Monday, November 4, 2013
Knitting Sound Bites
In a previous post I wrote about my aversion to knitting sound bites such as "row gauge doesn't matter".
One of the other phrases I hear about knitting is "it's a knit, it will stretch to fit".
This does have some truth because knits do stretch, however the real questions are: how much will a garment stretch, will the wearer look good and will they be comfortable? Unfortunately the knitter often stops at "it's a knit it, will stretch to fit". My concern with this sound bite is the limitations it creates.
Hand knit sleeves are created with symmetrical sleeve caps. The back of real arms are bigger than the front, for most garments the back does stretch enough for comfort and fit so the soundbite works.
Ladies with very curvaceous figures (over a B cup) will tell you their sweaters do not stretch enough to be flattering or comfortable. They tend to pull the hem of the garment up in the front. The fix to make these garments fit has been (in the knitting world) to add short rows.
There are a number of other solutions as well, which is why the sound bite bothers me. It limits our thinking. It stops us from searching for a solution. In the sewing world stretch is defined by a notation on the sewing pattern. In retail it's easy, if we put on a garment that is too tight we just don't buy it. Knitters need other solutions.
Related posts about alternatives to short rows are here and here.There is a photo here.