The Needle Emporium
Tips and Tricks
July 2009
In This Issue
Mattress Stitch
Websites to Visit
Happy Knitting!

Watch for further newsletters filled with 'Tips and Tricks' that will help with your knitting.

The information we are giving you is to help with techniques-making them easier.  If you have taken a class and the instructor has shown you something different and you like that method then please stick with it.  These are only suggestions.

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The number one complaint that I hear from customers is that they dislike/hate sewing their garments together.  I am going to start a series of emails with suggestions to follow while knitting that will make the finishing process easier.
This newsletter is going to talk about the basic mattress stitch.  The next newsletter will talk about increases and decreases.  Changing the techniques you are using can make all the difference in the finished product.

Mattress Stitch-Side Seams and Sleeve Seams
  • When knitting your garment, knit the first and last stitch of every row.  This will give you 'knots' running up the side of the garment.  Some knitters like to add an extra stitch to each edge.  This extra stitch will be knit on every row and won't affect your pattern.
  • When working the mattress stitch you will be working from the right side of your work. 
  • The two pieces that you are joining will lie side by side.
  • Start at the cast on edge and work towards the top.  This way your edges will always line up and you can fudge under the arms if necessary.
  • The whole edge stitch will be worked into your seam-you will be sewing inside the 'knots'.
  • Use a fresh piece of yarn for sewing.  Some instructions suggest using your tails to sew.  I like new pieces because if you need to take out what you have done then you can just pull and it is undone.  With your tails you will need to pick back to the beginning.
  • If your sweater was knit in a yarn that will break (Lopi, Noro) use a different yarn for sewing.  Cotton works well because it is hard to break.
  • Use a blunt tip needle-we like Clover's Bent Tip Needle.
  • Start on the right hand piece and bring your needle up from the back to the front
  • Jump to the left hand piece and take your needle down one hole and up the next hole.
  • Jump back to the right hand piece and take your needle down the same hole you came up from.  Come up the next hole.
  • Continue working from side to side for about an inch and then pull the yarn.  Now your seam is tight.
  • Continue working until your seam is finished. 
Some websites to check out

Happy Knitting,
Julie Schilthuis
The Needle Emporium