Why does the pattern ask for me to use separate skein for each shoulder?

Hi! First time posting question. I’ve watched YouTube videos and I can follow the technique for casting off in the middle of a row for shaping neck, but the instructions ask me to bind off the middle stitches with a 2nd skein of yarn and to work both shoulders at the same time using separate skein of yarn for each shoulder. I just bought one skein and made it into a single ball! Do I need to unwind my ball? How do I know how much I will need? The pattern is Jelly Bean Stripe Outfit (sweater) from Bouncing Baby Knit Wardrobe 2003 ASN. The sweater will have buttons on one shoulder. I am using one colour only rather than making stripes of different colours. Thanks for any help!

Hi you are definitely going to need a sevond ball of yarn exactly how much I can’t tell you. I personally would divide the ball in half

Welcome to the forum!
If you don’t want to divide the yarn, you could work across the first shoulder, bind off the center sts and then work shoulder #2. You’ll have to follow just the directions for one shoulder and when you finish shoulder 2, cut the yarn and rejoin to work shoulder #1.

Maybe one of these patterns:

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Yes - this is the pattern book I am using. Thanks for your help. I think this is what I will try!

I have to thank you to salmonmac, that was a great idea for solving the problem! Brillant mind !

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Thanks very much for your advice. I was surprised when the instructions did not put a note at the beginning saying that a second skein would be needed. The original pattern is striped with different colours, so I guess for that colour arrangement, it would be easy enough to make another ball. I’m using two strands of two different yarns together - each skein wound into a single ball. I’m going to try the suggestion that I work one shoulder first, bind off and then do the second shoulder. If that doesn’t go well for the back, I’ll definitely take the time to split my yarn into two batches for the front. Boy, I sure hope this sweater looks nice when it’s done!!

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I have no doubt that it will look amazing when it’s finished


Thanks for the help, fellow knitters! I did cut the yarn then re-attach when I went back to do the other shoulder. I had just inches of one of the yarns left at the end of the 2nd sleeve! Did the neckband with the solid colour. Learned some new skills (like picking up stitches at neck edge), so I think I will try this pattern again.

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Beautifully done! The bonus is learning all the new skills too.
Which yarn did you use? It’s a lovely color and the solid color collar works perfectly with it.

Wow momkitimat the sweater looks beautiful, and the colors are amazing. It makes us feel wonderful when we see a completed project and it never hurts to learn something new along the way. GOOD JOB!!!

I used two yarns - one was “Knitted Wit Victory Sock” (knittedwit.com) a white with colour speckles called “Unicorn Farts”! The pink was a sock yarn from Cascade “Heritage” in a colour #5628. I struggled to find a pattern to make the shoulder opening type of sweater that my daughter-in-law asked for, since I only had 4 oz of the Knitted Wit yarn. I ended up using the 2 strands so that I could follow a pattern that called for “sport weight” yarn. Live & Learn! Next time, I will use caution when only buying one skein of yarn at a shop so far from home!

These things happen. You’ve worked it out beautifully.
Here’s a couple of shoulder fastening patterns in case you need them. Slightly different takes on the opening

Wow! Thank you Salmonmac! I had not found these patterns on Ravelry. I have saved them to my library on that site and look forward to trying them. I will make one to donate to one of our hospital auxiliary shops, if that suits your request.
Happy Knitting!