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Star of Bethlehem – free Christmassy pattern! December 20, 2009

I designed this simple geometric star for the BaaRamEwe Christmas window display, a Jean Greenhowe knitted nativity set made by the BaaRamEwe knit night crew.

Star of Bethlehem decoration

In keeping with the shop theme (Yorkshire yarns and British breeds), I’ve used pure Blue-faced Leicester DK for the star and Twilleys Goldfingering for the optional embellishment. You could substitute for almost any yarn, just remember that as with any stuffed item you’ll need a needle size a little smaller than usual so the fabric is nice and dense. I used a circular needle, or dpns would work, especially for the fiddly bits at the centre front and back of the star.

The star looks great as a hanging ornament, or with a little adaptation it could be made into a tree-topper.

Star of Bethlehem:

Materials:

British Breeds Yarns Blue Faced Leicester Double Knitting, shade 629 (yellow), 1 ball.

Twilleys of Stamford Goldfingering, shade 64 (orange), 1 ball.

3.25mm circular needle, 60cm or longer.

Stitch markers (optional).

Needle.

Toy stuffing.

Abbreviations:

k = knit

p = purl

kfb = knit into front and back of the same stitch

sl = slip next stitch with yarn at the back of the work – all slipped stitches are worked purlwise unless otherwise stated

k2tog = knit 2 stitches together

triple dec = slip 2 stitches together as if to k2tog, knit next stitch through the back of the loop, then pass the slipped stitches over (2 stitches decreased)

Instructions:

Small Point  (make 3)

Cast on 4 stitches and slip them to the other end of the needle. Start knitting the next row from the first cast on stitch as if making an i-cord.

Round 1: place marker if required to mark start of round.  kfb, repeat to end of round (8 stitches).

Round 2: [sl, k] to end of round.

Round 3: k all.

Round 4: [sl, k] to end of round.

Round 5: [k, kfb] to end of round (12 stitches).

Round 6: [sl, k2] to end of round.

Round 7: k all.

Round 8: [sl, k2] to end of round.

Round 9: [k2, kfb] to end of round (16 stitches).

Round 10: [sl, k3] to end of round.

Round 11: k all.

Round 12: [sl, k3] to end of round.

Round 13: [k3, kfb] to end of round (20 stitches).

Round 14: [sl, k4] to end of round.

Round 15: k all.

Round 16: [sl, k4] to end of round.

Round 17: [k4, kfb] to end of round (24 stitches).

Round 18: [sl, k5] to end of round.

Round 19: k all.

Round 20: [sl, k5] to end of round.

Round 21: [k5, kfb] to end of round (28 stitches).

Round 22: [sl, k6] to end of round.

Round 23: k all.

Round 24: [sl, k6] to end of round.

Round 25: [k6, kfb] to end of round (32 stitches).

Round 26: [sl, k7] to end of round.

Round 27: k all.

Round 28: [sl, k7] to end of round.

Break yarn and thread stitches onto waste yarn.

Large Point (make 1)

Rounds 1-8: Same as on Small Points (12 stitches).

Round 9: k all.

Round 10: [sl, k2] to end of round.

Rounds 11-12: repeat Rounds 9-10.

Round 13: [k2, kfb] to end of round (16 stitches).

Round 14: [sl, k3] to end of round.

Round 15: k all.

Rounds 16-19: repeat Rounds 14-15 twice.

Round 20: [sl, k3] to end of round.

Round 21: [k3, kfb] to end of round (20 stitches).

Round 22: [sl, k4] to end of round.

Round 23: k all.

Rounds 24-27: repeat Rounds 22-23 twice.

Round 28: [sl, k4] to end of round.

Round 29: [k4, kfb] to end of round (24 stitches).

Round 30: [sl, k5] to end of round.

Round 31: k all.

Rounds 32-25: repeat Rounds 30-31 twice.

Round 36: [sl, k5] to end of round.

Round 37: [k5, kfb] to end of round (28 stitches).

Round 38: [sl, k6] to end of round.

Round 39: k all.

Rounds 40-43: repeat Rounds 38-39 twice.

Round 44: [sl, k6] to end of round.

Round 45: [k6, kfb] to end of round (32 stitches).

Round 46: [sl, k7] to end of round.

Round 47: k all.

Rounds 48-51: repeat Rounds 46-47 twice.

Round 52: [sl, k7] to end of round.

