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Shaping Your Knitting with Wrap-and-Turn Short Rows

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The wedge-shaped sections of reverse stockinette stitch are key to making our Great Pumpkin Pouf look like a pumpkin. While the knitting is just simple knits and purl, the shaping requires a technique that may be new to you – short rows.

With this technique, you stop and turn the work before reaching the end of a row, so there are more rows in the middle of the piece than at the sides. To prevent holes from forming when the work is turned, you’ll use a maneuver called wrap and turn (w&t). Here are the step by step directions:

Knit or purl the specified number of stitches. You will not be at the end of the row. Move the yarn to the Wrong Side of the work. {illus.1}

Slip the next stitch to the right-hand needle. {Illus.2}

Move the yarn between the needle tips to the Right Side of the work. {Illus.3}

Slip the stitch back to the left-hand needle. {Illus.4}

Turn work, and continue with the next row. {Illus.5}

You have wrapped the working yarn around an unworked stitch, preventing the formation of a hole at the point where you turn the work. When you encounter this wrapped stitch on a subsequent row, just knit or purl it normally, ignoring the wrap. There is no need to do anything to disguise the wrap; it blends in with the texture of the Reverse Stockinette stitch.

Once you’ve mastered the wrap and turn short row technique, you’ll be surprised how often it pops up in patterns. Short rows are often used to create bust darts in sweaters or heels in some kinds of socks.


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