Hollingshead Christmas Stocking by Lara Neel My friend and fellow knitter, Linsey Hollingshead, brought me a Christmas stocking made by her grandmother. She wanted to continue the tradition of hand-knitted Christmas stockings for each member of her family, starting with her husband of a few months, Steve. So, I counted stitches, and wrote up some instructions for her. She did a great job in knitting it and I’m proud to say that it was her first sock-like object. It’s a pretty traditional top-down sock construction, with a seamed, shaped leg, a standard flap-and-gusset round heel, and a grafted toe. It is a great beginner project because the stitches are all easy to see and you only need to make one at a time - no second sock syndrome. Linsey’s grandma was not fooling around when it came to her Swiss darning, either. She had lovely Christmas ornaments on the stockings for the men, and names, as well. Linsey worked out her designs on knitter’s graph paper and chose the alphabet for the names from a book of embroidered alphabets. She then copied the letters she needed onto knitter’s graph paper, and went from there. It is really lovely. Gauge: 16 stitches to 4”. Final size is about 26” long and 7.5” wide at the top. Two colors of worsted-weight yarn, and a third, if desired, for Swiss Darning. You will also need: waste yarn 3 stitch markers a darning needle dental floss, for safety in grafting Sample: The leg of the stocking is knit flat, but the foot is knit in the round. So, you should have whatever needles you like best for both. Needle Size: (Linsey used size 8 needles with worsted-weight yarn) Yarn Color 1 (just a very small amount of this one): Yarn Color 2: Cast on 64 stitches in color 1. Knit every stitch for 7 rows. On the next row, knit into the front and back of the first and the last stitch (66 stitches total). Change to color 2. Straight Section Row 1: Knit all stitches. Row 2: Knit 1, purl to one stitch from the end, knit the last stitch. Repeat these two rows 13 times. Decrease Section Work 7 rows in stockinette stitch, keeping the first and last stitches in knit on every row. Then work a decrease row: Knit 1, p2t, purl to three stitches from the end, p2t, knit 1. Repeat these 8 rows 6 times. (54 stitches) Straight Section Row 1: Knit all stitches. Row 2: Knit 1, purl to one stitch from the end, knit the last stitch. Repeat these two rows 4 times. Break yarn. Divide for Heel Flap Slip the first 13 stitches in the row onto a length of waste yarn, slip the next 28 stitches onto another length of waste yarn, join on the yarn and knit the last 13 stitches. Do not turn the work yet. Slide the first 13 stitches you placed on waste yarn onto your free needle, so that the next stitch you will knit would have been the first stitch in an ordinary row. In other words, pick up those 13 stitches with the point facing as if you had just purled a row. Knit those 13 stitches. You now have 26 stitches on the needles and 28 stitches on waste yarn. Until the heel is complete, simply ignore the stitches that are on the waste yarn. Make Heel Flap Row 1: Slip 1 stitch, purl to end. Row 2: Slip 1 stitch, knit to end. Repeat these two rows 8 times. Work Row 1 once more. Turn Heel Knit 15, ssk. Turn, slip 1, p5, p2t. Turn, slip 1, k6, ssk. Turn, slip 1, p7, p2t. Turn, slip 1, k8, ssk. Turn, slip 1, p9, p2t. Turn, slip 1, k10, ssk. Turn, slip 1, p11, p2t. Turn, slip 1, k12, ssk. Turn, slip 1, p13, p2t. Turn, slip 1 and knit back across the remaining 15 heel stitches. Pick up and knit 8 stitches along the left side of the heel flap (you will probably have to fudge a stitch or two). Place a marker (this is the first marker). Remove the waste yarn and knit the next 28 stitches. Place a marker (this is the second marker). Pick up and knit 8 stitches along the right side of the heel flap. When you pick up the last stitch, slip it back onto the left-hand needle and knit it together with the first stitch in the round. You now have a total of 58 stitches and are ready to work in the round. Place a marker in the center of the heel stitches, 7 stitches away from where you just knit 2 together, to mark the beginning of the round. Gusset Decreases Round 1: Knit to 2 stitches before the first marker, k2t, knit to the second marker, slip it, ssk, knit to the end of the round. Round 1: Knit to three stitches away from marker, k2t, knit 2, ssk. Repeat twice, knit to end of round. Round 2: Knit all stitches. Repeat these two rounds until you have 12 stitches total. Graft 6 stitches to 6 stitches, folding it in the way you think looks best. If you have never grafted before, it helps to have an experienced knitter helping you. Barring that, at least put your live stitches onto dental floss instead of needles when you are getting ready to darn. This allows the stitches to turn the way they like, and you won’t have to fight the weight of the needle as you go. Round 2: Knit all stitches. Repeat these two rounds three times. (52 stitches) Now, simply knit every stitch for 3.5 inches, removing all markers, except for the one at the beginning of the round. Make the Toe Place one marker 13 stitches away from the beginning of the round and another 39 stitches away from it. Tension is very important when grafting. If it’s too tight, it’s really hard to fix. But, if you work it very loosely, you can go back afterwards and tighten the stitches “like when you lace a boot.” Thanks for the great description, Linsey! Sew the back seam. Darn in all ends. Add Swiss darning, if desired. ©2011, Lara Neel and journalgazette.net, All Rights Reserved.
© Copyright 2018