I have reached the neck shaping on the fairisle jumper. It is almost complete. I decided that I would have the raglan shaping, as it is simple and fits well. I forgot that meant that each time I began a new pattern I would have to establish four times in the round just where the pattern needed to begin in order to be aligned with the previous repetitions of the pattern. It was worth the effort. I don’t like sewing up sloped pieces of knitting. Straight edges and mattress stitch are easy. Slopes are not so bad if there are two plain stitches adjacent to the edge of the piece and the increases or decreases have been worked within that edge (eg: k2, inc 1, k to last 2 sts, inc 1, k2), whereas if the increases or decreases are closer to the edge, I find it impossible to sew the seam properly, and end up with excess fabric on one side of the seam.
I am shaping the neck the way I have shaped necks for over ten years. I like a high-but-not-choking neck, so only 12 rows of shaping. On a circular needle, the method is an excuse to use my old Snoopy earrings as stitch markers. They are easy to place each side of the front neck stitches that are “on a holder” (the cable of the circular needle), and I just shift them along with each row. Instead of casting off stitches, I slip the first stitch of the row, then knit along, and move the marker a stitch or two so that I don’t knit so far on the next round.
When I knit the neckband, I work the stitches in that region a bit strangely, sometimes knitting through two stitches together, not always the active stitches on the needle either. Just whatever it takes to eliminate holes between the body of the jumper and the neckband. It works for me, but is impossible for me to explain clearly.