Saturday, March 23, 2013

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Creepy Crawly

In honor of spider week in kindergarten, a knit spider pattern:

Size: One size

Finished Measurements: approx. 8 inches long

  • black worsted weight yarn (I used Cascade 220 so that I could try felting one.)
  • small amount of red yarn (optional)
  • 1 set of 5 size 5 DPNs (or size needed to get gauge)
  • 1 set of 5 size 3-4 DPNs (or smaller size than needed to get gauge) (optional)
  • yarn needle
  • polyester batting
22 st/4in. (Knit at a gauge tighter than usual for worsted weight yarn so that the white batting doesn't show through the black fabric.)

Opisthosoma (Body)

CO 12 stitches onto the larger DPNs, placing marker after the sixth stitch, and join for knitting in the round.
Knit 2 rounds.
Increase round: K1, M1, knit to 1 stitch before the marker, M1, knit to the last stitch in the round, M1, K1.
Repeat increase round two more times (24 st)

K1 round even.
Repeat increase round.
Repeat these two rounds until 60 stitches on needles.

Knit 5 rounds even.

Decrease round: K1, SSK, knit to last 3 stitches before marker, K2tog, k1, slip marker, k1, SSK, knit to last 3 stitches in round, K2tog.
Knit 1 round even.
Repeat these two rounds until 40 stitches remain.
Repeat decrease round every round until 28 stitches remain.
Knit 1 round even.

Using yarn needle, use the CO tail to seam the opening shut.


Repeat the increase round three times (40 stitches).
Knit to the marker, arranging the stitches with 20 on the first needle, and 10 each on the other two needles.

With the live stitches still on the needles, turn the spider inside out. (If you purl more loosely than you knit, start knitting onto the smaller needles at this point. Also note that it's easier to make "ladders" between the DPNs while purling, so be sure to pull the stitches tight at the beginning of the needle.) Stuff the abdomen.

Leg round: **Purl first four stitches onto free needle.
Use the fifth DPN to knit 4 inches of 4-stitch I-cord, then break yarn and pull through stitches using a yarn needle.
Rejoin yarn by picking up 4 stitches at the inside base of the leg you just made.
Purl to last 4 stitches on the needle.
With free needle, knit 4 inches of 4 stitch I-cord, break the yarn, and pull through the stitches with yarn needle.
Pick up 4 stitches at the base of the second leg.
Purl to the end of the round.

Purl two rounds even.
Weave in the ends before continuing, being sure to close any gaps.**

Repeat from ** to ** once more for a total of four legs and three purl rounds after the legs.

Do another leg round for a total of six legs.

Purl decrease round: P1, p2tog, purl to the last three stitches before the end of the needle, p2tog, p1, purl to the end of the round.
Purl one round even.
Do another purl decrease round.

Do another leg round.

Continue purl decrease rounds until 20 stitches remain.

Stuff the cephalothorax.
Graft the remaining stitches using Kitchener Stitch. Weave in end.

Optional: Use duplicate stitch and red yarn to make eyes.

Afterthought: I need a better picture of the spider. The one I posted looks almost like it's intarsia on a white sweater.


In case anyone wonders:

A Basic Top-Down Shrug with Tie Front

Size: Women's M, worn with zero to negative ease
In the words of the Yarn Harlot, "if you are the least bit clever," you could make a different size by dividing for the sleeves a bit sooner for a smaller shrug or continuing to increase for a larger one. However, a larger shrug would definitely require another hank of yarn.

Finished Measurements
Chest: 36 in. Length: 13.5" at center back

Yarn: Knit Picks Stroll Tonal [75% merino wool, 25% nylon; 462yds per 100g hank]; color: Blue Yonder, 1 hank
Needles: 1 size US7 32" circular needle, 1 size US4 32" circular needle, 1 set size US4 DPNs (optional) (I used Knit Picks interchangeable needles--love 'em.)

waste yarn

23.5 st/4 inches in St st using size 7 needles
(But let's be honest. I only figured that out AFTER I measured. Try it on as you go.)

With size 7 needles CO 3st, PM, 5st, PM, 40st, PM, 5st, PM, 3st.
Row 1: K1, M1, [K to 1 st before marker, M1, K1, SM, K1, M1] across, K to last st, M1, K1.
Row 2: P
Row 3: [K to 1 st before marker, M1, K1, SM, K1, M1] across, k to end.
Row 4: P

Repeat these four rows until there are 96st between two center makers (back of the shrug), or until it fits around your arms and chest, then repeat rows 1-2 again.

Divide for sleeves
Knit to first marker and remove it, place sleeve stitches onto waste yarn, remove second marker, CO 5 sts, knit across back stitches, remove marker, place sleeve stitches on waste yarn, remove last marker, CO 5 sts and k to end.
P1 row.

Knit Sleeves
Transfer held sts from waste yarn to smaller needle (or DPNs). Pick up 5-7 stitches at under arm, knit all sleeve sts, and join to work in the round (using Magic Loop if circular needle), and work 4 rounds in garter stitch, starting with a purl round. BO all stitches purlwise. Repeat for second sleeve. (Did I really need to specify that?)

(The sleeves can be worked after the lower body is done, but my shrug required a whole hank, and if the sleeves are finished, you can keep knitting the body until you run out of yarn, if necessary.)

****Update:  For those who would like longer sleeves, after putting the sleeve stitches onto the DPNs or circular needle, instead of doing the rounds of garter stitch, place a marker at the center of the underarm and continue even in St st for about 3-4 inches (if you don't have fat arms, you can probably start the decreases immediately--I wouldn't know about that) then decrease two stitches every seven rounds as follows:

Round 1: K1, SSK, knit to last 3 stitches, k2tog, k1
Rounds 2-7: K all sts.

Continue decreases until sleeve is as narrow as you'd like it, then continue even until sleeve is as long as you'd like it.  (I made a 3/4 sleeve sweater with 11 decreases, ending the sleeve just after the last decrease.)

Lower Body
Row 1: K1, M1, k to last st, M1, K1
Row 2: P
Row 3: K
Row 4: P
Repeat these four rows until there are 200 sts, or until shrug almost reaches bra band and meets in front (or nearly so).

Cast on Ties
CO 35 sts, work across in St st, CO 35 sts.
Next RS row: K1, M1, k to last st, M1, K1.
P1 row.
Continue these two rows for 2 in.
Switch to smaller needle and work in garter st for 1 in.
BO all sts knitwise on a WS row.

If you have the yarn, you could single crochet or make I-cord around the neckline, but I kinda like the unfinished look. Oh, and I was out of yarn.

Weave in ends.

If you find any errors, please let me know by comment here or on Ravelry. Thanks!