Monday, November 01, 2010

What Does SSK Mean?

Ewe Can Knit



Welcome to our new tips, tricks and techniques column, “Ewe Can
Knit” by Mary G.  Each newsletter Mary
will keep you informed with a stitch or knitting technique.  She will also answer your questions and would
love to hear from you.  Please contact us

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Mary is putting together her own blog and will give you more
information on that in a future newsletter.
In the meantime, learn about SSK!


Slip, Knit (SSK)

Slip, slip, knit (or SSK in its abbreviated form) is a left
leaning decrease.  In other words, when
the stitch is executed properly you should see the stitch take a slightly left
leaning tilt.  You will often see SSK
paired with K2tog (the right leaning version) at neck and armhole edgings and
in lace patterns. 

The stitch is executed as follows:

Using your right needle, slip the next stitch on the left needle
AS THOUGH TO KNIT onto the right needle. (See picture 1). Repeat this with the
following stitch.  You will now have two
slipped stitches on the right needle. (See picture 2)

Insert the left needle into the front of these two stitches
(Picture 3) and knit the two stitches together.
(Picture 4)

The reason we slip the stitches as though to knit is that this
causes the stitches to twist slightly.
This allows the two stitches to “sit” on each other in a neater
fashion.  Try doing the swatch below
using Slip as though to Purl and see the difference in the stitch. Slipping as
though the knit gives a cleaner finish to the stitch.   Ofcourse, if the pattern calls for you to slip
as though to purl then this is what you would do.

Tip:  Whenever possible do decreases in one or two
stitches from the edge where decreases are required at the sides of a garment
(for example at side seams).  This will
make it easier for you so sew the seams together later without the extra
“lumps” that decreases sometimes make.
Also, when knitting the stitches together, try to pull the yarn slightly
tighter so that the stitches don’t get too big.
The resulting stitch should match the gauge as closely as possible to
the rest of your knitting.

Swatch:  Try the slip, slip, knit
decrease by knitting the following swatch.

Using a light color, plain yarn, CO about 20 sts.

Using stockinette stitch (knit one row, purl one row), knit for
about an inch ending with a wrong side row.

Row 1: (RS) – Knit two stitches, ssk, knit to the end of the row

Row 2: (WS) – Purl across

Repeat rows 1 and 2 until you have decreased at least 5

Bind off.

Picture 5

You can clearly see the stitches leaning to the left.  Keep this swatch as a reminder.

Trick:  Get confused which decrease leans to the left
and which leans to the right?Here’s a little trick to help you remember.  Write out the two abbreviations, SSK and
K2tog.  Draw a straight line through the
back of the S and a straight line through the back of the 2.  The line through the S points left, the line
through the 2 points right!  Ta Da! Good
luck and we look forward to hearing from you.

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