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Knitting Seed Stitch or Moss Stitch

 

Okay, I know how to knit but it has been many years since I’ve actually knitted anything and not really sure I ever really completed a project in knitting – maybe in my yarn nightmares.

Well, my daughter and my yarn partner, gave me as a gift 2 skeins of a beautiful Malabrigo Mecha (color Jupiter) about 260 yards and challenged me to knit something with it versus crochet.  And it sat on my computer desk looking at me and oh how I wanted to crochet an awesome cowl for myself, but I finally picked up a pair of bamboo needles and a skein of that yarn and started to cast on stitches.

I did some internet surfing about knitting the seed stitch and the moss stitch.  I like the idea of the textured look they provide and the fact that there is really no right or wrong side to your finished item.

So I decided upon a nice long scarf as my knitted project.  I cast on an even number of stitches (28) and away I went.  I elected to knit 2, purl 2, knit 2, purl 2 through my first row.  Second row was purl 2, knit 2, purl 2, knit 2 to the end of that row.  Third row was purl 2, knit 2 again and finally the Fourth row started out as a knit 2, purl 2, knit 2 purl 2 to the end of the row.

So I was knitting with an even number of stitches, like the seed stitch but my design was in a 4 row increment of knit/purl, purl/knit,  purl/knit,  knit/purl like the moss stitch.  And doing the same stitch in 2 stitches before alternating to the opposite stitch for 2 times.  Hopefully, I haven’t lost you yet but I really “love” the pattern created with just knitting 2 stitches then purling 2 stitches using the 4 row moss stitch design.

It makes up with a very nice edge, looks the same on either side, which will be perfect for a scarf, and the texture is just what I was looking for.

I have already added on my second skein of yarn and I expect the finished scarf to be about 7″ wide x 60″ long when completed.  I used a size 7 bamboo needle for this project too.

This is a design that I’m sure can be made with a wide variety of different yarn types with appropriate sized needles.  You can cast on whatever stitch count gives you the width you are looking for but remember my pattern was an even number of cast on stitches.  I think most moss stitch designs cast on an odd number of stitches.

Has been fun to share this “knitting” project with my daughter as well as venturing out with some new yarn techniques.  A great way to start off the new year.

HAPPY CREATING!!

 

 

 

Knitted Cowl

Still perfecting my knitting skills but am very pleased with my completed light weight cowl, which I added a ruffled flower with a very nice decorative button to give it some pizzazz.

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I used a wonderful Madeleine Tosh DK yarn (Optic) for a cool black and white design. My needles were a size #8 and I completed the entire cowl using the Seed stitch. I’m sure a more experienced knitter would know how to do this in the round but I was more comfortable doing a provisional cast-on http://www.knittinghelp.com/video/play/invisible-provisional-cast-on   and then completing a three needle bind-off. http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEfall06/FEATfall06TT.html

Once I had completed my bind off, I just gathered the cowl (using a long running stitch out of the same yarn) along the bind-off edge, tied if off with a square knot and then sewed on flower and button.

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My finished cowl was approximately 7 1/2″ wide X 26″ long. I just knit until I had used up the entire skein of yarn (225 yards).

Now as a somewhat beginner knitter, I really enjoyed the seed stitch but took me a little bit to figure out the pattern. Directions for the seed stitch just say, knit the purls, and purl the knits and I had to learn what a knit stitch and purl stitch looked like when I began my second row. Actually, it is a good thing to learn because if for some reason you have to put your knitting down in the middle of a row to make yourself that cup of awesome vanilla tea, you can pick it back up and know by looking at your stitch shapes what stitch you need to do next. Check out this site for good pictures of what a knit stitch and purl stitch looks like.  http://www.craftsy.com/blog/2013/04/how-to-knit-seed-stitch/

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Will definitely do another seed stitch pattern again 🙂

HAPPY CREATING!!

Happy Mother’s Day

Wishing everyone a Happy Mother’s Day and hope your day has been extra special too!!

