Several months ago, while reading Knitting in the Old Way, I came across Priscilla Gibson-Roberts’ description of how to work short-rows without wrapping the turning stitches.
It starts out in the usual fashion; every other row is worked a certain number of stitches shorter then the last. The usual short-row method requires the knitter to wrap the stitch at the turning point, but with this technique the first stitch after the turn is slipped and not wrapped. After all the short-rows have been worked, one last row is worked across all stitches, stopping at each of the row changes to close the gap by lifting the thread between the slipped stitch and it’s adjoining stitch onto the left needle to create a new stitch that will be knitted together with the next stitch.
Now doesn’t that sound complicated? It did to me, so at that time I filed it away in my mental knitting “to learn” list and didn’t give it much thought until I ran across Susanna Hansson's Japanese short-row class offered at Acorn Street. I jumped at the chance to learn this from a skilled instructor.
Despite only having three registered students, Susanna went ahead and taught the class last night. I’m so glad that it wasn’t cancelled. Susanna is a wonderful instructor. She clearly communicates not only how to do the technique but why we should follow each step. Upon finishing the swatch she encouraged us to stop and analyze our knitting to figure out why this brilliant technique works so well. I’d encourage anyone to take one of her classes.
If you would like to learn more about how to do Japanese short-rows and can’t take one of her classes, there are a few references on the subject.
Knitting in the Old Way by Pricilla A. Gibson-Roberts mentions how to work these short-rows on the knit side while working in the round.
Reader's Digest Knitter’s Handbook by Montse Stanley briefly mentions how to do this technique with a couple of pictures.