, , , , ,

In Celeste’s last post she mentioned that she knit her beautiful Aidez all in one piece.  This means altering the pattern a little bit.  Tammy asks: “I just started knitting Aidez for my daughter. How did you change it to knit it in one piece?”  Since I just cast on for an Aidez, myself, I thought I would elaborate on this point for WIP Wednesday!

First – why would we even want to alter a pattern to knit it in one piece?  Well, Celeste told me to!  I’ve been putting off knitting Aidez because I couldn’t decide on color and when I said I was going to cast on she said, “Knit it in one piece, it’s so fast!”  Though I usually enjoy knitting in pieces, I thought I would switch things up.

The Pros:
Less finishing work in the end
Less number of pieces can make a faster project
Less bulk where seams would be at the sides and underarms
Sleeves knit in the round means less turning to knit back and forth (and purling, in this pattern)

The Cons:
If you make a mistake you have a whole lot to pull out
Keeping track of the Right Front, Back and Left Front patterns
You may feel like the one BIG body piece is taking forever compared to pieces
The designer may have designed it in pieces for a specific reason you don’t realize until later on in your project

Please decide for yourself whether your pros outweigh your cons.  With a very popular pattern like Aidez you can investigate others’ notes on their Ravelry projects.  Don’t be afraid to try something new, though.  If you don’t like it you can always go back to your regularly scheduled programming.

Now, I could go through the pattern and give you exact numbers for exact rows on how to change it, but then you wouldn’t be able to use this information with your future projects.  So I’m going to write in more general terms, using Aidez as an example, and hope that it is useful for you.  Teach a man to fish!  ALSO – there are lot of words in this post.  Please remember that a lot of words does not automatically mean something is difficult!  It just means I want to make sure you have all the information you need.  I’d put the difficulty level of this project at intermediate, don’t be afraid of it.

Pattern: Aidez, designed by Cirilia Rose Yarn: Peruvia Quick, color 9186
Needles: US 9, 40″ circular needle
Note: I went down in needle size to get gauge and I am wet-felting the ends of my skeins together to reduce weaving in ends.

When a sweater is written in pieces that are meant to be seamed there is an assumption that your seaming method will use one stitch at either side of the seam.  To cast on for the body all in one piece, you should subtract these stitches, or risk changing the size of your sweater.

The Right Front has one side seam (1 stitch), the Back has two side seams (2 stitches) and the Left Front has one side seam (1 stitch).  To cast on for your size, ADD all the cast on numbers for your size for the three pieces, and then SUBTRACT 4 selvedge stitches.  If you have a simple cardigan with no stitch patterns, this is all you need.

For Aidez, you will have to pay close attention to your first few cabling rows.  You must be able to visualize that you are knitting across the pattern for the Right Front, Back and then Left Front, in order across the RS.  For your first RS row, you will knit the instructions for the Right Front, as written, until the end where you must subtract that seam stitch.  For the 40” size, you are instructed to K9, but I K8 – then place a marker for where the Right Front ends.  Then, you must subtract the seam stitch for either side of the Back.  For 40” size, you are instructed to start and end with K7 but I K6 – then place a marker for the end of the Back. To begin the Left Front you must subtract one last seam stitch.  For 40” size you are instructed to start with K9, but I K8.

If you place markers to keep track of all of the cable patterns as you progress vertically, then you no longer have to worry about counting or not counting those seam stitches.  Once you get started don’t even think about it anymore!  Just cable, cable, cable all the way up to the armholes.

If you’re like me, you might have to draw yourself a map so you’re not flipping pages as you get settled into your patterns.  Believe it or not, these scribbles tell me the order of the cables and number of stitches across the row.  If you have a good close-up photo of the pattern you are knitting and some stitch markers, that can take the place of these scribbles.

So – keep on knitting until you get to the armholes.  What happens when you get there?  Well, put the body on hold and knit the sleeves in the round up to the armholes.  Then you knit the sleeves and the body together.  Since I’m such a wordy writer and this post is already huge, I’ll tell you how to do that in Episode II, The Aidez Strikes Back.