Byopia Press Advent Calendar 2020: Day Eight and Some Knitting

This isn’t a knitting blog, but I knit and I occasionally write about it. I have even posted knitting patterns. Today’s post contains one old pattern and one new one.

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From March 1, 2020:

Last summer when it was too hot to knit with wool, I knit several cotton scarves using the same pattern. The lower two in the image have been blocked, but the top one has not.

After some enquiries about the design, I knit the pattern again using a sock yarn (80% wool, 20% nylon) and wrote it out more carefully.

The finished sock yarn version uses two repeats each of the second and third pattern units. It was soft blocked and is 122 cm/48 in wide by 45 cm/18 in high. It weighs 56 grams, or just under 2 ounces, but I don’t know the yardage. You could use any yarn that was wearable next the skin of the recipient. (I can tolerate wool that many would consider ‘scratchy’.) Just remember that to get a nice open lace pattern, you need to use needles larger —about two sizes up— than are normally recommended for the weight of your yarn.

If you would like to try knitting it yourself, you can download Square Sequence Scarf:Shawl. I have never before written out a knitting pattern for others to use (other than stitch charts), so Be Warned. If you have never knit lace before, I suggest you try this free pattern by Dee O’Keefe instead. It has detailed explanations of absolutely everything!

Just a few tips:

When casting on, I start with a slip knot that can be removed by pulling on the free end. I cast on one more stitch than is called for (counting the slip knot) and pull out the slip knot after I have knit a row with the correct number of stitches.

I like to make a tab for starting my shawls and scarves because I like having more than one stitch in the borders and spine. I have written out the instructions in the pdf, but for extra clarity here are some pictures.

Ten rows have been knit for the tab and you are ready to pick up six stitches.

Six stitches have been picked up by picking up one stitch through the small loop at the end of each garter ridge and two stitches from the cast on edge.

The first two set-up rows have been knit. You can just make out the two purl stitches (stitch four and stitch eight) up against the needle in the last row.

When working with wool or silk, I find that the tab becomes almost invisible. With the corded cotton I was using last summer, there is a very slight dip in the upper edge of the knitting after blocking, but it was not too pronounced.

The pattern includes an option for creating garter stitch within the pattern before beginning the garter stitch edging. I like to do this to help prevent the lower edge of the knitting from curling. If you are working with a yarn that has no tendency to curl at the edge (most silks and cottons), then you don’t need to add that extra fussiness.

I often use Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-off for scarves and shawls. You can find pictorial instructions here. There are also multiple videos on Youtube.

Please let me know —use the Contact form— if you try out the pattern and you get into difficulties that seem to be my fault. I am not responsible for dropped stitches or knitting the wrong row, except when I do it to myself.  ; ]

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If I wear socks heavy enough to keep my ankles warm when it is chilly in the house/studio, my feet get too hot. This year I solved the problem: ankle warmers. The first pair (above) were knit with yarn left over from another project.

A friend got so excited about them that I knit a pair for her as well. If you want some for yourself, here is a (very approximate) pattern.

You will need about 66 g/2.25 oz. of sock yarn and 3.5 mm needles or whatever gives you a gauge of 24 stitches/24 ridges for 10cm/4 in. (This is not a particularly fitted pattern, and I will talk about how to adjust it.)

Ankle Warmers (Women’s Medium)

Do a Provisional Cast On of 60 stitches. (Purl Soho has clear videos of a one-step method and a two-step method. I used the latter.)

If you are using two colors, make the first row of stitches in one colour, then switch to the second colour for the first full ridge — 2 rows of knitting, then switch back to the first colour for the next ridge, and so on.

Knit all rows. (If working with two colours, change after every ridge/2 rows.)

When you have knit 15 ridges (30 rows + cast on row) you will need to knit some short rows for a little gusset. (This lets the ankle warmer sit lower over the foot.)

Knit 16 stitches, bring yarn forward, slip next stitch from the left needle to the right, bring yarn back, return slipped stitch to left needle. Turn work and knit to end of row.

Knit 14 stitches, bring yarn forward, slip next stitch from the left needle to the right, bring yarn back, return slipped stitch to left needle. Turn work and knit to end of row.

Repeat, decreasing the number of stitches by two each ridge until your last ridge is 4 stitches long.

Repeat the 4 stitch ridge.

Knit 6 stitches, bring yarn forward, slip next stitch from the left needle to the right, bring yarn back, return slipped stitch to left needle. Turn work and knit to end of row.

Repeat, increasing by 2 stitches, until you have knit a 16 stitch ridge.

Knit full row.

Continue until you have knit 15 ridges from the first full ridge after the gusset.

Knit one row.

Join last knit row and first knit row with a three-needle bind off. (Since I use the crochet chain cast on, I undo the chain loops one at a time and pick up the stitches on a double-ended needle before starting the bind off.)

Since the ankle warmer is basically a tube knit in garter stitch, you should be able to adapt the pattern to heavier yarn (fewer stitches, fewer rows) or change its size by decreasing or increasing the number of stitches and ridges.

I knit the pair for my friend in about eight evenings, so if you know someone with cold ankles and have some leftover yarn, you might still have time to knit these for Christmas.

About Byopia Press

I have been working in the book arts field for more than twenty years, and operating Byopia Press with my husband David since the late 1990s. I began producing artist's books and altered books in 2004.
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1 Response to Byopia Press Advent Calendar 2020: Day Eight and Some Knitting

  1. Pingback: Last Post for the Year and an Index for the Byopia Press Advent Calendar 2020 | Byopia Press

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