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Just wanted to share this awesome “yarn bouquet” that I received as a gift.  As much as I love to have fresh flowers around, this bouquet is just as special as I get to look at it and decide what do I want to create!!

This bouquet was shipped through Jimmy Beans Wool website and I received 3 gorgeous skeins of a beautiful Madeleine Tosh DK yarn with two different sizes of knitting needles.  It came with a lovely pattern that I downloaded through Ravelry called Sylkie Cowl by Gudrum Johnson.

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I also downloaded 2 other “free” patterns from Ravelry:  one is called Mara by Amy Hendrix which is a triangle shawl and the other is called Honey Cowl by Ann Maria.  Both of these patterns are really cool too!!

However, I think I am going to give the Sylkie Cowl a try.  As I have mentioned before, my real yarn love is crocheting but I am adventuring out in the knitting world and this pattern does offer some new techniques for me to try.

If you are looking for a unique gift to get your favorite yarning person, then check out JB’s website, I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Wish me luck as I attempt this new pattern.  Hey, if I think it looks horrible, I can just frog it and find another “crochet” pattern~~ ha, ha, ha!!

HAPPY CREATING!!

Spool Knitting Finished Project

Well, I finally finished my “cattail” and bound it off from my 4 pronged spool.  My cord is 195″ long or almost 5  1/2 yards.  I am planning to roll my cord into a circle and use it as a trivet for my kitchen.

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When rolled, the trivet will measure 9″ across which will be a perfect size for plates or bowls to keep the heat directly off my table.  It will also look great as a decorated piece under my kitchen centerpiece.

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Because I used up all the thread that I had to make the cord, I am going to whip stitch it together using all 6 strands of a coordinating DMC floss.  Beginning in the center and rolling as I go, I will whip stitch it together using a cross stitch type needle which has a little bit of a blunt tip so that I don’t snag any of my threads.

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This is a wonderful activity for a child to do and a super way to use up all those “little balls” of yarn leftover from other knit or crochet projects.  As you collect your bits and pieces of leftover yarn, just tie them together with a secure square knot (right over left and left over right) and keep adding to make a big multi-colored skein.  I would try to keep your category of yarn about the same; that is, I wouldn’t tie a chunky (category 5) to a sock weight (category 2).  How fun to see all the different colors come together!!

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Enjoy making your own “cattail” ~~ you can find more information on using knitting Nancy’s here.  FYI: I did purchase a super little tool from my local big box store (knittingboard.com) which worked great to lift my lower loops easily over the upper loops on my spool.  🙂

HAPPY CREATING!!

 

Knitting Nancy Project

I have still been knitting on my “cattail” using my handmade knitting nancy spool.   It is a very easy, relaxing type of yarn craft that I will pick up for those times when I don’t want to have to concentrate to hard on a project or count stitches as I crochet.

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You can check out my Knitting Nancy blog to see exactly how to make a spool and how to start your yarn to begin forming your tail!  As you can see by the picture, my “tail” is quite long, presently measuring 131 inches or a little over 3 1/2 yards long.  My goal is to roll my tail into a circle to make a nice trivet or mat for a hot bowl to protect the dining table top.

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At present, it measures almost 8 inches in diameter and I think I will make it just a little wider but probably not more than 10 inches.  Of course, this will leave me with just enough yarn to make a small pom pom!!  Yarn scraps?? hmm – working on some ways to use them up because I just cannot bear to trash them or maybe I will find a local 4H group and donate all my tiny yarn balls to them.  Like that idea!!

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Anyways I digress, my trivet will be sewn together with a nice quilting weight cotton thread.  Connecting Threads has some great collections of these threads in a wide variety of colors too, which are wonderful for machine or hand sewing projects.

I think I started a new skein of yarn for this project, a category 4 yarn, worsted weight.  I just used a size 5 hook to lift my lower loop over the top loop to create the knit looking tail.

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When I am ready to bind off, I will do another blog with close up pictures so you can see the actual binding off process.

Some fun ideas to use your “tail” for would be a set of coasters, cool bookmarks, glue some googlie eyes and make a snake for a little one, make three tails and sew together at one end and braid them for a bracelet or headband, placemats even a small rug.

I’m looking forward to completing this one and having it ready for my kitchen table!!

HAPPY CREATING!!

 

 

Ideas for Knitting Nancy “Tail”

I haven’t actually researched the correct terminology for the knitted cord that is created from completing your loops on a Knitting Nancy which really look similar to an I-cord; however, I still like to refer to it as my “cat’s tail”!! 🙂

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Also, have given some thought to designing a unique wrapped necklace.  Leaving long loops and covering the joined area with a really one-of-a-kind tubular bead.  Hmm, maybe I will just have to keep the necklace for myself if I end up making that idea!!

I’ve been into yarn bowls too and I think I could take a ceramic bowl and wrap the tail around the outside of it for a size pattern, stitch together, and then maybe create a unique loop edge as a finishing touch.

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I know whatever I design, my “cat’s tail” still needs to be longer, I am planning to have a finished length of 160 inches or 406.4 cm.  So when I really need some down time that doesn’t require any counting of stitches or decreases/increases or watching my gauge, I just sit with my favorite cup of tea and go round and round with my spool knitting.  Only having to untwist my tail periodically to keep it smooth.  It makes for a very relaxing time for me. 🙂

HAPPY CREATING!!

  • Tip:  I will use a coordinating DMC floss (2-3 strands) as my sewing thread when I begin to stitch my cord together.  Will probably have to do some pinning also to hold my coils in place.

 

Yarning with a “Knitting Nancy” spool

Using a knitting nancy or spool knitting is a great tool/technique to introduce a youngster to the wonders of yarn.   It is a very easy yarn method to create a nice knitted or braided cord that could be designed for bracelets, trivets, coasters, etc.  It is really an awesome technique that anyone would find fun to do!! SONY DSC

I have actually recycled a thick cardboard thread spool that formally held 1200 yards of mercerized cotton thread for machine quilting by Coats and Clark.  The spool is 1″ in diameter with the opening being 1/2″ in diameter.  The length of the spool is 2  3/4″ long.  I like this size because it fits a child’s small hand really well.  You can purchase knitting spools too.

I hammered in four brads using ones that had a large flat head to them.  It helps to keep the yarn from sliding off the brad when making your loops.  Once you have your spool ready, select your yarn.  I would recommend using a 4 ply worsted weight yarn and a metal crochet hook size 5 (1.90mm).

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To begin, take your yarn and drop it through the hole and let it hang out about 2 or 3 inches from the bottom.  Now to “cast” on your loops, you will be turning the spool in a clockwise direction but going around each brad in a counter-clockwise direction one at a time.

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After you have made your loop on each brad, you take your yarn and place it right above the first loop made and with your crochet hook, lift the bottom loop up and over the yarn and brad.  Leaving one loop on the brad.  Spin your spool in your hand slightly and do that same thing again on the next brad.  Keep turning the spool in your hand, make another yarn wrap and continue lifting the bottom loop up and over the top yarn on each brad.  Before you know it, you will have a great icord, braided loop or “cattail” coming out of your spool at the bottom.

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Now just keep making your loops until you have your “tail” as long as you want it to be.  Once you have reached the desired length, you will need to bind off your work from the knitting spool.

When you are ready to “cast off” don’t make a yarn wrap, just grab the loop of the last stitch made and lift it onto the brad to its immediate left.  Lift the bottom loop over that loop, now grab the remaining loop left on that brad and lift it onto the brad to its immediate left.  Continue doing this until you only have one loop left on the last brad.  Cut your yarn and carefully lift the last loop off the brad and place your cut yarn through the last loop and pull snuggly securing all your stitches.  Now you have a wonderful knitted tube that can be used for a wide variety of creative projects!!

I have discussed this technique before but have updated my pictures to help you see the process better!! 🙂

HAPPY CREATING!!

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