Thread the last 15 stitches worked onto waste yarn without breaking the working yarn.

Centre 1 (can be either back or front):

Assemble points of star as follows:

Working across the Large Point, sl first stitch, ** k15, sl next stitch knitwise.

Take one of the Small Points, and slide 17 stitches onto your left needle point, starting and ending with one of the slipped (corner) stitches of the points. Sl first stitch knitwise, then insert left needle point into the front of the first 2 stitches on the right needle and knit them together. **

Repeat from ** to ** 3 more times. The final time you will be joining the 3rd Small Point back to the Large Point (64 stitches in round). K7 to the new start of the round – place marker if necessary to mark new start of round.

Round 1: [sl, k6, triple dec, k6] to end of round (56 stitches).

Round 2: k all.

Round 3: [sl, k5, triple dec, k5] to end of round (48 stitches).

Round 4: k all.

Round 5: [sl, k4, triple dec, k4] to end of round (40 stitches).

Round 6: k all.

Round 7: [sl, k3, triple dec, k3] to end of round (32 stitches).

Round 8: [k3, triple dec, k2] to end of round (24 stitches).

Round 9: [sl, k1, triple dec, k1] to end of round (16 stitches).

Round 10: [k1, triple dec] to end of round (8 stitches).

Break yarn and thread through the final 8 stitches. Secure yarn on wrong side of work and darn in yarn ends from points. Part stuff each point.

Centre 2:

Cut waste yarn lengths and work remaining stitches from points as follows, starting with the centre (slipped) stitch on any point:

[k8, pick up 2 stitches between points and knit together, k7] to end of round (64 stitches).

Repeat from Round 1 of Centre 1, adding small amounts of stuffing as you go and ensuring the star is fully stuffed before the centre hole gets too small.

Secure any remaining yarn ends and hide on the inside.

Optional embellishment:

Using sparkly thread and duplicate stitch (Swiss darning), oversew the outline of the star, the centre stitches of each point on both sides, and the diagonals on both sides (basically every place you were slipping stitches or decreasing while knitting).

Make a loop of plaited, twisted or crocheted thread at the top point of the star (opposite the Large Point!). Display, and enjoy.

{Puzzle – starting from a point of the star, with an extremely long thread it would be possible to do all the oversewing in 1 continuous line. Can you work out how?}

 

BaaRamEwe just got better… November 26, 2009

Filed under: General yarniness — purplesteph @ 2:01 pm
Tags: , , ,

The best little yarn shop in Leeds just got better:

Ace designer Ysolda Teague opened the new workshop room at BaaRamEwe in Headingley last Thursday, and signed copies of the marvellous Whimsical Little Knits 2.  (Pandop, is it Christmas yet? What about now? Or now?)

See here for further photos, including a couple of the many Ishbels worn or brought along to the event (I counted at least 7), and evidence suggesting that it isn’t possible to take an unflattering photo of Ysolda, but it is definitely possible to take a very bad picture of me, particularly when I’m pulling a funny face, sipping wine and trying on a marigold yellow hat (the one seen in the background of the picture above). Oh well.

While my blog has been shockingly neglected of late, there may be some new entries coming up soon – I have no less than 4 designs in progress, of which 2 are almost ready to publish. And 1 of them isn’t even for socks! Also, in a case of necessity being the mother of invention, I’ve worked out a way to do a provisional (crochet) cast on with no crochet hook, just hands and a knitting needle. So that will be blogged as soon as I find a way to take a photo of my own hands.

 

Sadie: a sweet and simple cabled sock. Free pattern! May 3, 2009

You know you’re an addicted knitter when…

…someone hands you a cute baby to hold and you just stare at the stitch pattern on her cute hand-knit hoodie.

The baby’s name is Sadie, the hoodie has now been outgrown, but the stitch pattern lives on, memorised, reconstructed, reinterpreted, and finally turned into socks.

These socks are constructed toe up, with a reversed heel-flap-and-gusset heel. A little simple calculation is required to work this heel, but it’s not scary, honest! Garter stitch inserts fill the centre of the cable twists, which are themselves framed by purl rounds. At the cuff, the cables merge smoothly into the unusual 7 stitch ribbing.

The pattern is written for 2 circular needles, but dpns or Magic Loop can easily be substituted if preferred. I have included a chart, as well as full written instructions for the stitch pattern.

