Knit Along: Traveling Vines Scarf From Magpie Yarns - Day 6 | Author Allie Pleiter

Knit Along: Traveling Vines Scarf from Magpie Yarns - Day 6

A nifty new trick...

Last weekend was knitting heaven. Sure, the meetings were long, but I had my knitting. As you’ve heard me say before, knitting improves my ability to absorb whatever it is you’re trying to tell me. Especially if it takes a long time to deliver your message. I visited a charming yarn shop you’ll hear about in a future episode, I ate good food with good people, made important plans, and had fun.

And got to the final yards--literally--of my Traveling Vines Scarf. Now this is one of those “knit til it’s done” patterns, where you’re not working to hit a specific length, nor even to a specific row in a repeat, you just go until you’re done. Those are nice, but they always make me nervous. I’m too much of a plan-ahead person not to worry that I’ll run out of yarn before I do the final four rows of garter stitch the pattern calls for.

But this time? I’m cool as a cucumber. Why? Because I learned the niftiest little trick at a cast on class at my local knitting store. A finishing trick in a cast on class? It’s not as odd as you’d think. We were talking about the strengths and weaknesses of the long-tail cast-on, which inevitably led to the dilemma of how long of a tail is long enough? Our teacher showed us the following technique to make sure you’ve got all the yarn you need:

Knit Along: Traveling Vines Scarf from Magpie Yarns - Day 6 4First, wrap your yarn ten times around your needle. That’s a fairly accurate estimate of the yarn needed for ten stitches. Now, unwrap that yarn, and you’ve got a specific length of yarn to produce ten stitches. Simply fold that length back on itself the number of stitches in your row times the number of rows.

Let me explain in detail. For this project, each row is thirty stitches. I fished around in the middle of my ball to find the inner end of my yarn. Because it’s a workable number, I wrapped thirty times to get my length (this wouldn’t work with a 90 stitch row for obvious reasons). Since I know I have four rows of garter stitch to save up for at the end of my scarf, I folded up four times my initial length. I put a simple slip knot at that length--plus a little extra for added insurance--as my signal. Now, since this pattern tells me I can stop on essentially any row, I can just knit happily along until I get to my knot, then I know it’s time to start my four garter rows. No stress, no worries. And I get to use every delectable inch of this yarn--gotta love that.

I’ll be binding off any minute now. Don’t worry, I’ll make sure you get a glimpse of the finished product.

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