There is little more gratifying than putting on a newly finished jumper, wearing it out and having someone complement you, is there?
I find that just hearing about someone else’s newly finished jumpers, cardigans and shawls seems to give that same feeling of satisfaction, too. Oh, I do love to hear about what the yarn is, where it came from and what it was like to use. I want to know the new techniques that you tried, and the inevitable unpicking that has happened somewhere along the way. Oh, and then of course which pattern you used, where I can find it and then you can tell me all the interesting stuff about the changes you made along the way.
A little while ago I came across this wonderful video by Kristy Glass. It cheered me up immensely on an afternoon when I was a little down. She filmed it at the New York Sheep and Wool Festival, held at Rhinebeck and known in shorthand as such. There has become a tradition to knit a new sweater for the occasion and she wanted to find out who had made what in 2016.
I’d recommend making a cup of tea, putting your feet up and watching a whole hour (yes!) of knitters answer Kristy’s call to ‘Tell me about your Rhinebeck Sweater.’
Still chilly round here, isn’t it? We went for a walk along the shore at one of our local haunts, Langstone, at the weekend to blow away the cobwebs and I could definitely have done with taking this scarf with me.
So, do you fancy a nice quick knit that is completely potato chippy, as the Knitmore Girls would say? You know, when you just keep having to have a few more, knit a couple more rows. I really don’t think that crispy has the same resonance; maybe Pringles are more where it’s at – we all know the tagline there!
Anyway, back to the knitting. Short rows are a nifty technique to shape your knitting in 3 dimensions. They’re often used in bust shaping and for bags, but learning them by knitting little-squares-with-a-bulge-in can be a bit dispiriting. However, making an awesome, snuggly scarf is a much better way to practise!
This pattern is good for advanced beginners. It will teach you the basics of short row shaping as well as making eyelets in the fabric.
I used Mirasol Llama Una, but if you don’t have any handy, you will need a smooth aran weight yarn plus appropriate needles.
So onwards for some short-row Pringle knitting… hmmm, too golf jumper-esque?
You will need:
3 skeins Mirasol Llama Una and 4mm needles
Yo: take the yarn forwards over the needle from back to front and through to the back again
K2tog: knit two stitches together
W&T: wrap and turn. Keeping the yarn in back, slip the next stitch purlwise from the left needle to the right needle. Bring the yarn forward as if to purl and then slip the stitch from the right needle back to the left needle. Bring the yarn to the back of the work as if to knit, turn the work and you are ready to purl back.
Cast on 40 stitches.
Row 1: knit
Row 2: k1 *yo, k2tog. Rpt from * to end.
Row 3: knit
Work ruffle pattern as follows:
Row 4: k18, w&t, p18
Row 5: k15, w&t, p15
Row 6: k12, w&t, p12
Row 7: k9, w&t, p9
Row 8: k6, w&t, p6
Row 9: K1, *yo, k2tog. Rpt from * to end of row
Row 10: p18, w&t, k18
Row 11: p15, w&t, k15
Row 12: p12, w&t, k12
Row 13: p9, w&t, k9
Row 14: p6, w&t, k6
Row 15: purl all stitches
Row 16: knit
Row 17: k1 *yo, k2tog. Rpt from * to end.
Row 18: knit
Repeat rows 4-18 until the scarf as long as you would like, or you almost run out of yarn, making sure that you end on row 17.
Cast off, weave in the ends, and wear your fabulous, snuggly scarf out and about!
A couple of months ago my hair was about shoulder length and had got to that point, catching on my collar and my necklaces enough to be persistantly annoying, but not really long enough to make a good up-do. This, as always, caused me the dilemma: to cut it into a bob again, or to grow it on further and wear it curly, long. (Once longer than shoulder length it takes about 30 minutes to straighten and frankly I have more exciting things to do.)
In order to put off the decision a little longer, I sometimes started to wear my hair with a knitted hairband to get it off my neck. I quickly realised that it would need a little more help and decided to make a turban. I used Susan Crawford’s 1940s-inspired Greta Turban pattern and it turned out to be a great asset to the summer months.
I rather like it, and once I have grown my hair a little longer I’ll be wearing it all the damn time too!
I really enjoyed knitting it up in Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift which I’d not tried before, and the pattern: the lovely mossy texture of trinity stitch is really easy to remember, making it a lovely accompaniment to watching a bit of Miss Marple on the telly.
Oh, and the alter ego? At school one teacher persistantly called me either Greta or Bridget instead of Ingrid. I wasn’t so keen on Bridget, but Greta somehow had a more exciting ring to it, so I’d answer to that.
There is no tension given, but as I know I knit rather loosely, I went down a needle size to that given. This has actually made me a smaller turban than the original, but it still fits me fine.
I did the ties differently to those in the original pattern. As my turban turned out a little smaller, continuing on until the ties measured 12 inches would have made them out of proportion, so I stopped at around 8 inches instead and tied them differently to finish off as well as it seemed to suit me more.
I'm Ingrid Babbidge: a maker, writer and by far a do-er.
I'm a part-time textile historian specialising in the interwar years: in particular, knitting, haberdashery and textiles for interiors. I'm also a textile artist, craft skills teacher, brainstormer and erstwhile museum dweller.
At the moment, I'm the one that's usually chasing a tiny bum-shuffling girl... well, that's when I'm not trying to get some knitting done!