Sunday, 6 September 2015

Unravelling Old Projects: Musings on Reckless Beginner Knitting and Body Image

In the interest of frugality, I will be unravelling a project from the very early stages of my 'knitting career'. This was a time when knitting a gauge swatch was such a bore, adequate measuring (of myself and the swatch) appeared mysterious and incredibly complicated, blocking didn't exist and, due to a lack of familiarity with materials, I habitually chose the most unsuitable yarns for my projects. 

Hopelessly Oversized Asymmetrical Cardigan (completed circa 2010 / 2011)

I'm sure many other beginner knitters will be familiar with this cavalier attitude: You feel excited by the very fact that you mastered the basics of knitting and you just want to get on with it. Every project therefore turns into a test, attempting new techniques and more challenging pieces, rather than paying attention to the necessary groundwork, i.e. jumping through the hoops of all the preparatory steps before casting-on in earnest.  


I adopted this rather nonchalant attitude in two of my earliest projects: a jumper and an asymmetrical cardigan. And even though every seasoned knitter drew my attention to the importance of gauge, selecting suitable materials or the necessity of blocking, I chose to ignore all of this well-intentioned advice, knowing in the back of my mind that I was en route to Disappointment Central.


Friday, 4 September 2015

Exploring Basic Shapes: The Knitted Star

An end to a thoroughly unproductive day, in which I merely managed to complete the pattern notes for a basic knitted star in preparation for another upcoming project, which - going by the speed it's taken to complete these notes - will take a little while yet. 

Without further ado, here are the instructions for a basic star, which is worked in the round on double-pointed needles. The star's outer edges are shaped with short rows. The size of the star can be modified by increasing or reducing the total number of stitches before working the spikes on the outer perimeter.

Knitted Star
Materials Required
  • 4 double-pointed needles (dpns)
  • Approximately 10 - 30 grams of yarn (matching the needle size of the dpns) 
  • Scissors 
  • Darning Needle

Set - Up
  • Cast-on 7 stitches in whichever method you are most comfortable with (using a dpn)
  • As if knitting an I - Cord, bring the yarn to the first cast-on stitch
  • K1, KFB, K3, KFB, K1 [ 9 stitches in total]
  • Divide these 9 stitches evenly on three dpns and join in the round
Knitted Star after completion of first increase row 

Body of Star

Row 1: K9 
Row 2: KFB into all stitches [18 stitches]
Row 3: K 18
Row 4: *KFB, K2; repeat from * to end [24 stitches]
Row 5: K24
Row 6 *KFB, K3; repeat from * to end [30 stitches]
Row 7: K30
Row 8*KFB, K4; repeat from * to end [36 stitches]
Row 9: K36
Row 10*KFB, K5; repeat from * to end [42 stitches]
Row 11: K42

Please note: For a larger or smaller star, you can continue to increase the stitch count (adding 6 stitches on every even row) or decide to start the shaping of the spikes before you reach 42 stitches. Instead of utilising KFB increases, it is also possible to increase the stitch count with 'yarn overs'. This will result in a lace star.


Knitted Star - Detail

Before you start shaping the points, you should ensure that each dpn holds an even number of stitches. Half of the stitches on every needle will be shaped into one of the six outer points.


Shaping of the Outer Points


Shaping the Outer Points

Row 1: K7, turn (do not wrap the stitch when turning!)
Row 2: P7
Row 3: Sl1, K1, PSSO, K3, K2Tog, turn
Row 4: P5
Row 6: Sl1, K1, PSSO, K1, K2Tog, turn
Row 7: P3
Row 8: Sl1, K1, K1
Row 9: P2tog
Row 10: Bind-off remaining, break yarn

Proceed to shape the remaining five outer points in the same fashion.

A star is born.


Knitted Star


For pattern support, please feel free to contact me via Ravelry (ClariceAsquith), Twitter (@Slipstitched), leave a comment below or by e-mail: clarice.asquith@googlemail.com.


For a link collection to all original designs on the blog, please visit this link.

This pattern is for personal use only and may not be reproduced for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2015 Clarice Asquith. All rights reserved. http://makedoandmendnovice.blogspot.com


Wednesday, 2 September 2015

OMG it's huge: The Picot Pi is finally blocking

A long overdue update on the Picot Pi


It's finally blocking. And, as expected, it's huge.

Bed vs Picot Pi: 


Picot Pi Blocking



Detailed pattern notes will be up on the blog shortly. More information on the project is available here.


Picot Pi Lace Detail

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

The Weekly Swatch: The Honeycomb Stitch

Honeycomb Knit Stitch 

The Honeycomb Knit Stitch as featured above is an uncomplicated stitch motif (no purling, just knitting!), resulting in a dense, yet flexible, texture, which is ideal for a wide variety of wintery garments and accessories. These tend to be designed to retain heat, whilst remaining breathable; and the Honeycomb Stitch fulfils these design requirements perfectly. 


Honeycomb Knit Stitch Sample


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