Happy St. Patrick’s Day – Free Clover Pattern!

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Otto is getting into the spirit~


If you have come by the shop in the last week or so, you might have caught me madly knitting away at some tiny green project – clovers! After searching through the ravelverse for a free knit clover pattern, I couldn’t find one that didn’t involve breaking the yarn after every leaf to seam them all together afterwards. What to do? This pattern is the result, and I’m more than happy to share it with you all for free so you can knit some luck into your life! 

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Requirements

Yarn – Green yarn! Great for leftovers. Yardage will depend on yarn weight and the number of leaves you do, but it doesn’t take much in any case.

Needles – Gauge is not incredibly important, I would recommend going with the size recommended on the yarn label or a bit smaller. DPN’s are incredibly handy for this small work.

Terms

K – knit

kfb – knit into the front and back of the next stitch – this increases one stitch into two

W&T – bring the yarn to the front of the work, slip the next stitch from left needle to right unworked, bring the yarn to the back of the work, return the stitch back to the left needle, return the yarn to the front of the work, and turn

sl1 – slip the next stitch to the right needle unworked

k2tog – knit the next two stitches together as if they are one stitch – this decreases two stitches into one

kwtog – the next stitch is a wrapped stitch – using the right needle, pick up the ‘wrap’ and put it onto the left needle, now knit that wrap together with the stitch it was wrapped around

Pattern Instructions

First Leaf

Cast on 7 stitches

Row 1: K1, kfb, K3, W&T (8 stitches)

Row 2: K to end of row

Row 3: K1, kfb, k2, w&t (9 stitches)

Row 4: K to end of row

Row 5: K1, k2tog, K2, knit w tog w st, K1, turn

Row 6: sl1, K to end

Row 7: K1, k2tog, past K1 over the k2tog, K1, pass k2tog over said K1, K2, kwtog, K1 (5 stitches)

Row 8: K4, kfb, cast on 1 (7 stitches)

Row 9: K1, kfb, K3, w&t (8 stitches)

Row 10: K to end

Row 11: K1, kfb, K2, w&t (9 stitches)

Row 12: K to end

Row 13: K1, k2tog, K2, kwtog, K1, turn (8 stitches)

Row 14: sl1, K to end

Row 15: K1, k2tog, pass knit over k2tog, K1, pass k2tog over K1, cont bind off til reach wrapped st (2nd last st from end), kwtog, bind off so that there is only the one final st remaining

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Additional Leaves

With 1 stitch still left on needle from prev leaf, cast on 6 stitches (7 stitches)

Repeat rows 1 – 15 of leaf pattern

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Stem

When you have your desired number of leaves, it is time to join them, either by seaming them together or by picking up one stitch from the bottom of each leaf and knitting them together with the one st left on your needle.

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To then knit a stem, pick up 3-5 stitches (depending on number of leaves) from the center and knit an i-cord to desired length.

i-cords are easiest if you use double pointed needles;

K all, move dpn from right hand back to left, K all. In this way you are drawing the yarn across the back of the K4 which will close the circle. Repeat until it is as long as you like.

With straight needles;

K all, slip these four stitches back onto the left needle, K all.

For the final row, k2tog, k2tog, pass first k2tog over second, break yarn and pull through final stitch – finished! Weave in your ends.

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Alterations

  • if you would like, you could bind off all stitches, and repeat the first leaf however many times and then seam them together later.
  • you might slip the first stitch of the outside leaf edge (the first stitch of all odd-numbered rows) in order to create a prettier edge
  • you might add detail to the leaf by using leftovers or the weaving in the tail to create the ‘veins’
  • if the leaves aren’t closing together as you’d like, you might use the tail to weave through and draw them together
  • add a safety pin to turn it into a cute, seasonal addition to your coat!

Please let me know if you find any errors or if anything is unclear. Have a fantastic St. Patrick’s Day!

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Shawlidarity!

If you had told me five years ago that I would love shawls, I would’ve called you crazy. And I see it all the time, people who hear the word ‘shawl’ and immediately react with something along the lines of “What is this, an Emily Dickinson poem?”

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It might be!

Hear me out, shawl haters! Or perhaps knitting novices who, like the Chloë of yore, thought shawls a weird quirk on the knitting pattern spectrum.

