Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Fretted Band Cowl

Fretted Band Cowl

The explanation for this cowl is simple: I love these two yarns together, even if my husband originally thought the combination was strange. And while this piece turned out more like the Sweet Strawberry Cowl and the Sugar & Ice Cowl than I originally intended, it has enough differences to set it apart. Like the slip stitch pattern, for instance, which would also look good in more contrasting yarns.

Yarn: SMC Select Reflect (52% Viscose, 48% Cotton; 131 yards [120 meters]/50 grams); #4108 - one skein (color A), SMC Select Violena Colori (50% Cotton, 50% Modal; 109 yards [100 meters]/50 grams); color #4307 (color B)

The slip stitch pattern, closer up.
Needles: One 20" circular needle in size 6, two double pointed needles (dpns), also in size 6

Notions: Tapestry needle, two stitch markers

Gauge: 21 stitches = 4 inches

So let's get this thing started! To begin, use your color A yarn to cast on 144 stitches, place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit a couple of edging rows, as follows:

Edging row: using color A, * k2, p2, k2; rep from *

Knit the edging row three times, and then we'll transition to our slip stitch pattern, which is a variation on Fretted Band Pattern from page 67 of Barbara G. Walker's A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns. We'll be slipping all stitches with the yarn in the back. And we'll proceed like so:

Rows 1 & 2: using color B, knit

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Sweetheart Beanie

Sweetheart Beanie

When it comes to making hats, I like to live dangerously. And what I mean by that, naturally, is that I like to use as much of my skein as humanly possible, like in this instance, where I knit the adult size of this hat and had about one yard of yarn left at the end. Of course, I mention this to give you a warning; while I knit this hat out of approximately 135 yards of this particular yarn, you may need more. On the plus side, if you knit both sizes, two skeins will definitely be plenty for both!

The finishing.
Sizes: Child (roughly 20" in circumference) and Adult (roughly 22" in circumference) (instructions for the Adult hat will follow those for the Child hat in parentheses)

Yarn: Cascade Yarns 220 Superwash Sport (100% Superwash Merino Wool; 136 yards [125 meters]/50 grams); #901 Cotton Candy - one to two skeins

Needles: One 16" circular needle in size US 5, one 16" circular needle in size US 6, one set of double pointed needles (dpn), also in size US 6, and a cable needle (cn) or dpn for cabling

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 22 stitches = 4 inches

So let's get started! Using your size 5 needle, cast on 108 stitches loosely (120 stitches for the larger hat), place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit the following ribbing row:

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Twin Leaf Cowl

Twin Leaf Cowl

Oh, how I love this yarn. Straight-up cotton (which, despite its difficulties, I adore), and a white base with a neon green spray paint effect, this is the type of fiber that I obsess over and that my husband makes a bit of a squicky face when I purchase. But not even he can argue with the dainty loveliness of this light, one-skein cowl and its basic but delightful pattern. Yay spring!

The twin leaf motif.
Hey, I'm a poet and I don't... yeah, never mind.
Yarn: Schoeller + Stahl Spray (100% Cotton; 153 yards [140 meters]/50 grams); #6 - one skein

Needles: One 24" circular needle in size 4, six stitch markers

Notions: Tapestry needle

Gauge: 24 stitches = 4 inches

Cast on 160 stitches, place marker, and join in round. And before we get started on the main pattern, which incorporates two panels of Twin Leaf Lace from page 210 of Barbara G. Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns (which I've modified for the round), we'll knit the following set-up rows:

Set-up Row 1: * k1, p1; rep from *

Set-up Row 2: * p1, k1 *

Set-up Row 3: * k1, p1 *

Friday, May 9, 2014

Cellular Stitch Kids' Poncho

Cellular Stitch Kids' Poncho

As I'm sure I've mentioned, I have a hard time letting a house guest leave without a knit good or two. And since a friend stayed for weeks to help with our family's latest addition (who I'm sure I'll knit something for soon as well), I designed this poncho for her daughter in return. Since I was working with a variegated yarn, I tried to keep the pattern simple but appealing, and worked a basic openwork for the majority of the design with a couple of lace stripes for the shoulders. As I found out as soon as my friend's daughter put it on, however, it looks just as good with the stripes going up the front and the back of the poncho as it does with them on the shoulders!

