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Welcome to my blog. You can read about my adventures in different types of needlework, and I also offer some free
cross stitch patterns. Please, come back often. :)

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PLEASE, NOTE: The designs on this site are copyrighted to Agnes Palko. They are for your personal use only. They may not be distributed or reproduced without permission.
If you wish to use my patterns to stitch for charity, please, let me know.

25/12/2016

A sweater - my first knitting pattern


I managed to finish my daughter's sweater (or jumper? pullover? - I never know which word is the best) on Christmas Eve. It would have been perfect, only we are 2600 kms apart, so I was very late with it. The way post offices work nowadays, I should have finished it about a month earlier for her to get it for Christmas. So now this will become a New Year's present instead...

The story is, I made this sweater for myself last year. I had this idea in my head: I thought I would knit it and at the same time write down what I do and thus make my first ever knitting pattern. No the first I ever made, I do knit almost all the time following my head instead of patterns. Not always with a big success though. Only I never wrote down anything.
Well, my sweater was ready and full of mistakes. The front and back were different length. I tried to fix it by folding up the edge - it became even worse.

I wanted it to be VERY easy to knit, to have one of those mindless crafting projects I need sometimes, when you don't need to count, don't need to pay any attention, you can just move your hands automatically... I also wanted it to be VERY soft and cosy. So I decided to use a thin sock yarn, Drops Fabel, big knitting needles, number 10, and garter stitch. I also wanted the stripes to go vertically instead of horizontally, so I knitted from side to side.

Well, it was a great project for mindless crafting, that bit was true. It became soft and cosy, too. But the thin yarn and very loose knitting meant that it gets caught on everything, I have already pulled out long pieces of yarn that are impossible to pull back. Luckily, they don't show too much.

All in all, my sweater was not a great success. I don't really wear it outside the home, because I feel it is not nice looking enough. For home, however, it is super, warm without being too heavy. When my daughter visited me last year, she borrowed it and was wearing it all the time, she loved it so much. So I thought I will give it another try, and see what happens. With university, work, moving etc it took me a whole year to finish, but now it is ready. I made a few mistakes on this one, too, but not too terrible ones :D I went down 2 needle sizes, so while it is still very loose, not as loose as the first one, let's hope it will not snag so much.



So here I give you: Eszter's sweater - a loosely fitting size S. Would probably fit an M size, too, but you might need to lengthen the sleeves a bit.

Yarn: Drops Fabel. Or any yarn that calls for 3 mm needles (US 2,5/D-3). This one is 75% wool and 25 % polyamide, a sock yarn, but I am sure 100% wool would work just as well.

Needles: 6 mm (circular) needles (US 10).

Gauge: 16 stitches x 27 rows in garter stitch = 10 cm x 10 cm

Abbreviations:

k2tog: knit 2 together
M1: make one: knit in the front leg of the stitch, don't lift it off the left needle, knit in the back leg of the same stitch, lift it off. You made one extra stitch.


Back: cast on 120 stitches (With this many it became a bit too long, she can wear it almost as a mini-dress with leggings. At least I think so, we will see when she gets it and tries it on. If you want to make it shorter, try 100 stitches.)

rows 1-54: knit garter stitch (knit both sides)

row 55: k2tog, k2tog, knit to the end of the row (118)
row 56: knit
row 57: k2tog, k2tog, knit knit to the end of the row (116)

rows 58-104: knit

row 105: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (118)
row 106: knit
row 107: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (120)

row 108-162 knit garter stitch

Cast off loosely. It is important that the cast off edge becomes the same length as the cast on edge. I had to restart a few times until I found the right tension which was much looser than my usual cast off.


The front is almost the same, only we do more decrease and increase for the neck.

