So, I have finally started the T-shirt project that I talked about in this knitting post. It has taken a couple of starts to get it going because it is oh, so easy to drop stitches. Sometimes you can pick up those stitches and sometimes you can't. Anyway, once I got started and made it through the first section, I realized that I didn't know if I should have added edge stitches. Eeek! Off to the net to see if I can find anything about edge stitches and when to use them. I could find information on the various types of edge stitches but I couldn't find anything that told when to add an edge stitch or if edge stitches should always be added.
Off to my trusty little library. It may be small but I do own some fairly good books. I found "The Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques" by Nancie N Wiseman. This is not a book I have reached for often. I am sure I read through it when I got it and then put it on my shelf for future reference. Low and behold there is a whole chapter on edge stitches or selvages. After reading her explanation of edge stitches and when to use them, I have decided that for this project I'm not going to need them. After all, my project is a straight stockinette stitch and it wants the edges to roll. Well, at least on the hem edges.
So what are edge stitches or selvages used for? They control the edge of the knitted fabric and also give you additional stitches to create a seam if you're project needs it. If you were knitting a scarf, an edge stitch would assist with getting the edges to lay flat. If you were knitting a sweater with beautiful motifs or designs on it, the edge stitches would be added to prevent a disruption of the pattern by adding additional stitches for the seam. Sounds easy enough, doesn't it?
So, if anyone has any additional information on the use of edge stitches. Please send me the information so I can learn more. At this point, my project is only about 3" long. I would rather do another start than find out at the end that I should have added the edges stitches.