Monday, February 22, 2016

Flat Seam in 2x2 Ribbing
(Click on photos to enlarge)
I normally use 1x1 ribbing in my socks but I’ve had occasion to use a 2x2 for slippers, caps or mittens so I worked out a seam that is totally reversible and pretty good to look at.  It takes advantage of one of the Bickford methods which I am so fond of.  This is a particularly great seam for items like hats, socks or sleeve cuffs that may be folded over.  You may want to practice the technique before using it in the real thing, however it’s not hard at all once ya get into the groove.
The needle setup for this example is below.  The outermost needle on both sides must be on the main bed.  So plan your cast on accordingly.
.    . .     . .     . .     .  (Main Bed)
  . .    . .     . .     . .    (Ribber Bed) 

First off, you must be able to identify the loop stitches and the knot stitches along the side.  This seam is worked from the public side, so fold over the ribbing edges into a tube or butt up the edges of a flat garment.  My sample is intended to be a circular sock cuff so this is how I set up the needles on each bed of my machine.  I used my SK860 midgauge machine and Caron Simply Soft in this sample so the stitches would be more easily seen.  

So let’s get going on the technique.  You'll be working with the stitches on the outermost edges of your fabric.  From the top down, insert your needle and yarn thru a knot stitch and pull through.  Do not pull your stitching too tightly.  You are trying to match the stitch size of your knitting and you don't want your seam to pucker.


Then on the other side of the fabric, insert your needle and yarn from the bottom of the corresponding loop stitch and pull up.
On the same side, insert your needle from top down through the next knot stitch and pull yarn through.

On the other side of the fabric, insert your needle and yarn from the bottom of the next loop stitch and pull yarn up.  Continue in this manner for the full length of your seam.
When you get comfy with this method, you'll be able to go down thru the knot on one side and up thru the loop of the opposite side in one step. 

This seam is particularly nice for items or garments with foldover cuffs because the back side looks just as nice as the public side, with no bulky seam.  You won't have to turn your work and seam from one side for the cuff and the other side for the main fabric.