knitted sample of Idyll lace

Idyll: a lace knitting stitch pattern

The first word I drew from the words suggested on Patreon this month is Idyll, suggested by Kate, a Patreon supporter. I think we could all use an idyll right about now. Peace, and rest, and beautiful surroundings. Or at least, that’s how I’ve always thought of idylls.

I decided to look it up, and it turns out that an idyll is a poem or song that describes a peaceful episode in the countryside, often idealized and unrealistic. A romanticized view of country life, in other words. Ah, well. A peaceful episode in the country still sounds comforting right now.

To return to knitting, I can’t tell if I’m just currently obsessed with the bunny ears yarnover, but I think it’s going to be useful in a fair number of code lace layouts that I would otherwise have decided were impossible. I’m using it enough that I’ve started to abbreviate it instead of writing it out in the instructions. Also, this design introduces the alternate form that’s based on bunny ears back, because of the way the decrease lines need to go. Both forms are there, so watch the chart symbols and abbreviations carefully!

Each month, my Patreon backers have the chance to suggest words for me to encode as knitting stitches. I make three of these into knitting stitches each month: the second and third (posted on the first day of the next month) are drawn from the collection of new words; the first is drawn from the collection of unused words. A random number generator helps me choose these, and then I get to work, first turning the letters into numbers, then charting the numbers onto grids in various ways. Finally, when I make the chart into lace, I turn the marked squares into yarnovers and work out where to place the corresponding decreases. (I usually make lace; occasionally I make cables instead.) I also make a chart for any craft that uses a square grid for designing; this goes in a separate post.

The stitch patterns are not meant in any way to look like the original words; the words are the seeds of my creativity.

knitted sample of Idyll lace
Click chart to enlarge


  • This is a stitch pattern such as might be found in a stitch dictionary. It is not a pattern for a finished object. You will need to add selvedges or some other form of knitted stitches to either side.
  • The repeats in the charts and the text aren’t in the same places. (The double YOs complicate writing the repeats logically in the text.)
  • Idyll is a multiple of 12 + 1 stitches and 12 rows.
  • I’ve made a stitch map for it.
  • Designers, please feel free to use this in your patterns. I’d like credit but won’t be offended if people don’t give it.
  • My blog posts and free stitch patterns are supported by subscriptions on Patreon or donations to my Paypal tip jar in the sidebar. If you appreciate my work, please consider helping out. Thanks!


  • BEBYO: bunny ears back yo: a variant of the bunny ears yo, but using the bunny ears back decrease as its basis. It turns three stitches into three stitches. Slip one knitwise, knit 1 without pulling the old stitch off the needle, pass slipped stitch over the new stitch; yo, k2tog (one of the stitches is the one that was knit but left on the needle).
  • BEY: bunny ears yarnover:This is a variant on the bunny ears decrease, with a yarnover added in the middle. It turns three stitches into three stitches. Knit 2 together, but only remove the first stitch from the needle; yarn over, then work ssk with the second and third stitches. The middle stitch of the original three has been knit together with each of its neighbors. Blog post about bunny ears yarnover.
  • CDD: centered double decrease: slip the next 2 stitches as if to knit 2 together, knit the next stitch, then pass the 2 slipped stitches over the third.
  • DSD: double slip decrease: ssk, slip the resulting stitch back to the left needle, pass the next stitch over, then slip the result. Substitute knit 3 together if desired; they are similar but don’t look quite the same. (Right-leaning double decrease.)
  • k: knit.
  • k2tog: knit 2 stitches together as if they were 1. (Right-leaning decrease)
  • p: purl.
  • p1b: purl one below. For this stitch pattern, it’s not quite the same as a regular p1b, because it’s actually purling the bar below a yarnover, but the action is much the same. From behind, pick up the bar below the yarnover with the right needle and place it on the left needle next to the yarnover; purl both those strands at the same time. This prevents the bar from making a horizontal line in front of the yarnover.
  • sk2p: slip 1, k2tog, pass slipped stitch over. (Left-leaning double decrease.)
  • ssk: slip each of the next 2 stitches as if to knit, then knit them together through the back loop. (Left-leaning decrease)
  • yo: yarnover

Row 1 (RS): k5, *BEY, k9; work from *, BEY, k5.

Row 2 (WS): p6, p1b, *p11, p1b; work from *, p6.

Row 3: k1, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, k1, *k2, (k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, k1) × 2; work from *, k2, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, k1.

Row 4: p2, (k1, p1) in double yo, p3, *p2, (k1, p1) in double yo, p1, (k1, p1) in double yo × 2, p3; work from *, p2, (k1, p1) in double yo, p2.

Row 5: k2tog, yo, k2, yo, ssk, *k1, k2tog, yo, k2, yo, cdd, yo, k2, yo, ssk; work from *, k1, k2tog, yo, k2, yo, ssk.

Row 6: p23, p1b, p1.

Row 7: (yo, ssk) × 2, k2, *k3, k2tog, yo, BEY, yo, ssk, k2; work from *, k3, (k2tog, yo) × 2.

Row 8: p7, *p5, p1b, p6; work from *, p6.

Row 9: k2, yo, k1, yo, sl1, k2tog, psso, *k1, DSD, yo, k1, yo, k3, yo, k1, yo, sl1, k2tog, psso; work from *, k1, DSD, yo, k1, yo, k2.

Row 10: purl.

Row 11: k5, *BEBYO, k9; work from *, BEBYO, k5.

Row 12: p6, p1b, *p11, p1b; work from *, p6.

Row 13: yo, ssk, k4, *k5, BEY, k4; work from *, k5, k2tog, yo.

Row 14: p7, *p5, p1b, p6; work from *, p6.

Row 15: k2, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, *k1, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, k3, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk; work from *, k1, k2tog, yo × 2, ssk, k2.

Row 16: p3, (k1, p1) in double yo, p2, *p1, (k1, p1) in double yo, p5, (k1, p1) in double yo, p2; work from *, p1, (k1, p1) in double yo, p3.

Row 17: k1, k2tog, yo, k2, yo, *cdd, yo, k2, yo, ssk, k1, k2tog, yo, k2, yo; work from *, cdd, yo, k2, yo, ssk, k1.

Row 18: purl.

Row 19: k3, k2tog, yo, *BEY, yo, ssk, k5, k2tog, yo; work from *, BEY, yo, ssk, k3.

Row 20: p6, p1b, *p11, p1b; work from *, p6.

Row 21: k1, DSD, (yo, k1) × 2, *k2, yo, k1, yo, sl1, k2tog, psso, k1, DSD, (yo, k1) × 2; work from *, k2, yo, k1, yo, sl1, k2tog, psso, k1.

Row 22: purl.

Row 23: yo, ssk, k4, *k5, BEBYO, k4; work from *, k5, k2tog, yo.

Row 24: p7, *p5, p1b, p6; work from *, p6.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.