Smokey ZickZacks–Kitchener Stitch

Well, here I am at the Kitchener stitch finale of Natalia Vasilieva’s Smokey ZickZacks (page 140 of New Directions in Sock Knitting).

The knitting was relatively easy–a total of 70 rows of mostly garter stitch for my size. I like Kitchener stitch yet have been dreading this part of the sock. The double increases and decreases are to be included in the Kitchener stitch. Fortunately, detailed illustrations are shown on page 149.

To begin, I knitted 12 stitches, tied a knot, then unknit these stitches to figure out how much yarn tail I’ll need to Kitchener 12 stitches. I’ll multiply this length by 10 to determine the length I’ll need to thread on a tapestry needle to Kitchener the entire row of 120 stitches.

I folded the piece in half so that the provisional cast-on was just above the live stitches on my working needle. I worked with the right side of both edges facing me. I threaded the long tail on a tapestry needle and followed the illustration on page 149 to get started by bringing the tapestry needle up through the first cast-on stitch, then down into the next cast-on stitch. Then I followed the sequence for Kitchener stitch on garter stitch (shown here after a couple of inches have been Kitchenered).

Step 1 (below left): Bring the tapestry up through the first live stitch.

Step 2 (below right): Bring the tapestry needle up through the same cast-on stitch entered most recently.











Step 3 (below left): Bring tapestry down through the next cast-on stitch.

Step 4 (below right): Bring tapestry needle down into the same live stitch entered in Step 2.










I tried my best to follow the illustrations on page 149 for working Kitchener stitch on the double increases, double decreases, and single decreses, but between the dark yarn, thick provisional yarn, and poor lighting (and maybe a bit of denseness on my part), I gave up on the fancy stitches and just worked regular Kitchener stitch across the entire row.

As suggested in the instructions, I left the waste yarn in the cast-on stitches as I worked. After a couple of inches, I pulled some out to make sure the grafting worked. I’m glad that I did! I ran into a snag at the second double decrease (above right) and had to cut the waste yarn to proceed (below right).










As I made my way across the foot, I couldn’t tell that the look of my sock suffered much from my working simple Kitchener stitch for garter stitch instead of adding the increase and decrease gymnastics.

Stitch by stitch, the odd piece of knitting is taking the shape of a sock!