Sadie Socks

Yarn: 90% fine alpaca, 10% cotton sock yarn (4 ply) from DT Craft and Design 100g (approx 350m).

(Or substitute any solid or semi-solid sock yarn of your choice, as long as gauge matches.)

This yarn is exceptionally soft, and requires some care to work with as it is quite loosely plied. But it easily repays the attention, forming a strong and supple fabric with a slight ‘halo’ and showing the stitch pattern beautifully.

Yarn dyed using Kool-Aid.

Needles: 2 x 2.5mm circular needles.

Gauge: 28 stitches x 20 rows = 10cm, over pattern using 2.5mm needles.

Finished Sizing: Fits a foot with diameter 23cm at widest part of the foot. Finished len

gth of foot is 23.5cm, length of leg is 22cm (measured in both cases from point of heel). For a wider foot or longer socks, you are likely to need a second skein of yarn.

Special Techniques: Figure of 8 cast on. Cabling without a cable needle (optional, but saves a whole lot of time) – I’ve attempted various methods, this tutorial looks like the simplest method over 2 stitches.

Abbreviations used in Pattern:

k = knit

p = purl

sl1 = slip next stitch purlwise

k1b = knit through the back of the loop

kfb = knit into front and back of the stitch

pfb = purl into front and back of the stitch

c2f = slip 1 stitch onto a cable needle held at the front of the work, knit next stitch from lef

t needle, knit stitch from the cable needle. (Or twist these 2 stitches as per the video tutorial linked above).

c2b = slip 1 stitch onto a cable needle held at the back of the work, knit next stitch from left needle, knit stitch from the cable needle. (Or twist these 2 stitches as per the video tutorial linked above).

w&t = wrap and turn. Slip next stitch purlwise, bring yarn between needles, slip stitch back so that the yarn has been wrapped around it. Turn work.

k2tog = knit next 2 stitches together

ssk = slip next 2 stitches separately knitwise, insert left needle tip into front of both stitches, and knit them together

p2tog = purl next 2 stitches together

Chart:

Sadie Stitch chart.

For foot, work stitch repeat 4 times, then the remaining 4 stitches. For leg, work stitch repeat 9 times, paying attention to the highlighted stitches on the first stitch of the relevant rounds. Chart created using Jacquie's Knitting Chart Maker (http://jacquie.typepad.com/Charts/knitChart.htm)

Sock ImagesPattern Stitch: (over 7 stitches and 20 rows). Final 4 stitches after the pattern repeat are for the foot only.

Row 1: [k1b, k2, k1b, k3], k1b, k2, k1b

Row 2: [k1b, p2, k1b, k3], k1b, p2, k1b

Rows 3-4: As rows 1-2

Row 5: [c2f, c2b, k3], c2f, c2b

Row 6: [p1, k2, p4], p1, k2, p1

Row 7: [k1, c2b, k4], k1, c2b, k1

Row 8: As row 6

Row 9: [c2b, c2f, k3], c2b, c2f

Row 10: As row 2

Rows 11-13: As rows 1-3

Row 14:  [k1b, p2, k1b, p3], k1b, p2, k1b

Rows 15-17: As rows 5-7

Row 18: k7

Rows 19-20: As rows 9-10.

Instructions:

Toe:

Using the figure of 8 method, cast on 8 stitches onto each of 2 circular needles (16 stitches). Knit 1 round on these stitches.

Increase Round: kfb, k till 2 stitches remain on Needle 1, kfb, k. Repeat on Needle 2. (20 stitches).

Work this round 3 more times (32 stitches).

Knit next round, then work Increase Round (36 stitches).

Work these 2 rounds 6 more times (60 stitches).

K next round, then work the Increase Round omitting one kfb on Needle 2. (63 stitches). You should have 32 stitches on Needle 1 (multiple of 7 + 4) and 31 stitches on Needle 2 (multiple of 7 + 3). K 1 round.

Foot:

Set up for foot pattern: Needle 1, [k1b, p2, k1b, k3] till 4 stitches remain on Needle 1, k1b, p2, k1b.

Work in stocking stitch over Needle 2 for whole of foot

Next round: start working foot pattern from chart, or follow written instructions for stitch pattern. Pattern repeats 4 times + 4 stitches over the top of the foot.

Continue as set until foot is 2 inches shorter than the desired length. (In my case, this was after 3 pattern repeats).

