FO – Frosty the Snowman Christmas Stocking

I have finished and mailed off another family heirloom for a customer and friend. This stocking is the second one that I’ve knitted for her. The coolest part of the whole story is that her mother, now deceased, designed these stocking patterns for a very well-known stocking pattern company. Her mom had knitted stockings for the whole family and they’re trying to keep the tradition alive by knitting her mother’s patterns for new additions to the family. Cool, right?

The Frosty the Snowman stocking is relatively simple Intarsia knitting. A top hat wearing snowman who is holding a striped candy cane. My friend asked that I use angora as the pattern requires. With little bits of green for his scarf and mittens, black for buttons and hat, the most clever and my favorite piece of the design is the way she designed the candy cane – with white stripes on the red fabric and red stripes on the white. Sooo clever and it works so well!

What I don’t like about the Intarsia technique is weaving in the ends. The front looks so clean and clear but the back is bedlam! Each color across a row requires a different length of yarn and that means there are lots of bits of yarn dangling from the back. Every one needs to be woven into the reverse side of the stocking without being visible on the front. I also add the name in duplicate stitch on the front and then seam up the back and add a braided length of yarn to hang the stocking. Lots of work!

I was very happy with this stocking and I hope she is, too. I wish that their family has a very merry Christmas this year and every one after.

Gone knitting!

How to Weave in Ends as you Knit!

I just completed a pair of wonderful striped Christmas stockings. They are beautiful – but they had a bazillion ends that needed to be woven in at the end of the project

At least a bazillion loose ends!

… unless you knew this trick!

You can weave in the ends as you go and avoid the drudgery at the end! (It’s a bit like avoiding seaming by learning to knit in the round!)

So, “how do you do it?” you ask? Here’s how.

When you’ve knit to the place where you need to change colors or yarns, you can make your first stitch with the new yarn. And what you’re going to do is ” carry” the yarn to be woven in (the old color of yarn) across the next row of stitches by alternatively bringing the old yarn tail up and over your needle and knitting a stitch and then bringing the tail down and knitting a stitch.

Here are a couple of illustrations:

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On right is first green stitch. Making stitch #2

Making the second stitch of the first green row of stitches by inserting right hand needle into the second stitch knit-wise.

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Carry the yarn tail

Bring the yarn tail to be woven in (the black yarn) across the stitches. First bring the tail up over the needle and then wrap your new yarn around the stitch to be made.

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With tail over the needle, wrap your new yarn around the needle to make the next stitch (green)

Bring the tail back down and then finish your stitch.

IMG_0820Make the next stitch “normally” with the tail being held down so that your yarn is carried over the tail yarn (black) when you make the stitch.

Alternate bringing the tail yarn over the needles and holding the tail yarn down while you make the next four or five stitches. That should be enough to hold the tail. You can finish your row and cut the tails close to your stitches.

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The tail is woven in and doesn’t even show – unfortunately, I chose black yarn so you really can’t see the tail!

I hope this helps!

Gone knitting!