and swear simultaneously?

12:21 PM  
Anonymous Rebekah said...

Great fix! I prefer Vodka Sours though, I hope that works okay with the fix.

2:40 PM  

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