Front: cast on 120 stitches (With this many it became a bit too long, she can wear it almost as a mini-dress with leggings. At least I think so, we will see when she gets it and tries it on. If you want to make it shorter, try 100 stitches.)

rows 1-54: knit garter stitch (knit both sides)

row 55: k2tog, k2tog, knit to the end of the row (118)
row 56: knit
row 57: k2tog, k2tog, knit knit to the end of the row (116)
row 58: knit
row 59: k2tog, k2tog, knit knit to the end of the row (114)
row 60: knit
row 61: row 57: k2tog, k2tog, knit knit to the end of the row (112)


rows 62-100: knit

row 101: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (114)
row 102: knit
row 103: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (116)
row 104: knit
row 105: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (118)
row 106: knit
row 107: M1, M1, knit to the end of the row (120)

row 108-162 knit garter stitch

Cast off loosely.

Sew together front and back shoulders. Measure and mark 30 cm from the shoulders down the sides. This will be the armhole. Sew together from this mark down to the bottom.


Sleeves:

Pick up stitches all around the armhole. Mark the beginning of the row at the side seam. Knit on circular needles like this:

For me it was 84 stitches.


Round 1: knit
Round 2: purl

Repeat these two rows 7 times (=14 rounds)

Then we begin to decrease:

Round 1: knit
Round 2: purl
Round 3: k2tog, knit to the last 2 stitches, k2tog
Round 4 purl


Repeat these four rows 16 times (= 64 rows) (52)

(At about 60 stitches I switched to double pointed needles, I found it easier to work with them.)

Then:

Round 1: knit
Round 2: purl

Repeat 6 times (=12 rows)

(This length should be enough for my daughter, considering that the sweater has drop shoulders. In case you need longer sleeves, count how many more rows you need and divide the decreases accordingly, perhaps every fifth round).

The cuff was made with a *knit 2, purl 2* rib, in 24 rounds. Then I folded the live stitches back to the beginning of the rib, on the wrong side, and dropping them one by one from the needle, sewed them down. I found this is much better than any cast off when one needs a flexible opening.

Then, of course, repeat the whole thing for the other sleeve.

Neck:

Pick up stitches around the neckline, knit a *knit 2, purl 2* rib in 24 rounds and finish off the same way as the sleeves.

Weave in all yarn ends. It is possible to block the front and the back before sewing them together, but the sleeves need to be blocked afterwards anyway, so I am just blocking the whole thing now when it is ready.

Here is a picture of it lying on my yoga mat, blocking the body. I will have to block the sleeves next because I don't have a big enough mat.






This is my first ever knitting pattern, please let me know if you don't understand something or if you find a mistake.
Happy knitting!





19/12/2016

Christmas ornament



Hello, dear Friends,


Christmas is upon us in just a few days. I am sure most of us are busy preparing for the festivities. But if you need a bit of me-time, a bit of relaxing, or perhaps a last-minute gift, here is a small Christmas pattern that you can stitch. It works well for an ornament, a card, or a decoration on something like a doily, a bag etc.

I made two versions: one with a golden garland wrapped around the greenery and one without, if someone prefers simple.

The pattern says DMC 3854 for the "gold", but I would actually stitch it in metallic gold instead.
I think this would look lovely if the French knots were replaced by beads, too.










Happy stitching and happy preparation-time. Don't overdo it though! :D

12/12/2016

Colouring pattern in cross stitch

Hi, everyone.

I was looking at some colouring books that are so much a fashion nowadays. I haven't really tried any of he adult colouring yet but have bought some and have some lovely pencils, too. Perhaps in the holidays.

By the way, I find this word "adult" a bit funny, don't you? When I first heard it I thought it was something else... :D

All these colouring books gave me an idea. And so here come the first (at least as far as I know - have you seen anything like this before?) colouring pattern in cross stitch.
I made the outlines in black, and you, dear friends, need to fill them in with colours. I think it might be a perfect way to use variegated thread, too.

I hope you give this a try and report back to me how it went.

I made one coloured-in version too, just to see how it looks in many bright colours. If you want to use that version instead, you can download that as well.