I wanted my leaf stems to look like they started somewhere on purpose. Just beginning a rib of knits on top of a field of purls is a little vague (and it sinks back into the fabric before poofing out.) So, I tried a bauble that grew into a rib.
Usually you start a bauble from one stitch, increases wildly, work back and forth in short rows , decrease back down to one stitch, and you finish the row as if nothing strange had happened. The Bauble poofs up and sits there like a cherry. What if I did only some of the short rows, decreased only a little, and used those increased stitches as the beginning of a rib? It could look like a paw, or the top of a septer, or the lobed edge of a leaf…
Here is what I came up with for a k2 cable strand:
Increase 3 stitches in one using a Christmas Tree Increase.
Slip 4 back onto right needle.
Turn, K2tog, SSK, continue on your row.
This ultimately adds two stitches to your stitch count, when you finish your cable motif, you may need to decrease stitches back down into the background. Swatch and see what happens!
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