What the heck?

I bought one lonely skein of Lion Brand Microspun to see if I liked it. I made a stockinette swatch with it, and a weird thing is happening. On every stitch, the left side of the “V” is totally vertical while the right side of the “V” is…well, V-shaped like it ought to be. I don’t get it. It’s happening on both the knit rows and the purl rows, it doesn’t seem to matter.
I’ve been knitting for over 30 years and this has never happened before. Has anybody else tried this yarn and gotten similar results? What causes it?

:?? :??
Got me …
I’ve never worked with it.

This was a question that I was going to ask!!! I’ve seen this in knitting before. I also have microspun. I will find some pics. BRB!!!

Ok, here is a practice swatch in stockinette. I’ve seen this on other knitted projects. You can see it on page 51 in Stitch 'N Bitch as an example.

That is exactly what I was posting for help with a few days ago. I just couldn’t get a picture posted to show it. My first project (in 2003) was microspun and it did EXACTLY what Beldie’s pic shows! :doh: I’m not alone! Unfortunately, I’m seeing this twist in other things I’ve done. It isn’t as noticeable with heavier yarn, but my merino sock yarn has a vicious little twist in it, too. My LYS says that my knitting technique is great, she thought maybe it’s a question of tension. Yvonne, can you do a test to see if you do this with other yarn? I would really like to know what the heck is happening with my yarn. It occurs in both English and Continental. I think I’m going to call the Schoolhouse Press people and ask for help. (Elizabeth Zimmermann’s posse) It will take me a couple days to get to this, but I’ll let you know what I find out. UNbelievable! This forum is GREAT! :cheering:

You could try adjusting the bias…

er… take hold of it on opposite corners (diagonal - i.e. top left, bottom right) and shift it (move hands in opposite direction, and then back the other way. Like adjutsing bias in a woven fabric.

No, in all my years of knitting I haven’t had any yarn behave this way.
It’s downright weird.
It looks exactly like Beldie’s photo. What does the S’n’B book say is the problem, anyway?
I frogged it, rolled the skein into a ball and started with the other end of the yarn, thinking it was the twist of the yarn, but got the same results.
Pulling it bias-wise does help, but only temporarily.

I’ve used microspun and haven’t gotten those results myself! I have, however, only knitted holding two strands at a time and on larger needles.
Sorry that I can’t really help too much. But I hope someone can help you troubleshoot!

Look at the stockinette stitches in the closeup below… I think I see a similar pattern in this hat I just completed.

Actually, I’m holding it in my hands right now, staring at it. I definitely see a similar pattern. The top-left-to-bottom-right stitch sides are forming vertical lines. It’s most pronounced at the bottom, in the knit part of the ribbing, but the lines continue all the way up.

I keep checking back on this thread to see if there are any updates, because I’ve noticed this problem in a few of my completed projects. I’m still a newbie, so I suspect the problem might be with my technique instead of a yarn.

Here’s a closeup shot of some stitches in a different yarn from my blue hat above. There’s clearly a problem here-- those aren’t V’s!

What am I doing wrong? Any ideas?

Hi, it’s me again. Here’s a discussion of this problem on another website. They cite four possible causes:

  1. Single ply yarns, most notably Lamb’s Pride, “stack” like this because of the way they’re spun. This is also described on this page (there’s a lot of text on this page-- search for the word “example” to find the right block of text). In fact, Yvonne, this page says this is a problem specifically with Lion Brand Microspun.

  2. Uneven tension. If you knit with different tensions on knit and purl stitches, this can result. Of course, this can’t be the problem if you’re knitting stockinette in the round.

  3. Twisted stitches. If you’re a newbie, you might be knitting into the back of your stitches, causing them to twist and stack. The poster actually cited KnittingHelp.com’s videos as the way she fixed her stitches. Go Amy.

  4. Different size needles. If you accidentally use mismatched needles, this can happen.

Heh, this is funny. I’ve noticed this in pictures before, and began examining my work for such things and sure enough, it pops up. It’s more pronounced with some yarns/needles than others.

I’ve never considered it a problem… I think it’s neato, like some new texture dimension in my work.

Go no explanation here, but again, I never questioned it once I found it cause I thought it was cool, yo.

Flappy, you found lots of info! Thanks for that.
It certainly does seem to be the Microspun itself that is the cause.
Yellowness, I like your attitude. It doesn’t have to be a “problem”, right? It’s just the way it is! :lol:

OK, let’s all SING! To the tune of “Ice Ice Baby” by Vanilla Ice, please…
If you got a problem
YO, she’ll solve it!
Check out her purl
And she wont have to Frog it!
Nice, Nice, Flappy!
She’s really Nice, Nice, Flappy!


Please note that this little musical interlude was inspired by Yellow’s use of the word “YO”, above. Copyright pending.


That is the best usage of my gleefully mangled attempts at pop culture indulgence I’ve ever seen.

Heavens to Betsy. :verysad:

Heavens to Betsy. :verysad:

You might want to read this recent thread.

Don’t worry, that same thing happend to me. It’s not you, it’s the yarn. Single ply yarns tend to do that. Personally, I think it looks pretty :thumbsup:

Spinners know what causes this…

It’s caused by over-spun or “energized” yarn. When yarn is plied, each single ply is spun either clockwise or counter-clockwise creating either a “Z twist” or an “S twist”. When the two singles are plied together, they are spun together in the opposite direction as the singles.

During plying, the twist of the singles evens itself out to create an evenly twisted yarn. If the yarn isn’t evenly twisted, it will be either overspun or underspun.

Overspun yarn kinda curls up on itself if you pull a length out from the skein, and will create this off center V when knitting. Single ply yarn is always an overspun yarn because there isn’t another ply to even it out with, thats why singles tend to cause this twisted V effect.

It’s not really a flaw or anything… it’s just something that happens. :slight_smile: