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November 2015

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My Knitting Patterns? Just Like Buses

November 8, 2015

Seriously – they all come along at once! Yes, two knitting patterns in two weeks; I was so successful at getting myself moving with the capelet pattern last week that some of the motivation stuck with me up to this weekend.  I was also motivated by the amazing interest shown in last week's pattern for The Hug on Ravelry – as at right now, it's been favourited 513 times and downloaded by 1,081 people.  Gulp.  Amazeballs!  Of course it is free, so that always helps… 😉

Quite honestly, with today's pattern, I do feel like a bit of a fraud because all I've really done is turn a Purl Soho free scarf pattern into a cowl pattern and change the yarn.  I would love to be knitting with Purl Soho yarn but the shipping and customs costs to get it in the UK are prohibitive. I keep hoping that Love Knitting will one day become a stockist for them…  Meanwhile, my favourite Malabrigo Merino Worsted runs on as a fabulous sub!

So this week's pattern is for my quilted lattice cowl.  The one pictured below is the very first one I made that went to keep the lovely Emma of Hole House warm (she makes fabulous bags – do check out her work). This is the 'Simply Taupe' colourway; such a gorgeous shade and with the added benefit of being the same colour as Baileys, which gives me a nice warm feeling – when I think of it, and when I drink it 😀

As I've said before, I'm not great at getting my head down and writing patterns generally but, with this one, I put it off more because it felt like I might be stating the obvious.  This is because, if you have a bit of knitting experience, you really don't need my pattern – just use the original one on Purl Soho's fab site (where they frequently post fab free patterns), start with a provisional cast on, knit until it's somewhere between 55 and 57 inches long and graft the ends together.  However, over the last year or so, I've got my thick head around the fact that lots of less experienced knitters really like the confidence that a pattern to make a specific item gives them, so I decided that it is worthwhile to put it out there.

You can find and download the pattern for free right here on Ravelry.  You can also see the other colourways I've made on my Ravelry project page, but I thought I'd show them to you here too.  This one is knitted in the 'Pearl' shade and went to live with Kirsti in Washington:

This one is in the Prink Frost shade and is in my Etsy shop at the moment:

And this is currently on my needles and is a commission for Susannah.  The colour is Moss – not one I would have necessarily chosen myself because I usually prefer a semi solid to a solid colour, but I love it:

My next commission for this one is to knit it with Rowan Kidsilk Haze Eclipse in the beautiful blue 'Pisces' shade for the lovely cowl addicted Sara.  I made the scarf with this yarn last year in the silver shade and whilst I loved the scarf, it wasn't a lot of fun to knit – it took an age to do and this yarn is not great for knitting as the metallic thread in it separates out as you tension it through your fingers.  This doesn't happen at all when I crochet with it, which is strange…  Anyway, this was the beginnings of that scarf – how sparkly? 😀

When I first read the Purl Soho instructions for the lattice or trellis stitch, I will admit that I was a bit stumped at first, although I am a bit slow…  Because of this, I thought it would be worthwhile to put together a few photos to help anyone who, like me, doesn't immediately 'get' the written instructions – some of us are just more visual, aren't we?!

Judging by the comments on the Purl Soho scarf pattern page, you might not immediately see how to get those strands laying across the front of the work.  It really is as simple as it sounds – rather than having the yarn at the back of the work as you usually do when doing the knit stitch, you bring it to the front, before you start slipping the stitches and then take it back to the back before you knit the next stitch in the pattern, which fixes the strand in place at 6 stitch intervals, like this:

In the beginning, take your time on the rows where you add the strands to the work (rows 2 and 6) and make sure that you're adjusting the stitches and the strands sitting on the right hand needle so that the strands are at the same tension as the stitches in the Goldilocks fashion – not too tight, not too loose, but just right 🙂

Row 4 was the first time I felt a bit stumped, so these photos will walk you through the things that could be confusing.  So here we are, coming up to a stitch that we have to knit 'under' (in the pattern, abbreviated as k1uls):

So we slip our right needle under the strand / thread:

Push the right needle into the stitch as usual:

Then knit it and take it off the left needle as usual:

And carry on knitting:

The beginning and end of row 6 was also less than straitforward at first.  After you've made the purl at the beginning, keep the yarn to the front and slip the next 3 stitches before taking the yarn to the back of the work, ready to knit the next stitch:

Then when you get to the last 6 stitches, slip 3 with the yarn in front and keeping it there, purl the purl stitch:

This is how it looks after you've purled:

Next, how were you supposed to work those beginning and end strands you'd laid down in row 6 when you got to row 8?  The answer is: in exactly the same way as any other 'knit under' stitch, you just need to knit under the last knit stitch before the purl, like this:

So it looks like this:

I hope that this mini photo tutorial will be useful to someone and that anyone who decides to download the pattern has fun knitting it.  Feel free to comment or message me here, on Ravelry or on Facebook if you have any questions about the pattern or techniques 🙂

That might be it for knitting patterns for a little while, although I've still got plenty on my list to get finished off.  My next will hopefully be a full booklet for my Shaded English Rose Tweed cowl in several different versions, although that's not likely to be free since it is taking a lot of work to perfect! 😀