Saturday, September 26, 2009


Now, very rarely, if at all, has my response to anything knitting-related been "Ewwww". I've said, "Awwww," and "Ohhhh," and "Ughhhh," but not "Ewwww."

Not long ago, though, I was listening to a knitting podcast about ways to join new yarn in a knitted piece. You can simply loop the new yarn around the need and begin knitting with it, which can be a little unwieldy and does leave ends to be woven in later. You can tie the new yarn and the old yarn together, but then there's no telling whether the knot is going to end up on the front or back of the piece as you go, and you still have ends to worry about. You can do a Russian join, in which you loop the new yarn and old yarn around each other, but as you knit both tails in you can end up with small section of the piece that's a little bulkier than the rest. Or you can spit splice.

Yes, spit splice. Here's where the "Ewwww" happened for me.

This works only with wool yarns, or yarns with high wool content (but not with superwash wool, which doesn't felt). Take your two ends, and fray them back an inch or so. Remove one of the plys on each end.

Gently twist the two ends together.

Spit into your palm. I know. I'm sorry. That's how you do it (although, my "Ewwww" factor being what it is, I discovered that warm tap water works just as well). Moisten the twisted ends of yarn, and gently rub them together between your palms.

The yarn felts ever so slightly, locking the fibers of both strands together and creating a strong and seamless join with no ends to weave in!


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