Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Star Cluster Mini Shawl

Star Cluster Mini Shawl

I was only a few rows into the Twin Leaf Cowl when I realized that I absolutely wanted to work with the yarn again, especially since it was on clearance at my local store and I didn't know how much longer it would be available. So I bought another color of the stuff, this (in my opinion) gorgeous red. Then, I held on to it for a few months until inspiration struck in the form of this scarf-like thing, the Star Cluster Mini Shawl. Long story short, I've had this item on my mind for a while, and I couldn't be happier about how it turned out! As a warning, however, this item does use a few intermediate techniques, such as a provisional cast on and some short rows.

Yarn: Schoeller + Stahl Spray (100% Cotton; 153 yards [140 meters]/50 grams); #8 - two skeins

The pattern
Needles: Straight needles in size US 8, straight needles in size US 10 - 11

Notions: Tapestry needle
Gauge: 24 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette on size US 4 needles

To make this piece, we're going to begin in the middle, work one half, and then pick up stitches from the middle to work the other half again (by using a provisional cast on, not by actually picking up stitches). So, using your largest gauge needles and the provisional cast-on technique, cast on 71 stitches. Then switch to your size 8 needles and purl one row cross. Once that's done, we'll begin our pattern, which features the Star Cluster from page 217 of Barbara G. Walker's A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns and a decrease worked every odd row. First comes the terminology, and then the pattern.

Cluster 2 (c2): slip 2 stitches with yarn in back, bring yarn to front between needles, slip the same 2 stitches back to your left hand needle, pass yarn to back between needles, and then slip the same to stitches with yarn in back again

Row 1: k1, p1, k2, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2 together through back loops (k2tog-tbl); rep from * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then k3, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p5, * p1 (through first yo), p1-back (through second yo), c2 * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then p1, p1-back, p3, k1, p1

Row 3: k1, p1, k4, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2tog-tbl * until you have 8 stitches left on your needle, then k4, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 4: p1, k1, p4, * c2, p1, p1-back * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then c2, p3, k1, p1

Row 5: k1, p1, k2, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2 together through back loops (k2tog-tbl); rep from * until you have 5 stitches left on your needle, then k1, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 6: p1, k1, p3, * p1 (through first yo), p1-back (through second yo), c2 * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then p1, p1-back, p3, k1, p1

Row 7: k1, p1, k4, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2tog-tbl * until you have 6 stitches left on your needle, then k2, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 8: p1, k1, p2, * c2, p1, p1-back * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then c2, p3, k1, p1


Knit rows 1 - 8 until you have 11 stitches left on your needle, and you've just completed row 8 of the pattern. Notice that you will not have a full repeat of the stitch pattern left on most of your last set of 8 rows, and will be going straight from the stitches before the first * to the stitches after the second *. Anyway, once you have 11 stitches left, knit the following rows:

Row 1: k1, p1, k7, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p7, k1, p1

Knit rows 1 - 2 until this portion of the pattern measures 3" and you've just knit row 2. Then knit the following rows to finish this half of the piece:

Row 1: k1, p1, ssk, k3, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p5, k1, p1

Row 3: k1, p1, ssk, k1, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 4: p1, k1, p3, k1, p1

Row 5: k1, p1, slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso, p1, k1

Row 6: p1, k1, p1, k1, p1

Row 7: k1, slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso, k1

Row 8: p3

Row 9: slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso

Clip tail and pull through final stitch. Next, it's time to use your size 8 needles to pick up the provisional stitches. Then we'll work the middle of the piece as follows. Notice the short rows - if you need to brush up on your technique, here's a page you can check out.

