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Wasting away

October 02 2012 – thisisknit

You know that part of a pattern where you're instructed to "put the next (however many) stitches on waste yarn", putting them aside to be worked later? The part where you have to put down the knitting and find the yarn needle, only to find it's disappeared down the sofa cushions? Well, we've come across a way to simplify the process, and here's how. This technique works if you're using Knitpro interchangeable needles, which have the little tightening hole in the metal join. (It's the hole that you use the little allen key in - see our blog post here for details). You'll also need some fairly fine waste yarn; crochet cotton or dental floss will work beautifully. First, thread your waste yarn through the little hole. Then just work the stitches that you're told to put aside in a completely unremarkable fashion. When you reach the end of the waste-yarn stitches, your work will look rather like this: Slip the stitches you've just worked back onto the cable a little and pull the waste yarn free on the left hand side of the work. At this point, it's going right through the stitches you just worked, running alongside the cable. Unthread the waste yarn from the wee hole in the needle, leaving the stitches sitting happily on the cable and the waste yarn. Now just slip the needle rightwards out of the stitches, leaving the waste yarn behind. For safety's sake, tie the two ends of the waste yarn together so it can't try to work out of the stitches later. And that's it! That's your stitches on waste yarn without a yarn needle. If you have more stitches to put aside for later, then repeat the process. The knitting being worked on here is a Garter Yoke Baby Cardigan, a terribly doty pattern which is free on Ravelry, and the yarn is Debbie Bliss Rialto DK - machine washable and cosy. The recipient isn't born yet, but there's a knitted snuggle waiting for him.

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