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Solving The Knitted Leaf Trim's Directional Dilemma.....

Posted Mar 22 2010 11:27am

You could have knocked me over with a feather when the weather changed so quickly.

It was the first day of spring. And the day began at a beautiful 67 degrees F, with a nice breeze, and the sun was shining brightly. So Blaine took me yarn shopping. I entered a yarn store as he waited in the truck for me---and when I came out of the store, the temperature had dropped about 10 degrees, the sun was covered in snow clouds, and it had begun misting.

And then it turned into a full-fledged snowstorm later on, eventually dropping about 6" of snow on us. (The picture below is the preliminary event---it got worse later on.)

So I did as I usually do when it snows and worked on my current project---The Little Red Riding Hoodie. Here's a mock-up of a sleeve, a "test sleeve" if you will. (This dang yarn photographs in bright neon, which it's not in real life. It's just a very red red.)

Next, I finished my work on re-writing a knitted leaf edging so that you can knit it facing either direction that you wish. I want leaf strands in both directions for use on the Little Red Riding Hoodie's buttonband area--- and up and over the hood.

I had the knitted leaf edging in my files, handwritten from whichever book I got it from. I've seen it in several knitting stitch books---I think I got it from a Nicky Epstein book or a Barbara Walker book. (LATE NOTE: I got the original pattern out of the Nicky Epstein Knitted Embellishments book.) I also found a similar 18-row pattern used in the directions for a free baby hat pattern (link below) (and the author references the page in "Barbara Walker's "A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns" page 357, where she stated that the leaf edging pattern was obtained) but I've always used the one in the Nicky Epstein book.

And in that baby hat pattern it uses the term "inc" wherever the term "k 1 f & b" is used in the pattern I found and also in the pattern I re-wrote to have the leaves facing the opposite direction. And I didn't use a provisional cast on---I just did a plain cast on.

(Copyright Lauren Eade, Image Francie Owens)

Anyway, in my picture below, the leaf edging on the right is the pattern I always found in many knitting stitch books and patterns.

But the one on the left is the one I re-wrote to face the opposite direction.

And here's my directions for it--- and it was very tricky. Because in the knitting books' pattern, the edging was an 18-row pattern with the last, 18th, row consisting of binding off 5 stitches as one part of the row.

But that could not be done in the exact same way in my re-write, so I had to add an extra row in order to do the bind-off row properly. And then I had to add an extra row so that the pattern would be on the correct side to repeat itself by starting on row 1. So if you're knitting a garment with both patterns, remember that the one I wrote has 2 extra rows, which really isn't that noticeable.

(And, in the below picture, if the first 2 leafs look scraggly, it's because I was writing as I went, and I was perfecting things, leaf by leaf, until I got it just right....)

So here's my rewrite (and it's the leaf edging on the left in the picture): Cast on 8 sts.

1. (Right Side) K2, yo, k1, yo, K5

2. K3, k 1 f & b, P 6 (Important: When doing the wrap for the "knitting into the front and back" of the stitch, wrap the first wrap as if to knit, and then for the 2nd wrap in the front make SURE you wrap from the bottom up)

3. K3, yo, k1, yo, k2, p1, k4

4. K4, K1 f & b, P8

5. K4, yo, k1, yo, k3, p2, k4

6. K5, K1 f & b, p10

7. K5, yo, k1, yo, k4, p3, k4

8. K6, k1 f & b, p12

9. K1, ssk, k7, k2 tog, p4, k4

10. K7, K1 f & b, P 10

11. K1, ssk, k5, k2 tog, p5, k4

12. K5, p1, k2, k1 f & b, p8

13. K1, ssk, k3, k2 tog, p4, k1, p1, k4

14. K5, p1, k3, k1 f & b, p6

15. K1, ssk, k1, k2 tog, p5, k1, p1, k4

16. k5, p1, k4, k1 f & b, p4

17. K1, sl 1, k2 tog, psso, p6, k1, p1, k4

18. K5, p1, k6, p2

19. P2 tog, BO 5 sts, p1, k1, p1, k4

20. k5, p1, k1, p1.

Repeat these 20 rows for pattern.

Meanwhile, it snowed on and on.....

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