This week’s tips are pretty quick – but hopefully will help you get on with joining your body and sleeves together into a cardigan.
When you’re ready to join to work the armholes, you should have three pieces in front of you: 2 sleeves and your body piece.
(I find circular needles are great for storing sleeves, rather than waste yarn – have a go. When you’re ready to join, you can knit straight off the needles – doesn’t matter what needle size they are.)
Your sleeves are exactly alike, so it doesn’t matter which sleeve you join in first, just make sure you put the side with the increases on the armhole side. If you’ve left your stitch markers in this will be easy to do.
If you just work the joining round as written, you will end up with all your pieces joined together, however I always find talking things through – and a few visual illustrations – very helpful. Here is what we’re aiming for…
As we’ve been working on a cardigan, you will start at the front opening of the body, with the RS facing you. Refer to your notes to see what Row of the cable pattern you finished the body on. You will work the next row in the cable pattern as you work across the various body sections.
When you reach the correct number of sts before your side seam marker you will pause – place armhole sts from both the body and the first sleeve onto waste yarn or locking stitch markers.
Then, place a marker for your armhole decreases.
Knit across all sleeve sts (as all your armhole sts have already been set aside).
Place marker for your armhole decreases.
Work across the Body stitches again (this is the back of the cardigan), working the same row of the cable pattern as on the front of the Body. Work up to the correct number of stitches before your side seam again – place the body and sleeve stitches indicated onto waste yarn/locking stitch markers.
Place a marker for your armhole decreases.
Knit across all sleeve sts, then place another armhole marker.
Work across remaining Body stitches (using correct row of cable pattern), to end of row.
You’re now joined in the round.
Here’s a picture of how I use locking stitch markers (instead of waste yarn) for the armhole stitches. When you’re ready to finish your underarm stitches, it is really simple to transfer stitches to your needles again. (If you don’t have locking stitch markers, a stitch holder or some slippery, finer yarn would be useful to use as waste yarn.)