Shawls are the perfect blank canvas. Any yarn weight, any season, any design taste. What are you feeling like? You can knit circles, or wide rectangles, or trianglesbead it, cable it, go full lace or colourwork or short rows! Unlike sweaters, you aren’t worrying about exact fit and measuring and trying on. There are many shawl patterns out there built around using whatever yardage you have, or using up lots of leftovers, but you aren’t dedicating yourself to the mountain of work that is a blanket. Unless you want to. I have definitely knit a shawl-blanket and would recommend it to anyone who needs a dose of serious coziness.

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And I’m still alive to tell the tale!

Once it’s finished, shawls are super portable. You get a useful layer that adds some personal style to whatever you’re wearing, year-round. A lace or fingering weight shawl in the summer over a tank top to keep the evening breezes at bay, a worsted shawl in the winter to wrap around your neck and shoulders. The wide variety of weights, and your choice of fibre, means you can customize your project to where/when you want to wear it. Some lacey bamboo, some squishy textured wool – they are just so wearable! You might be the type to wear them wrapped up close to your neck, or draped wide over your shoulders. There’s no wrong way. Or, perhaps, the only wrong way is to be caught without a shawl. *gasp*

At this point you will not be surprised to discover that I have two shawls in progress.

biasedtransitions

Biased Transitions by Jenny Faifel began out of a very sincere need to break open some of the stunning Kauni 8/2 Effektgarn we recently started carrying – it uses up just about all of the 300g kit that the yarn comes in, and the gradual colour changes make a very simple knit a treat for your eyes!

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At the same time, with all of this talk about ‘coldest February ever’ I couldn’t resist casting on Vouvray by Melanie Berg (from her 5 Shawls collection released last month) in Illimani’s Baby Llama, to add some extra gorgeous drapey warmth into my cold, wintery, Simcoe County life.

If you have been feeling like a shawl – or if I have managed to infect you with the shawl bug – we do have a Shawl KAL (knit-along/shawlalong?) coming up, and along side it the amazingly wonderful Cyndy will be running a Shawl CAL (crochet-along). It’s a great chance to try a new technique you feel you might need a bit of help with, or get your fill of shawl talk as you add to an already voluminous collection. I can obviously talk about it for days! The KAL/CAL is built around each knitter/crocheter picking a shawl pattern of their choice, generally one you would be afraid to try alone, and working through them together with yours truly on hand for any tips and tricks. This means you can use the shawlalong to pick up any technique you want to try or need practice with, and choose a pattern that caters to that technique, your stash, and all of your emotional shawl/wrap/cowl needs!

Not sure if there’s a shawl pattern out there for you? Here are some of my recommendations if you’re on a hunt for a new shawl pattern;

coloraffection

The Color Affection by Veera Valimaki is, safe to say, the Ravelry favourite. I don’t think you could travel to any yarn shop on earth and not have someone ask “Excuse me – is that a Color Affection?” It’s garter stitch, so it knits up fast for a fingering weight shawl, and is a great chance for a beginner/intermediate knitter to play with striping, increasing, and eventually, short rows. For the crocheters out there, Julie Blagojevich has come up with a crochet version!

The next two are going to be designer themed, as picking just one of their patterns is difficult.

rockisland

Jared Flood has 19 shawl patterns, including Rock Island which I knit two (?) years ago and have spotted in the wilds of our store several times. It’s lace, yes, but the repeats are pretty straightforward, so would be lace-novice-appropriate. Flood’s Guernsey Wrap is a textured, rectangular wrap for those of you who are not so lace-minded (as well as future Chloë who I think is going to be knitting this up in fall 2015 – spoilers!).

dottedrays

Stephen West is another prolific designer – with a whopping 52 shawl patterns I think his are the funky cousins to Flood’s more elegant looks. West’s patterns seem to have an endless array of options to experiment with colour. Glacier Sweep is one I have been getting a lot of use out of this winter (and another great one for trying out short rows!), while the Dotted Rays (see above, in bright green) has been on my mind. Maybe just to knit and display on my wall. Seriously – it looks so cool!

We can’t leave crocheters out ~!

maiashawl feteduprintemps desperatelyseekingshallowsccrescent

With projects like the Maia Shawl, Fete du Printemps, and ‘Desperately Seeking‘ respectively, you’ll get your crochet fix in no time.

 I think I’m particularly partial to Swan Lake – I might need to get Cyndy to teach me how to crochet just so I can make it.

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Although we won’t tell her that, she might use it against me!

There is still plenty of time to sign up for our Shawlalong if you’re interested. I hope you’ve enjoyed all this shawl-inspiration, and you’re keeping warm! Spring is just around the corner, or so I have heard, and with it – lace shawl season.

Chloë