Rhinebeck: a free Fair Isle chart

There’s not much to say about Rhinebeck that hasn’t been said by hundreds of other people already (it’s wonderful! and well-organized, at least from the parking and ticket line and bathroom point of view), so instead I’m going to share a secret code chart for stranded knitting with you. I’ve encoded the letters of “Rhinebeck” as numbers in base six, charted them on a grid, mirrored the grid in two directions, and voilà! The featured picture shows the result in colors I saw at Rhinebeck in the trees and sky. I’ve also included a more basic chart: the coded numbers are marked by the black squares.

Edit: I had a request for colors for a rainy day instead of bright blue skies, and it was easy enough to do:

Rhinebeck take 2I’m also working on some lace, but I didn’t have it ready for today. (I try to post regularly on Mondays – it keeps me energized. Also, regular posting tends to give me ideas for more posts. If I just post randomly, my ideas dry up.) Anyway, it was chilly enough at Rhinebeck that lace seems less practical than stranded knitting.

rhinebeck plain chartI’m always careful with the charts I post for stranded knitting that there’s no more than seven stitches in a row in a single color; this makes better results.

As always, this could be used for cross stitch, needlepoint, or any craft worked on a grid.

Designers, please feel free to use these stitches in your patterns. I’d like credit but won’t be offended if people don’t give it. Thanks! – Naomi

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Book Review: KNITSONIK Stranded Colourwork Sourcebook

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned this book in the same post as Sequence Knitting, then went on to only review the latter. Now it's this book's turn.

KNITSONIK Stranded Colourwork Sourcebook, by Felicity Ford. KNITSONIK, 2014. ISBN: 978-0993041501. Website: knitsonik.com. Ravelry group: KNITSONIK

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The marriage of inlay and k1long

Making a decorative pattern on the surface of your knitting that looks like embroidery but is knit in as you go.

Sometimes I discover that my brain has been thinking up things while I wasn’t looking, as it were. I love the way it does that. (Except when I’m overwhelmed by ideas.) This time, the back of my brain  decided to combine a technique I’ve been playing with in swatches–k1long with inlay‘s ability to add a contrast color in a vertical colorwork design. This isn’t actually inlay, but merely borrows the idea of carrying a contrast color vertically up the wrong side of the knitting when it’s not in use.

I’ve only written instructions that show how to work this from the front, but I hope that it will be evident how to reverse the process from the wrong side. Please let me know if I’m mistaken and I’ll write this up. As it stands, it should be easy enough to work in the round regardless.

The first step is to consider whether the contrast color loop is leaning from bottom left to top right or from bottom right to top left. If the former, I’ve used a k2tog (right leaning) to secure the loop, and if the latter, I’ve used SSK (left leaning).

The instructions below are for the right-leaning version; the left-leaning version doesn’t require the slipped stitch to be worked first (if working in the round, anyway).

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Mosaic knitting: much easier than it looks.

This beautiful new hat pattern from my friend Sarah looks complicated, doesn’t it? It’s called Mighzal, which means spindle in Arabic. She took the concepts of using writing as decoration on spindle whorls and the concept of a Kufic square, which rotates the same word around the four sides of a square to make a complex looking tile, to create a hat pattern which will let the wearer proclaim their love for spindles.

mighzalIt looks really difficult, but is only a step up in difficulty from knitting a hat with two-row stripes. The technique of mosaic knitting, refined by Barbara Walker, lets the knitter not only work with only one color at a time, but count stitches only on every other row because the first row in each stripe defines quite clearly what happens in the second row.

Here, let me show you with a swatch:

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