We’re doing it again: we’re both doing the same thing at the same time, without having discussed it at all. We are getting closer and closer to total mind meld.
Needless to say, I love! luv! lurve! the i-cord edging of your sheep beauty pageant in blanket form. It is so satisfying, and elevating, to apply i-cord to something. I would apply it to my entire household if I could. It couldn’t hurt, you know? Tidy edges make for a happy life, especially if you are a blanket.
I, too, am embarking on an i-cord application journey, for my Trellis Top. Before digging in, though, I got waylaid by deep, soulful reflection on how I want to do it.
The pattern calls for picking up stitches all the way around the top—and making the buttonholes as you go. Although my Trellis Top is not as big as a blanket, it’s pretty big. Picking up stitches all the way around would require either a couple of long-cabled circular needles, or those gizmos that connect up interchangeable needle cords. News that will surprise no one: I can’t find my connector gizmos. They likely are embedded in large knitting projects that are not accessible to me at the present time.
It’s pretty big.
Here’s where my path diverges from the Trellis Top pattern instructions. When I’m applying i-cord edging to a blanket, I don’t pick up all the stitches first. Instead, I pick up the stitches one by one, and apply the i-cord as I go. This way I can do it with two short needles, be they dpns or straights. It’s just less of a pfaff, somehow. I can see how others might prefer to pick up all the stitches first, and then just i-cord away, without pausing to pick up each edge stitch. But both methods end up with the same result. It’s the knitter’s choice, and my inclination is to do it the way I’m already comfortable doing it.
I get to warm up My i-cord chops by first applying it all the way around the neck opening. FUN!
If you’d like to see a small-format example of this pick-up-as-you-go method, Jen Arnall-Culliford has made a very useful video demonstrating how to join the front and back of a toy mouse’s ears with applied i-cord:
I’m going to do it the way Jen demonstrates, with two differences: I’ll be picking up stitches through just one layer of fabric, and I prefer to work the final stitch as a knit 2 together through the back loops instead of a plain knit 2 together.
In the MDK Shop
If you’d like written-out instructions on how to apply i-cord while picking up stitches as you go, we provide them in MDK Field Guide Nos. 1, 4, and 13.
For ease of reference, here are links to Carol Feller’s two videos on working the applied i-cord and buttonholes for the Trellis Top.
I’ll be glued to Carol’s method for both the pick-up ratio for the i-cord, and for placement and method for the buttonholes. I’ll have to edge the inside of the buttonholes a little differently than the way Carol does it, since I won’t have picked-up stitches there to bind off, but I think I can do it easily by just picking up those few stitches and binding them off when I get there. This will create 2 new ends for each buttonhole, which can easily be whisked into the i-cord and hidden there for all time.
In knitting, there’s often more than one way to do a thing, and you get to do it the way you like best.