Gusset:

For the gusset, continue pattern over Needle 1, while increasing on alternate rounds on Needle 2 as follows: kfb, k until 2 stitches remain on Needle, kfb, k.  Continue until there are 47 stitches on Needle 2.

These stitches will be divided up as follows: 15 side stitches (Side 1), 17 cap stitches, 15 side stitches (Side 2).

If you are working the sole over a different number of stitches, see footnote for instructions on calculating the number of heel stitches you need.

Heel Cap:

K across the 15 stitches for Side 1. Slide these stitches onto Needle 1 or a piece of waste yarn while you work the heel cap. From the other end of Needle 2, slide the 15 stitches for Side 2 onto Needle 1 or a piece of waste yarn. Work heel cap over the remaining 17 central stitches only.

Row 1:  k, kfb, k until 2 stitches remain, w&t

Row 2: sl1, pfb, p until 2 stitches remain, w&t

Row 3: sl1, kfb, k until 3 stitches remain, w&t

Row 4: sl1, pfb, p until 3 stitches remain, w&t

Row5: sl1, kfb, k until 4 stitches remain, w&t

Row 6: sl1, pfb, p until 4 stitches remain, w&t

Continue as set, leaving 1 more stitch unworked at the end of the row each time, until the total number of stitches in the heel cap equals the orignal number of stitches in the sole of the foot – in this case, 31 stitches.

Next Row:  sl1, k across until 1 stitch remains on left needle, picking up wraps as you go – when you reach a wrapped stitch, slip it knitwise, then pick up the wrap with the point of the left needle. Slip the wrap knitwise, then insert the left needle point into the front of both the stitch and its wrap, and knit them together. Slide the 15 stitches for Side 2 back onto Needle 2 from the other needle or waste yarn. Ssk the last heel cap stitch and first side stitch. Turn work.

Next Row: sl1, p across until 1 stitch remains on left needle, picking up remaining wraps as you go – when you reach a wrapped stitch, slip it purlwise, then pick up the wrap with the point of the left needle. Slip the wrapped stitch back to the left needle, then p2tog with the stitch and its wrap. Slide the 15 stitches for Side 1 back onto Needle 2 from the other needle or waste yarn. P2tog the last heel cap stitch and first side stitch. Turn work.

Heel Flap:

Row 1: [sl1, k1] to last heel cap stitch, ssk with next side stitch, turn.

Row 2: p to last heel cap stitch, p2tog with next side stitch, turn.

Repeat these 2 rows until all side stitches have been incorporated into the heel flap. 31 stitches remain on Needle 2. Final Row: sl1, k across all remaining stitches on Needle 2.

Leg:

Work stitch pattern over all stitches on round until desired length is reached. (I did 3 pattern repeats here). If you are following the chart, take note of the highlighted stitches on rounds 6, 7, 8, 16, and 17. If you are not using the chart, you will need to do the following on these rows, at the beginning of the round only: rounds 6, 8 and 16: knit first stitch; rounds 7 and 17, purl first stitch. This will prevent a ‘jog’ at the start of the round.

Finish the leg pattern on round 3 or 13 of the pattern, to have a smooth transition to the ribbing on the cuff:

Cuff:

Ribbing pattern: [k1b, p2, k1b, p, k1b, p] repeat to end of round.

Work 15 rounds of ribbing, then cast off loosely in rib.

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*If you work this heel over a different number of stitches, here’s how to do the maths:

Firstly, decide how many rows you will want in your heel flap – 30 is a good number, but you may know that you need more. Also, calculate how many stitches you want for the cap of the heel as follows:

Take the number of sole stitches (before increasing) on Needle 2, and halve it.

  • If the total is an odd number and a half, add 1.5 to it. IE 31 sole stitches, halves to 15.5, + 1.5 = 17.
  • If the total is an even number and a half, add 2.5 to it. IE 33 sole stitches, halves to 16.5, +1.5 = 19.
  • If the total is an even number, add 2 to it. IE 32 sole stitches, halves to 16, + 2 = 18.
  • If the total is an odd number, add 3 to it. IE 30 sole stitches, halves to 15, +3 = 18.

The resulting number is how many stitches you will need to start the heel cap.

The total number of stitches you will need on Needle 2 after completing the gusset increases will be [heelflap stitches] + [heel cap stitches].

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Copyright Purplesteph 2009.

Please do: Use this pattern and tell other people about it.

Please don’t: Sell this pattern or completed items made using the pattern.