The cellular stitch, closer up.
Sizes: Toddler (2 - 3 years); Child (4 - 7 years) (the instructions for the larger size will follow the instructions for the smaller size in parentheses)

Yarn: Plymouth Yarn Jelli Beenz (75% Acrylic, 25% Wool; 214 yards [196 meters]/100 grams); #2385 Flamingo - two skeins (if you have the 50 gram skeins instead, 3 will do you)

Needles: One 16" circular needle in size 8, one 24" circular needle in size 8

Notions: Tapestry needle, four stitch markers

Gauge: 18 stitches = 4 inches

So let's begin! Using your 16" circular needle, cast on 72 stitches loosely (80 for the larger size), place marker, and join in round. Knit 1" in a k1, p1 ribbing, and then we'll knit the following addition row:

Addition Row: * k2, m1, k1 * (larger size: * k3, m1, k2; rep from *) (96 stitches, both sizes)

And once that's done, we'll knit the following transition row, in order to place our extra stitch markers. It is the same for both sizes.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mirage Cowl

Mirage Cowl

When I first bought this yarn, I had no clue how I was going to use it (well, I knew I would use the two shades together - I love this color palette). And then I made the Slip-Stitch Mesh Fingerless Gloves and matching hat and the Water Lilies Cowl, and I saw a nice opportunity to combine variations on the slip stitch patterns I used for those pieces to maximum effect. Long story short, while the pictures don't quite do the front slip stitch pattern justice, color-wise (the pink shows up behind the teal a bit more in person than it does in the photos), the combination of the two is quite striking in this closer-fitting cowl.

Yarn: Regia Angora Merino (65% New Wool, 25% Polyamide, 10% Angora; 219 yards [200 meters]/50 grams); #7083 Teal - one skein (color A) & #7080 Fuchsia - one skein (color B)

My attempted close-up of the mirage-like color pattern.
Or something.
Needles: One 20" circular needle in size US 2

Notions: Tapestry needle, three stitch markers

Gauge: 30 stitches = 4 inches

Using your color A yarn, cast on 160 stitches, place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit four rows in a k2, p2 ribbing, followed by a knit row during which you'll place your extra stitch markers 20 stitches from either side of your row marker. And then, we'll move on to the main pattern, which is...

Row 1: using color B, * k1, slip 1 with yarn in back (wyib) * until you reach first marker, m1l, slip marker, k2, and * slip 1 wyib, k1 * until you reach second marker; then, slip marker, m1r, and * slip 1 wyib, k1 * until end of round

Friday, May 2, 2014

Slip-Stitch Mesh Hat

Slip-Stitch Mesh Hat

After I finished the Slip-Stitch Mesh Fingerless Gloves, I figured I had just enough yarn left in my skein for a hat. And it seemed like a good idea to make a hat that matched the gloves, since they're knit from the same stuff and all. So, if you're interested in knitting the smaller size of the gloves and the hat as written (I give a variation to make it slightly larger below, and I'm not sure you have enough yarn to accomplish it if you're making the gloves too), you can probably do it with just one ball. Otherwise, of course, they're both good stash projects that don't use too much yardage!

The back. Simple and clean.
Yarn: Berroco Vintage (52% Acrylic, 40% Wool, 8% Nylon; 218 yards [200 meters]/100 grams); #5120 Gingham - one skein

Needles: One 16" circular needle in size US 9, one 16" circular needle in size US 7, one set of double pointed needles, also in size US 9

Notions: Tapestry needle

Gauge: 18 stitches = 4 inches on size 8 needles

Using your size 7 needle, cast on 90 stitches, place marker, and join in round. Knit one inch in a p1, k1 ribbing and then switch to your size 9 needle. And then, we'll be moving on to the main pattern, which uses a variation on Slip-Stitch Mesh from page 156 of Barbara G. Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns, and goes as follows: