Thursday, December 04, 2008
You Say Your Kids Loose Their Gloves? Make Them a Scarf With Pockets!
Here's a picture of the finished scarf with pockets that I made for Natasha. This is a super easy knitting project. If you can knit, own a pair of any size knitting needles and you have leftover yarn, you can make this project. Really, you can!!
It's a choose your own adventure sort of a knitting project. Here are some of the choices you need to make.
What yarn will I use?
I'm a big fan of knitting with two strands of yarn at the same time but then we already knew I was a chronic color combiner.
I start by choosing a base color, in this case deep pink. Usually I use the base color throughout the entire scarf and a secondary color or colors that I use along with the base yarn for the pockets and any striping I might want.
I choose what I want to use for the pockets, in this case a chunky multi color yarn. I divide the pocket yarn into two approximately equal balls. (Personally, I eyeball this but you could measure if you felt the need.) The reason for the equal yarn balls is to make sure I have enough to do both pockets since the scarf is knit as one long piece. (The pockets are made by simply folding over the ends of the scarf.) I like to use really funky yarn for the pockets. I used sparkly blue eyelash yarn on one that I made for one of my daughter's more funky dressing friends.
If you are intending to make yarn changes along the length of the scarf, always divide the yarn so you have approximately equal amounts so your stripes will be more or less even.
Make sure you use the same thickness of yarn or you'll need to do something like I did on this scarf. I accidently used a worsted weight and a sport weight and ended up with the middle section being narrower than the ends. It actually worked out well because I was able to crochet on a pink border around the black which really tied the whole scarf together nicely but I've had other accidents that didn't turn out quite so happy.
Now that you've got some idea about the yarn...
What Needles Will You Use?
Use what you have but think about what kind of yarn you're using too. Do you want a dense thick scarf or a looser knit? There's no right answer, it's totally up to you. I usually knit a row or two decide I don't like it and then rip out and start over a few times. This is not such a big deal because you're not really ripping apart that much, a scarf is just not that wide...or is it? That's up to you because the next thing you need to think about is...
How Many Stitches Should I Cast On?
Again, this is your choice. Natasha's is 22 stiches wide done on size 13 needles with two strands of yarn. I'm working on a more delicate one that is only 16 stitches wide done on size 6 needles using a double strand of yarn but one strand is fingering and the other is worsted weight. It's the blue one here.
How Long Should I Make It?
I like to make mine long enough to wrap around the neck once and have the hand fits into the pockets. Measure the person you're making it for or sit next to them when you knit so you can periodically drape it around them or use yourself as the model. Yarn stretches so you have some leeway here.
How Do I Make The Pockets?
There is one rule here, make sure the pockets fold over on the same side of the scarf! I pin them in place, right side facing in, using a knitting needle. This allows me to make sure they are the same size and make the join invisible. Don't forget to take into account the size of the hands of the scarf's intended recipient.
To join the edges together, I use the technique described for Step 2 in the instructions for this knitting tote bag here. This works well and is sturdy and invisible one you turn the pocket right side out.
So that's pretty much it. What do you think?