Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Feathered Arrow Headband

Feathered Arrow Headband

One of knitting's greatest challenges (in my opinion, at least) is finding a good way to use your yarn scraps. I never have the heart to throw them away, after all, and then I never have quite enough yarn to do anything really spectacular with my leftovers. Luckily, the humble headband can be a great solution to this problem - quick, fun, and gratifying to knit, they're also highly wearable and a great gift. Case in point: the Feathered Arrow Headband, which uses less than 50 yards of yarn and is easy to customize for teens to adults.

Yarn: Patons Classic Wool (100% Pure New Wool; 210 yards [192 meters]/100 grams); #202 (Cream) - one skein
The pattern.
Subtle, but niiiiice.

Needles: straight needles in size US 8, straight needles in size US 10 (for provisional cast-on)

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 18 stitches = 4 inches

So let's make a headband! First, then, using your size 10 needles and a provisional cast on, cast on 17 stitches loosely. Then, we'll move straight to our size US 8 needles and our main pattern, which is Expanded Feather Pattern from page 194 of Barbara G. Walker's A Treasury of Knitting Patterns, and goes as follows:

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Sea & Shore Cowl

Sea & Shore Cowl

When I first started knitting this piece, it seemed very timely; the tulips were starting to bloom, and the weather was finally heating up. I even took the flannel sheets off my bed. Of course, every action has an equal and opposite reaction, so now it's freaking snowing. Before I start complaining about the cold spring, however, I should mention some important stuff - mainly, that this cowl is worked in two colors of sock weight yarn on size US 5 needles to give it extra airiness. Because the warm weather will arrive eventually, right?

Yarn: Schachenmayr Original Egypto Cotton (100% Cotton; 197 yards [180 meters]/50 grams); #00174 Leaf Green - one skein (color A) and #00166 Mint - one skein (color B)

A close up of the piece
Needles: One 24" circular needle in size US 5

Notions: Tapestry needle, three stitch markers

Gauge: 30 stitches = 4 inches on size 2 needles 

So let's do this thing! First, then, using your color A yarn, cast on 183 stitches loosely, place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit a couple of set-up rows, as follows:

Set-up Row 1: using color A, p16, place marker, p152 (or until there are 15 stitches left in round), place marker, and purl until end of round

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spring Shadows Hat

Spring Shadows Hat

Well, what can I say about this hat? First and foremost, I guess, Malabrigo still makes a damn fine yarn. And with that out of the way, I should also mention that this hat has more openwork than it might initially appear - basically, all of the stuff between the braids is mesh. So it's a great change-of-seasons number, if I do say so myself.

Yarn: Malabrigo Mecha (100% Merino Superwash Wool ; 130 yards [120 meters]/100 grams); #875 Arapey - one skein

A braid, and some nice mesh.
In short, a lovely spring hat!
Needles: One 16" circular needle in size US 9, one 16" circular needle in size US 10.5, one set of double pointed needles (dpns), also in size US 10.5, and a cable needle (cn), or dpn for cabling

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 12 stitches = 4 inches on size 10.5 needles

So let's make a hat! First, then, using your size 9 needle, cast on 65 stitches loosely, place marker, and join in round. Then we'll knit some edging rows, as follows:

Edging Row: * (p1, k1) four times, p1, k2, p1, k1; rep from *

Knit this edging row until piece measures just over 1". Then we'll knit the following transition row:

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Nom Nom Garter Hat

Nom Nom Garter Hat

You may be wondering why this thing is called the Nom Nom Garter Hat. The answer to that question is simple - it's because it will eat up your yarn scraps like "nom nom nom!" Before we get started, however, I should tell you a couple of things - first of all, you need roughly 50 yards each of your two main colors in order to get this hat going. Provided you have that, you can do your accent colors with quite small amounts of any worsted- or dk-weight yarns (or smaller, if you hold two strands together!). Also, I wrote my color combination out here so that you could make the hat with the exact same color scheme, if you wanted. Please, however, feel free to ignore my accent coloring (colors C - J), and do your own instead! If you choose to do this, however, you'll definitely want to pay attention to the length of the stockinette stripe on this hat - it is a better indication of the finished length than the garter stitch. To make the color pop, after all, you'll be blocking the snot out of this thing, and the garter will stretch a LOT.

Oh, and last but not least - I designed this hat back-and-forth, both for my peeps who avoid circular knitting, and because that's the only way to truly take advantage of the garter stitch. If you need help converting the pattern for circular knitting, just ask!

Sizes: Adult Small (Adult Large)

Yarn: Cascade Yarns 220 Superwash (100% Superwash Wool; 220 yards [200 meters]/100 grams); #1948 Mystic Purple - one skein (color A), #908 Magenta - one skein (color B) & various scrap yarns in worsted & dk weights (colors C - J) - roughly 50 yards total

This is how I kept my colors straight!
My children thought I was working on a cool
art project, at least.
Needles: straight needles in size US 7

Notions: Tapestry needle, stitch marker

Gauge: 20 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette, 16 stitches = 4 inches in garter

So let's get started! First, then, using your color A yarn, cast on 82 (90) stitches. Then we'll work the edging rows like so:

Row 1: using color A, p3, knit until you have 3 stitches left in row, p3

Row 2: using color C, knit

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Bricklayer's Lace Baby Blanket

Bricklayer's Lace Baby Blanket

The story behind this project is simple: I've reached the age where my friends are starting to have babies, so I've started to knit baby blankets. Therefore, as soon as I knew a friend was pregnant, I began looking for the right fiber at my local yarn store. And I passed this one by for months and months before I finally saw it knit up, and loved the way the stitches looked like rain drops. So I brought it home and found this lovely stitch pattern, which shows off both the yarn and the pattern. And it's a quick knit, since it's chunky and all!

Yarn: James C. Brett Flutterby (100% Supersoft Polyester; 192 yards [175 meters]/100 grams); #B3 Blue - 3 skeins

The pattern. For all the bricklaying
babies out there.

Needles: 32" or longer circular needle in size US 10

Notions: Tapestry needle

Gauge: 11 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette

Okay dudes, are you ready to make a baby blanket? Then let's get started! First, cast on 96 stitches loosely. And then we'll knit the following set-up rows:

Set-up Row 1 (wrong side): knit

Set-up Row 2: knit

Set-up Row 3: knit

Set-up Row 4: knit