Category Archives: free pattern

Inferno Legwarmers – 2 ways

At Knit the Classics, participants are challenged to work on a knitted or otherwise crafted project to parallel the ‘classic’ novel selection of each month. It’s sort of an online book club with the option of putting your crafting skills to work at the same time. The May 2007 selection was ‘The Inferno’ by Dante Alighieri. So, naturally, I decided to make legwarmers with flames on them. You know, so the flames of Hell can literally lick at your heels. That makes sense, right? ;)

Inferno1large Inferno4

Download the free pattern here:
InfernoLegwarmersPDF

[EDIT]: Hey, look, now it’s a prize-winning pattern, too! Aw, shucks.

Yarn: Patons Classic Merino in ‘black’and ‘regency’. You would need 2 balls of black and 1 ball of regency if you make 1 of each version or if you make both with the flame pattern, and 1 ball of each colour if you are making both with the striped version.
Length: 16.5 ins
Size: To fit leg circumference 14-16 ins around at upper calf.
Needles: 4.5mm and 3.5mm DPNs
Cast on: May 22
Cast off: June 2
Notes: Since I couldn’t decide between the flame motif and the nine circles (one for each of the circles of hell through which Dante descends), I decided to do one of each. There are instructions for both included in the pattern. There is also a vertical band of k1, p1 ribbing at the front and back of the legwarmer to add a bit more cling and structural integrity.

I must say quite like the contrast between the black and the red/orange variegated – it’s one of the new variegated shades of Patons Classic Merino and this was a fun excuse to try it out since I’ve only ever used the solids. And since it is officially June and now in the land of red/black/metallics for Project Spectrum, I suppose I could count this as my first project for that too, right? Look at that, it’s a two-fer!

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Like a little sandal-sized hug

These:

 

Socklets3

Are going to help me wear these:

 

Socklets2

Every spring I go through the same song and dance when sandals weather comes around. I rotate through the 5 or 6 pairs of sandals in my closet (all of which are comfort sandals, mind you, no high heels or flashy beach sandals or nothin’), each of which will bruise and blister my feet horribly in a slightly different location. After 3 weeks or so, my feet and the sandals reach some kind of truce and the blisters stop. But those 3 weeks make me want to whimper. And we’re talking any sandals, here, thongs, slides, wedges, buckles, t-straps…There’s some combination of the arch of my foot and the brisk pace of my walking (walking is transportation for me) that just does me in every year, for a while. I have blisters on top of blisters.

So I decided to put the knitting on it and took up some more of that leftover bit of Lorna’s Laces from the Endpaper Mitts, and made myself these little socklets. They’re stupid fast, and while I’d be willing to bet lots of money I’m not the only knitter out there to invent something like this, I’ll tell you what I did. It’s very simple:

1. Cast on 64 sts with 2.25mm needles (This # can be sized up or down depending on the best size for you – as long as you cast on a multiple of 4 sts). Join to work in round. (This is the same # of sts I would normally use in a sock foot, on one needle size smaller than what I would normally use. I get “regular” sock gauge of 8 sts/inch on 2.75mm needles, so going down to 2.25mm needles puts me around 8.5/9 sts/inch.)

2. Work k1, p1 ribbing for 5 rounds.

3. Work k3, p1 ribbing until the piece measures 2.25 ins from beginning.

4. Work k1, p1 ribbing for 5 rounds.

5. Bind off, but not so tightly that the thing won’t stretch over your foot.

I’ll likely be trying another pair or two, possibly decreasing yet another needle size and possibly doing just the k3 p1 ribbing to see how it goes. I want these suckers to be nice and clingy.

 

The socklets and I are spending the afternoon on campus and then heading off to represent with the Yarn Harlot at the Canadian Launch of her book. It’s gonna be super, I am sure, and my parents and several friends are coming along. Can’t wait to see all the crowds that show up.

May your knitting not be far from you today…

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Filed under finished object: accessories, free pattern

"Darkness is cheap, and Scrooge liked it."

Over at Knit the Classics, knitters read a different ‘classic’ novel each month, and are challenged to come up with a knitting project that matches the novel in some way. December’s novel was, appropriately, A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. I decided to knit this cap, for reasons I shall explain further below (along with the pattern for the cap). Time will tell if it’s at all clever or just plain dull ;)

(Bob Cratchit’s stocking night cap – or is it Scrooge’s?
Briggs & Little sport-weight 1-ply)

By the end of the first chapter of A Christmas Carol, Scrooge makes his way back to his large but cold and dark house. Despite the fact that he is extremely well off, he doesn’t even bother to light all the gaslamps in his home because light costs money – “Darkness is cheap, and Scrooge liked it.” He dresses in simple bedtime attire and eats a bowl of gruel before retiring – “Thus secured against surprise, he took off his cravat; put on his dressing-gown and slippers, and his nightcap; and sat down before the fire to take his gruel.”

We aren’t given an impression at this point of what the home life of his clerk, Mr. Cratchit, must be like, but given the miserly wages that we are led to understand Mr. Scrooge pays him, we can assume it is quite meagre. By the time we see the Cratchits on Christmas Day, we are shown that their merry feast is gratefully received but still quite sparse – the goose isn’t very fat, and Mrs. Cratchit frets over the pudding because if it doesn’t work out there is nothing else to serve instead.

It occurred to me, reading these passages, that Scrooge and Cratchit’s day-to-day home lives are actually quite similar on a material level – the only difference is that Scrooge keeps himself in a simple and modest lifestyle because of his miserly inclinations, but Cratchit is forced to do so by necessity. I began thinking of the kinds of basic, modest garments they might both wear – knee socks came to mind, particularly with the cold winter – and eventually settled on the idea of the night cap. We know Scrooge wears one and I can only guess that Cratchit does, too.


In my stash I have had a couple of skeins of very simple, very utiliatrian sport weight wool from Briggs & Little, just waiting for a project to complete it. I thought it matched the basic materiality of A Christmas Carol‘s humble beginnings quite well, and so the nightcap pattern seemed to fit. Here is the pattern, for those of you who would like to try it!

Scrooge/Cratchit Night Cap

Size:
One
22 ins circumference, 19 ins (approx.) from brim to top
(to modify the size, simply add or subtract from the given # of CO sts by a multiple of 4)

Materials:
1 skein Briggs & Little sport weight 1 ply (or other sport weight yarn to substitute, approx. 420 yds), dark grey

1 40 cm 3.5 mm circular needle
1 40 cm 3.25 mm circular needle (or DPNs)
1 set 3.5mm DPNs
tapestry needle
stitch markers

Gauge:
6 sts/8 rows per inch on 3.5mm needles, or needle size required to match gauge

Pattern:

Available here.

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Filed under free pattern, knit the classics