Middle Row 1 (right side): knit

Middle Row 2 and all even rows (most of them are short rows): purl

Middle Row 3: k5, w&t

Middle Row 5: k10, w&t

Middle Row 7: k15, w&t

Middle Row 9: k20, w&t

Middle Row 11: k25, w&t

Middle Row 13: k30, w&t

Middle Row 15: k35, w&t

Middle Row 17: k40, w&t

Middle Row 19: knit

Middle Row 21: repeat row 17

Middle Row 23: repeat row 15

Middle Row 25: repeat row 13

Middle Row 27: repeat row 11

Middle Row 29: repeat row 9

Middle Row 31: repeat row 7

Middle Row 33: repeat row 5

Middle Row 35: repeat row 3

Middle Rows 37 & 39: knit

Middle Rows 38 & 40: purl

Work these 40 middle rows and then it's time to continue the pattern on the other half of the piece. So let's continue like so:

Row 1: k1, p1, ssk, k3, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2 together through back loops (k2tog-tbl); rep from * until you have 4 stitches left on your needle, then k2, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p3, * p1 (through first yo), p1-back (through second yo), c2 * until you have 9 stitches left on your needle, then p1, p1-back, p5, k1, p1

Row 3: k1, p1, ssk, k4, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2tog-tbl * until you have 6 stitches left on your needle, then k4, p1, k1

Row 4: p1, k1, p3, * c2, p1, p1-back * until you have 8 stitches left on your needle, then c2, p4, k1, p1

Row 5: k1, p1, ssk, k1, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2 together through back loops (k2tog-tbl); rep from * until you have 4 stitches left on your needle, then k2, p1, k1

Row 6: p1, k1, p3, * p1 (through first yo), p1-back (through second yo), c2 * until you have 7 stitches left on your needle, then p1, p1-back, p3, k1, p1

Row 7: k1, p1, ssk, k2, * k2tog, (yo) twice, k2tog-tbl * until you have 6 stitches left on your needle, then k4, p1, k1

Row 8: p1, k1, p3, * c2, p1, p1-back * until you have 6 stitches left on your needle, then c2, p2, k1, p1


Knit rows 1 - 8 until you have 11 stitches left on your needle, and you've just completed row 8 of the pattern. Notice that you will not have a full repeat of the stitch pattern left on most of your last set of 8 rows, and will be going straight from the stitches before the first * to the stitches after the second *. Once you have 11 stitches left, knit the following rows:

Row 1: k1, p1, k7, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p7, k1, p1

Knit rows 1 - 2 until this portion of the pattern measures 3" and you've just knit row 2. Then knit the following rows to finish:

Row 1: k1, p1, ssk, k3, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 2: p1, k1, p5, k1, p1

Row 3: k1, p1, ssk, k1, k2tog, p1, k1

Row 4: p1, k1, p3, k1, p1

Row 5: k1, p1, slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso, p1, k1

Row 6: p1, k1, p1, k1, p1

Row 7: k1, slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso, k1

Row 8: p3

Row 9: slip 2 together knitwise-k1-p2sso

Clip tail and pull through final stitch. Tuck in ends and block. Knot skinny ends of mini shawl, if desired.




8 comments:

  1. Are the needles sizes metric?

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    Replies
    1. Nope, US! I've been trying to include this information on all of my newer patterns, and I just updated this one. :) Please let me know if you have any other questions.

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  2. Replies
    1. Hello there! W&t is wrap and turn, which is a technique used in short row knitting :) Here's a good resource for instruction: http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEsummer03/FEATbonnetric.htm

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    2. Thank you, I just started sort rows and w&t was new term for me. I LOVE this scarf. My aunt taught knitting in Kaufman, downtown Louisville, Kentucky, and to all 5 of us sisters back in 50's. Just don't always know terminology.

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    3. I'm glad to hear you like it! And it sounds like you had some great knitting instruction - I mostly taught myself, and will freely admit that I did short row knitting completely wrong for years!!! Turns out it's important how you handle that w&t when you come back to it as well.... :)

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  3. Love this pattern and I am anxious to start it. I'm familiar with almost all of the techniques you've written into this pattern except p1-back... what is that?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Kate!

      That's just purling one through the back loop of the stitch instead of the front loop - here's a link to an illustration if you need it (although it will look slightly different in this pattern, since you're purling through the back loop of a second yarn over) - http://www.lionbrand.com/faq/93.html

      Let me know if you have any more questions! :)

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