DIY Knitted Garter

I recently made this beautiful hand knitted garter for my upcoming wedding. It was so easy! If you can knit, you can easily make this project yourself. I used a 10 yard roll of blue silk ribbon from the craft store. I cast on 4 stitches onto size 2 needles leaving a long tail. I simply garter stitched back and forth until it was the length I wanted, and then bound off, leaving another tail. I used the two tails to tie the garter together and Voila!! Thanks to Julianne Smith for the original design idea.

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Simple Shawl

I certainly wasn’t the first to come up with this technique, nor will I be the last. As a beginner knitter I remember searching far and wide for a REALLY simple triangle shawl pattern that would knit up quickly, and I came up empty. I wrote this one up for my own records and to use when I was teaching beginners, and I posted it because I got some requests to make it public. Here’s the pattern I wrote up.

One more thing – it hasn’t been tested at all. Knit at your own risk and always buy extra yarn of the same dye lot if possible.

Simple Shawl

Materials:

One pair size 15 US needles (10 mm). (Unless you really prefer straight needles, I would recommend using circular needles with a cable length of 24-40″ to accommodate the width of the shawl. The project is knit flat.)

820 (1230, 1640, 2050) yards /Medium (Large, XL, XXL) Malabrigo merino worsted yarn in color of your choice

OR

Substitute any worsted or aran weight yarn.

Instructions:

First, divide your yarn into an even number of at least two balls. OR the skeins can be wound into center pull balls where you will pull from both the center and the outside of the wound ball simultaneously. The reason for doing this is that the yarn will be held double while you knit. 

With yarn held double (holding two strands of yarn,) cast 3 stitches onto your size 15 needle.

Row 1: Knit

Row 2: Knit 1, KFB (Knit into the front and back of the stitch), Knit 1 (Increased by 1 stitch, 4 stitches total)

Row 3: Knit

Row 4: Knit 1, KFB, KFB, Knit 1 (Increased by 2 stitches, 6 stitches total)

Row 5: Knit

Row 6: Knit 1, KFB, knit until two stitches remain, KFB, Knit 1


Repeat rows 5 and 6, alternating one knit row and one increase row until piece measure 22 (Small) (26(Med), 30(Lar), 34(XL)) inches from bottom tip to the top, or until you run out of yarn.

I like to put a split ring marker on one side of my fabric to help me remember which side is the increase side, and which side is the “Knit across” side. Once I get going, I forget which side is which, and newer knitters especially may not be able to tell which side they’re on by looking at their stitches.

Bind off loosely and weave in loose ends.

This is a very easy pattern for a beginner who is looking to learn how to do increasing without too much work. 

*** Author’s Note: The method of “increase” I used was to Knit Front and Back (KFB), however, you could modify the pattern and use whatever increase method you prefer. More information about different ways of increasing is here: http://www.knittinghelp.com/videos/increases

This shawl is done by knitting two strands of yarn together at the same time. I used two strands of the same color, but you could combine two different colors for a funky, twisted look.

Shown below in Lion Brand Wool-Ease Worsted Weight in Oxford Grey. This size (which I would call Extra-small) used two skeins and had a bit left over. For the shawl below, I picked up some stitches on the edges and created two “ties.” I wasn’t crazy about how they looked, though, which is why I didn’t include this in the finished pattern I wrote.


The above shawl was made to auction for a wonderful community theatre group called Twelfth Night Productions. They are located in West Seattle.

Startitis, I has it.

I don’t know what happened to me this week, but I’ve got a major case of startitis. I wasn’t really feeling a lot of the stuff I was working on, and due to that and a couple of health issues that cropped up in early summer (I’m totally on the mend and back at it), knitting production around here had slowed down to a crawl.

Since the last time I blogged, I’ve finished THREE hats. First off the needles was my sockhead masterpiece:

It’s Dream in Color Smooshy with cashmere in Evening Flame knit in the Sockhead Hat pattern on Size 3 needles. I used addi turbos for this and really flew.

