A lot of people seem to be wondering why I designed Halfdome to be knit flat. It’s a round item, after all, so knitting it in the round makes intuitive sense. I have some very good reasons for designing it flat, though, and I am now going to tell you what they are.
- Knitting stockinette stitch in the round is boring. Knit, knit, knit, knit, knit, knit, knit. Nary a purl in sight. Maybe it’s because I’m a bad buddhist and I haven’t fully accepted that boredom is a form of suffering, which comes from desire, which comes from a failure to recognize that the self is an illusion, or maybe it’s simply because I can’t read and knit at the same time, like my wife. Either way, endless rounds of knit stitches drive me bonkers.
- I like seaming.
- Stripes look funny when they’re knit in the round. I know there is a technique for preventing that little jog between color changes, but even the best examples I’ve seen don’t look as good as when that seam disappears and the stripes slide up together like teenagers on prom night.
- I prefer straight needles. I inherited my grandmother’s preference for straight metal needles (along with the needles themselves), and although I have a sizeable collection of circular needles, I don’t really like any of them. Their plastic wires never bend the way I want them to, I always feel like I’m struggling to point the needle in the right direction, and the spot where the needle joins the wire often features a yarn-snagging ridge. Addi Turbos are a lovely exception to these problems, but at sixteen bucks a shot, I’m not overhauling my circular needle collection any time soon.
- I’m lazy. Halfdome appeared in Knitty only this past summer, but I initially designed it about four years ago, when my relationship with double-pointed needles was on the rocks, George W. Bush was winding up for his catastrophic international blunder, and I hadn’t yet discovered the magic loop. Rather than going through the work of rewriting the pattern to be knit in the round (which Catherine has been kind enough to do) I sent Knitty the pattern as it was originally written.
All knitters have their quirks, and these are a few of mine. The great thing about getting your patterns published is that you get to revel in your own knitting quirks. The great thing about knitting in a free country is that you can ignore all of the knitting quirks you want.