OK, I got back to the hat that was making me crazy, actually managed to finish it. It’s not perfect, but I did it. Three things are wrong: (1) still dropping a stitch or two while in the DPN phase toward the end, (2) the color changes at the beginning of a new row look wonky (end of row slightly higher than the beginning of the row, and (3) no matter what I do, the join of the very first row on the circular needles looks funny, even though I pull it tight. Any advice? Thanks.
I have to say, my joins never look totally neat so I’m afraid I can’t really advise you on that, but I can help you with the colour changes.
Because knitting in the round isn’t technically round upon round upon round, it is more like knitting in a spiral, kind of like a spring, so if you can imagine that you can see how the end of one “round” would be higher than the beginning of that same “round”. What you need to do is a technique called the jogless jog. It will make your stripes look much neater and the colour switch will be all but un-noticeable.
Edited to add: I just found an article here: http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEfall03/FEATtheresa.html that gives loads of info about circular knitting, and also a few tips at the very bottom of the article for making the join neater.
Thanks for the info. I knew there had to be a trick to this somewhere!
For circular knitting, cast on one extra stitch. Then slip the first stitch on the right-hand needle to the left needle and knit it together with the one immediately to its left (the one that would normally be your first stitch to knit). Think of it like a knit two together. This will really minimize the little “dip” you sometimes get in the first row.
I also like to use the tail together with my knitting yarn for this stitch plus the next 3 or 4 stitches in the first row, working them tightly because of the doubled bulk; this eliminates weaving in the end later. On your next row, knit the double stitches as one.
I just love how I learn something every time I come here. And I am working on a circular bag that I wanted to do stripes on. How wonderful! thanks.