Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Sailor's Rib Cowl

Sailor's Rib Cowl

I bought this yarn nearly a year ago, I believe, with the intention of making a nice scarf for my husband with it. But since he was never very enthusiastic about said scarf, it never got made. And then he renewed his determination to bike commute this winter and it dawned on both of us: he didn't need a scarf, he needed a cowl. A nice, snug, long cowl that he can pull up over his face when the temperatures dip into the teens and the winds are blowing. And, to be quite honest, I'm kind of amazed that the idea never occurred to me before. After all, while I doubt he'll start wearing this cowl as a new man fashion statement (not because it isn't pretty, but because I haven't seen many men in cowls), it tucks into a jacket with much less bulk than a scarf, and looks just as nice.

Yarn: Cascade Yarns Cascade 220 (100% Peruvian Highland Wool; 220 yards [200 meters]/100 grams); #9458 Bainbridge Island Heather - 1 skein

A closer look at the pattern
Needles: 16" circular needle in size US 7

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 20 stitches = 4 inches

So let's make this bad boy! First, cast on 100 stitches, place marker, and join in round. And then we'll move straight to the main pattern, which is Fisherman's Rib from page 4 of Barbara G. Walker's A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns, except adapted for the round. Anyway, it goes as follows:

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Rib & Welt Baby Blanket

Rib & Welt Baby Blanket

It's embarrassing to admit, but I'll do it anyway; I started knitting this blanket very shortly after my six month old baby was born, and I only just finished it yesterday. Of course, that doesn't mean that I don't dig the pattern or anything - I do!!! It's reversible and everything!!! It is not, however, as quick of a knit as I'm used to, since it's basically a 26" wide x 29" high rectangle made out of sport weight yarn. That being said, if you're going to make a baby blanket, the Rib & Welt Baby Blanket is a pretty good option. It's strikingly graphic, and did I mention the whole reversible thing? Plus, the pattern is very easy to learn, and babies look super cute on it.

Yarn: Patons Beehive Baby Sport (70% Acrylic, 30% Nylon; 304 yards [278 meters]/85 grams); #11142 Little Boy - three skeins

The pattern
Needles: 24" or longer circular needle in size US 5

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 24 stitches = 4 inches

So let's get started! First, then, cast on 174 stitches loosely. Then knit 1" in a * k1, p1 * ribbing. On your last row like this, place one stitch marker 10 stitches from the beginning of the row, another 82 stitches from the beginning, another 92 stitches from the beginning, and the final marker 10 stitches from the end of the row. And then let's proceed as follows in the main pattern, which incorporates two panels of Rib and Welt Diagonals from page 9 of Barbara G. Walker's A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns. Like so, then:

Row 1: * k1, p1 * until you reach first marker, slip marker, then; * k1, p1, k1, p5; rep from * until you reach second marker. Slip marker, * k1, p1 * until third marker, slip marker, and then; * k1, p1, k1, p5 * until you reach final marker; slip marker, * k1, p1 * to end

Row 2 and all even rows: knit the knit stitches and purl the purl stitches, slipping all markers when you come to them

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

All in the Family Earflap Hat

All in the Family Earflap Hat
Child Size

Although I've made hats of many other silhouettes, a reader recently reminded me that I had yet to post an earflap. And this reminder instantly reminded me of yet another thing - namely, that the last time I made an earflap hat, I had far fewer knitting techniques in my toolbox, and ended up having to cobble together a hat, some flaps, and some weird cast-ons with a crocheted edging, to hide the mess. Now that I've progressed, however, I designed this All in the Family Earflap Hat with a basic but rather elegant design that uses a provisional cast on for a seamless, nicely finished look. Plus, it doesn't require any crocheted hoo-ha for the edging (although of course you're welcome to crochet as much hoo-ha as you like; no judgment here). Also, as a note, I should mention that, though I very much enjoyed this yarn, I found the gauge recommendations to be WAY off. Thusly (and especially with a basic stockinette hat such as this), I highly recommend that you check your gauge before accidentally knitting a hat that would fit the Jolly Green Giant better than your kid.

Sizes: Toddler (Child; Small Adult; Large Adult) (in measurements, and roughly, the toddler size should fit an 18" - 19" inch head, the child a 19.5" - 21" inch head, the small adult up to a 21" head, and the large adult up to a 23" head)

Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca (50% Alpaca, 50% Wool; 215 yards [198 meters]/100 grams); #6288 Blueberry Mix - 1 skein

From the side.
Needles: 16" circular needle in size US 8, one set of double pointed needles (dpns), also in size US 8, and one 10 or 10 1/2 needle for the provisional cast on

Notions: Tapestry needle

Gauge: 16 stitches = 4 inches

So let's get started! Using your largest needle and a provisional cast on, cast on 70 (77; 77; 84) stitches. Then, transfer stitches to your size 8 circular needle, place marker, and join in round. Knit until piece measures about 5.5" (6"; 7.5"; 8"), and then we'll begin the decreases, as follows. Remember to switch to your dpns once you're down to about 60 stitches.

Decrease Row 1: * k5, k2tog; rep from *

Decrease Row 2: knit

Decrease Row 3: * k4, k2tog *

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Kids' Banana Beanie

Kids' Banana Beanie

The baby is 6 months old now, so I figured it was high time he made his debut. And what better way to do it than sporting a chunky weight baby hat that can be sized all the way up to 12 years (he's wearing the 9 month size, though - I just couldn't bring myself to knit something he would outgrow immediately)? Anyway, there's not really much else to say about this piece, except for the fact that it's a quick and easy knit, and that its subtle pattern is oh-so-cute.

Sizes: 6 months (9 months; 12 months; up to 3 years; up to 12 years) (to be clearer on sizes: the 6 month will fit up to a 16" head, the 9 month a 17" head, the 12 month an 18" head, the 3 year a 19" head, and the 12 year up to a 21" head)

Yarn: Berroco Vintage Chunky (50% Acrylic, 40% Wool, 10% Nylon; 130 yards [120 meters]/100 grams); #6122 Banana - 1 skein, plus roughly 10 yards of contrasting color, if desired for pompom

A better shot of the pattern,
And the pom pom.
Needles: 16" circular needle in size US 10, one set of double pointed needles (dpns), also in size US 10

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 14 stitches = 4 inches on size 10 needles

So let's get started! First, as a side note, I knit this entire hat with my size 10 needles. However, you could cast on and knit the first five-ish rows with a size 9, if you desired, for a bit of extra snugness at the bottom of the hat. And now that the note is out of the way - using the 16" circular needle of your desired gauge, cast on 52 (56; 60; 64; 68) stitches, place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit one set-up row, like so:

Set-up Row: * k3, p1; rep from *

And once that's done, let's move straight to our main pattern, which goes as follows:

Row 1: * k1, p1 *

Rows 2 & 4: * k1, slip 1 with yarn in back, k1, p1 *

Row 3: * k3, p1 *