Friday, December 15, 2006

Garter Stitch Gift Set

The scarf is a heavily modified version of the Windy City (Keyhole) Scarf from the first SnB. I knit in garter stitch for about 7", changed colors, knit about an inch, then made the split up the center by knitting with 2 balls of yarn at once. (Knit halfway across with one ball of yarn [#1], drop it, knit the rest of the way across with a new ball of yarn [#2], turn your knitting, work halfway across with #2, drop it, then work the rest of the way across with #1. Hopefully that makes sense...) I worked another inch in the contrast color, then switched back to the main color to knit the rest of the scarf. Mine's about 3 and a half feet long, but you can make it shorter. (Knit a shorter segment before you switch to the contrast color.) I cast on 22 stitches on size 11s and it's about 6" wide...but I'm a very tight knitter. You can make a narrower version...just make sure that there are an even number of stitches so that the split is in the center. Or you can make a split-less version.

The fingerless mitts are from Weekend Knitting. They actually use short-row shaping and a 3-needle bindoff -- that's the non-garter stitch part. If you want to do it the quick-n-dirty way...decide on the length that you want the mitts (I usually go from the bottom knuckle of my ring finger just past the bump on my wrist)...check your gauge and decide how many stitches to cast on. If you want them to be 6" long and you get 5 stitches/inch, then you'd cast on 30 stitches. Knit in garter stitch until it wraps around your hand (keep track of the number of rows so that you can do the same number for the other mitt), and then seam the cast-on edge to the bound-off edge, leaving a gap of about 3/4" for a thumb-hole.
I used Karabella Superyak (125 yards/ball), 2 balls of maroon and a little bit of one in grey. You can definitely do this with only 2 balls if you make the scarf narrower and/or shorter; I just wanted to use up all of the maroon. Superyak is expensive but I was lucky enough to find it in the clearance bin at my LYS.

If you're not in a garter-stitch mood, you could do ribs or stockinette or cables...or whatever. You can decorate with beads or crochet or embroidery...but it does become far less unisex at that point. Post a comment if you have questions!


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