Last week we talked about the magic of the Magic Loop method for one at a time (1aat) items suchs as socks or sleeves. If you're not familiar with the technique, I recommend checking out the blog post and learning the ins and outs of the method.
This week we're stepping up our Magic Loop game!
Knitting socks or sleeves two at a time (2aat) is, in my not so humble opinion, the best way to avoid SSS (second sock syndrome) or SI (sleeve island). Both of these issues crop up when one of two identical items are complete and the thought of repeating the exact same steps again make us crazy! But, I have a solution that might just keep your fingers working without the dreaded SSS!
One of the first steps required for working socks 2aat, is splitting your skein of yarn. If you have two skeins to work with you can skip this step but many of us (myself included) buy 1 skein of yarn and must split the skein so we can manage our yarn more easily.
HOW TO SPLIT YOUR SKEIN/CAKE
Here’s how I split my skein, which was originally wound into 1 cake for the gauge swatch. I'll assume you know how to wind a skein into a cake. ;)
But! Let’s note first and foremost that you don’t HAVE to divide your cake. You can work from the inside and the outside of the same cake if you want but it’s common for the ends to get tangled with this method. And that causes a big headache. We’re going for ease-of-knitting with this step.
So, get your handy-dandy scale, preferably in grams since it’ll be more accurate than ounces, but either will work.
Step 1: Weigh your cake. Mine is 97g after knitting my gauge swatch which, when divided by 2 is 48.5g. I’ll aim for 48g and 49g cakes since half a gram is pretty hard to get to accurately.
Step 2: Leave your original cake on the scale and start winding with the scale counting down. When you get to half your original weight, cut that tail.
Step 3: I tend to re-wind my original cake as well so I have two even-sized cakes to knit from.
Casting On - Say WHAT?!
Here's where the order of operation is pretty darn important. We can't just cast on the total number of stitches for each sock one after another... we have to do sock 1, sock 2, sock 1. Stick with me here!
Let's assume you need to cast on 64 stitches for your sock.
Using the German Twisted Cast-On method for 2aat socks (or preferred stretchy cast-on), cast on as follows:
1) Half the total number of sts for Sock 1 from cake 1 (32 sts).
2) The total number of sts for Sock 2 from cake 2 (64 sts). Divide these sts evenly over the Front and Back needles per the Magic Loop method (see last weeks blog post).
3) Finally, cast on the remaining half of your stitches from cake 1 for Sock 1 (32 sts).
If you've had a chance to read last weeks post about Magic Loop 1aat then you likely can follow what I've said above. However! Casting on the remaining stitches for sock 1 is rpetty weird. So I've created a video tutorial to help you orient your stitches so you can start working those socks 2aat. Happy Sock'ing, my lovelies!!!