Next up was a very quick knit that I did for the current Prairie Yarn Over charity project: Caps for Kids. Our goal this fall is 100 hats. Here are two I made:

The first, striped hat: 

I made this hat up as I went along. The stripes are in a fibonacci sequence (each number of rows is equal to the sum of the previous two rows, starting 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, etc.). 

I cast on 104 stitches using size 6 dpns, placed a marker, worked in K2, P2 rib for one inch, then started stockinette striping using the sequence. I used techknitting’s jogless stripes tutorial and carried the colors up the inside of the hat. I worked in plain stockinette for 5 inches (a total of 6 inches when you add in the inch of rib) before starting the decreases. I did the decreases as (Knit 11, K2tog) around, Knit one row, (K10, K2tog) around, knit one row, (K9, K2tog) around, knit one row, etc. etc. continuing my striping pattern as I continued to decrease. I got down to just a few stitches left on the needle and cut the yarn and pulled through the remaining stitches nice and tight. 

The second, plain grey hat:

This hat is the same pattern as the striped hat, just without the stripes. It’s a little small on my model (Joe, an adult man) so it should be perfect for a middle school aged boy or girl. 


I love Berroco Comfort for charity work because it looks exactly the same after a dozen washes as it did when it was new, and it doesn’t want for softness either. It’s inexpensive and comes in a large range of colors. Perfect for charity. 


So, on to the startitis. First off, I’ve been intending to make some Hawkeye themed beer mitts since the day the pattern came out. I have had the yarn sitting, languishing, but now that football season and fall are just around the corner I felt I’d better get a move on. 


This is Lion Brand Hometown USA which was the only washable super bulky I could find in the entire town of Iowa City. Seriously, I checked everywhere. I’m not madly in love with the color gold I’m using – I would’ve probably preferred a bit more in the direction of the old gold, but this works. I got motivated to cast these on because our speaker at the Prairie Yarn Over 1st Anniversary Party, iowaknitguy, had done a pair exactly as I had planned, and they looked awesome! 


The second thing I cast on came from stash yarn also – they’re the Rose’s Wrist Warmers pattern and I’m doing them in Cascade 220 superwash. I, like many other knitters, was distracted watching a very emotional scene in Doctor Who by the wrist warmers a character was wearing. She’s holding her hands to her face, crying, and all I can think is, “Man, I bet somebody on Ravelry has put that pattern up.” And I was right. I love that these make a really beautiful, subtle way for me to proclaim my fandom without having to wear a huge, bulky scarf. I’d wear them with or without the show reference, because they’re just gorgeous. I’d probably be much farther along if I didn’t stop every few rows to admire how the cables are coming out. 

I can’t wait to wear these this fall with an open-sleeved jacket or a zip up hoodie. The color is very vibrant. Yes, there are a couple of errors. I crossed my yarn in front of a cable in a spot. Personally my cabling has never been up to par – I’ve always got too loose edges and little holey places. Someday I’ll get good at it. I’m unconcerned about it.

Finally, and this project isn’t even up on Ravelry yet, I had an urge late last night that I just had to indulge. Yesterday I picked up a couple of gorgeous skeins of Tosh Vintage at Home Ec Workshop.

When I bought them I figured I was just feeding my stash but suddenly last evening I started winding and cast on a Daybreak. I think these colors will stripe beautifully together, and I’ve been toying in my head around the idea of worsted weight shawls lately. I think the small size daybreak done in a worsted weight just might be a cute little kerchief, and this yarn is soooo soft. I’m doing it on my size 6 harmony circulars from knitpicks.

Apologies for the lighting there, it was very overcast today so this is just a house light on my porch. I tell you, there are worse ways to spend a friday night, than knitting with tosh on lovely needles, out on my porch with this guy as a companion:


In fact, I’m gonna go turn on Beck’s new(ish) album Morning Phase for the zillionth time (I’m obsessed!), make a fresh cup of decaf tea, and get back to it.