Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Acorn tawashi

The late night TV programming has been intriguing lately: Deadly Women, Snapped, Who the [Bleep] Did I Marry?, Wicked Attraction, and my favorite - Tangled ......I know, I know, strange mix. So what has that got to do with knitting? Well, the kids are in bed, hubby is asleep in front of the computer, my is dog curled next to me so now I can knit and solve crimes at the same time while the rest of the household sleeps.

One of my recent fun projects was a loom knitted version of a needle knitted pattern, Acorn Tawashi by Marte Fagervik from Ravelry. I made mine in the round on the Knifty Knitter Long Loom without the loom clips. I've found that omitting the loom clips and just crossing over to the opposite side of the long loom works great for items such as a tawashi or a potholder and it helps the finished item to lay flat.

My loom knit version is actually a very loose translation of the original version and there are a number of things I would change if I made another one. What I want to do is create a similar acorn, but with different proportions (i.e., shorter body, bigger cap, etc.). Perhaps if I paid more attention to my knitting and less attention to the TV the acorn would have worked out right the first time.

May the bounty of the season fill your heart and home!

Monday, November 07, 2011

Indian Corn Hot Pad

Indian Corn Hot Pad or Potholder
Remember the Indian Corn project from last November, where I used the reverse side of the linen stitch to create the "Indian corn" look. Well, I liked this stitch so much that I decided to design a large (9 inches square) super thick Thanksgiving hot pad or potholder around it this year and I'm really pleased with the results.

The Indian Corn Hot Pad was designed for the 36-peg large gauge round loom, but could easily be adapted to any of the large gauge looms with an even number of pegs. Also, I used double worsted weight (8 ply) 100% cotton yarn by Peaches & Creme in Shaded Brown, which is the equivalent of using two strands of the regular 4 ply cotton yarn. The double worsted weight Peaches & Creme yarn is hard to find, but it is a joy to knit with on the large gauge looms.

Construction of this hot pad is a little different from any I've seen elsewhere. It is made in the round using the 36-peg large gauge round loom, but since the reverse side of the linen stitch was used for this project, I placed markers on pegs 18 & 36 and purled these pegs. When the hot pad was removed from the loom and turned inside out, the purled pegs formed a chained or braided stitch pattern along the sides which helps define and maintain the flat square shape. The tube is flattened and closed along the cast on and bind off edges using any form of grafting technique or slip stitch crochet. This is an easy way to create a super thick hot pad using a variety of stitch patterns that might otherwise be difficult to do a knitting board.

Indian Corn Hot Pad

  • Large gauge round looms with even number of pegs & loom tool
  • Yarn: 100% cotton worsted weight or double worsted weight in variegated shades of brown
  • 2 stitch markers
  • Other supplies: scissors, crochet hook, yarn needle
Gauge: 8 stitches X 16 rows = 4 inches

Finished Size: 9 inches (36-peg loom); 7 inches (30-peg loom) or 6 inches (24-peg loom)

Linen Stitch Sequence (Modified for this this pattern. A detailed explanation of this stitch, which is typically used on an odd number of pegs, can be found in the Indian Corn pattern.)
  • Sequence A: k1, *sl1 wyif, k1; repeat from *
  • Sequence B: sl1 wyif, *k1, sl1 wyif; repeat from *
Close-up: Linen stitch reverse side
Instructions for 36-peg large gauge round loom
  1. Place markers on pegs 18 and 36.
  2. Cast on all pegs in the round using one strand of double weight or two strands of regular worsted weight cotton yarn.
  3. Round 1: Work stitch sequence A on pegs 1-17; p1 on peg-18; work stitch sequence A on pegs 19-35; p1 on peg-36.
  4. Round 2: Work stitch sequence B on pegs 1-17; p1 on peg-18; work stitch sequence B on pegs 19-35; p1 on peg-36.
  5. Repeat Rounds 1 & 2 until hot pad measures 9 inches (approximately 36 rows) from the cast on edge.
  6. Bind off loosely and remove from loom.
  7. Turn knitted tube inside out since the inside will be considered the right side.
  8. Shape into a double flat square by folding along the purled side stitches.
  9. Close the cast on and bind off edges by either stitching using a yarn needle or slip stitch with a crochet hook. 
  10. Optional: Chain or I-cord a hanging loop in one of the top corners of the square.
 Enjoy and use when things are too hot to handle!