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When we last left our sock....we had 12(12,12,16,18,18)sts remaining. We were to sew or graft these together.
Grafting is the technique of weaving two sets of sts together with a needle and yarn to join them in a newly created-by-weaving knit stitch so that NO VISIBLE detection is possible. Very neat. Quite challenging at first. That's the bad news.
The good news is that you can skip the grafting if you are not inclined to learn it and
1. (this is very easy) Cut your yarn, leaving 12". Thread your darning needle with this yarn...run it through every stitch (starting with the next st presenting itself to be knit, had you continued on)...pull tightly so all the sts gather together and sew your end in for 6" in 3 different directions (more about this later).
2. Just bind off your toe sts together as follows (this is easy): put the first 6(6,6,8,9,9) sts on one needle (front), and the last 6(6,6,8,9,9)sts on another (back). Line them up side by side. Put them both in your left hand. With a third needle, * dig into the first knit st of both the FRONT and BACK needle together....yarn over the back of this strange conjunction and knit them together* At this point, there is one stitch on your third needle. Repeat * *. You now have 2 sts on your third needle. Pull the first one you had done over the second one and off the needle to bind off one. Now you are back to one st on your third needle. Repeat * *. There are 2 sts again.....Bind one off. Keep doing this until there is just one stitch left.....cut your yarn leaving 8". Darn in your end for 6" in 3 different directions.
3. The brave will GRAFT the stitches left together, resulting in a smooth and comfortable toe finish.
GRAFTING or Kitchener Stitch or Weaving
put the first 6(6,6,8,9,9)sts on one needle (front), and the last 6(6,6,8,9,9)sts on another (back). Cut your yarn leaving 24" and thread (darning) needle with it. Work from right to left.
On front needle:
1. Pass tapestry needle through as if to knit, drop st off needle
2. Pass tapestry needle through as if to purl, leave st on needle
On back needle:
1. Pass tapestry needle through as if to purl, drop st off needle
2. Pass tapestry needle through as if to knit, leave st on needle
That's it. Just remember to keep the tension loose.
There s a tendency for the outermost stitches to look like "ears". Yes, well... some folks make a career out of getting this to go away. The easiest way I have found for dealing with this is to twist completely the first and last sts of front and back needles before you start.
When you finish grafting across, you will need to DARN IN YOUR END. I do not put knots in my socks, but since I knit exclusively with natural fiber yarns, my yarns are not as slippery as some. Knots always seem to bother my feet somewhere at some point (remember...I am a Pisces and I can't stand that!) Slippery yarns (cotton comes to mind, as does superwash wool and acrylics/nylons/polyesters) may require some knots to keep the end stable.
I very much like the following method of hiding/stabilizing the end....picture a "Z" and darn in your end to make that shape on the inside of the sock, with each "zig" working over approximately 2" of fabric. Try to spear your inside "purl" bumps to hide the yarn...you can do so quite invisibly if you put your mind to it. Some folks swear by splitting stitches as they sew through and hiding yarn that way.
OK....you are DONE! Try it on...well?
Oh...you have to make the second sock. REMEMBER if you did anything out of sequence with the pattern, so you can repeat the fit with the second sock.
This material ©2000 Claudia Krisniski