>Little Lace Scarf

>I just finished a very pretty scarf I put together using patterns from A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns by Barbara Walker. I “designed” it (picked the patterns!) to maximize the yardage so I could make a nice scarf with only one skein. (More pictures on Ravelry.)

The yarn is Little Knits Indie II, a silk-cashmere blend that is so lovely to work with. I received an offer from the owner of Little Knits to sell the pattern on her website! How thrilling, for my first (completed) lace project to be one someone wanted to sell! But I just don’t feel right selling a pattern when all I did was figure some math. Maybe if it had been a sweater, or some more complicated design, I would consider that, but not for a simple scarf.

So, here it is for anyone who is interested! This is only a description of what I did, and not a formal written-out pattern, but it’s very easy.

The scarf is constructed using the knitted-on-border method. Stitches for the border are cast on, then after the border is work it is bound off, leaving the last stitch on the needle. Stitches are then picked up along the straight side of the border for the body of the scarf. After working the body of the scarf, stitches are cast on the working needle for the 2nd border, using the crochet cast-on (or another method if you prefer; but the crochet cast-on gives an edge similar to the bind-off so the edges both look the same). The 2nd border is then worked as a knitted-on border: At the end of every odd (ws) row, the last border stitch is worked together with one scarf stitch (K2Tog or P2Tog). This “eats up” all the scarf stitches. Then the border is bound off, and there are only 2 tails to work in! For more information about this method, see the instructions for knitted-on borders in Victorian Lace Today or another reference-type book.

Yarn: One skein Little Knits Indie II
Needles: Size 3.00mm
Length of dental floss for a lifeline (to maximize yarn usage; explained later)
Tapestry Needle
Crochet hook size 3.00mm (for crochet cast-on)

GAUGE: Not critical; just get a fabric you like in stockinette and use those needles. It will be fine.

Openwork Edging (Walker, B., Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns, p. 367. (Schoolhouse Press edition, 1998)
Checkerboard Mesh ( ” , p. 267)

I charted these patterns from the written directions in the book on graph paper; this was not hard to do and made it much easier.

Border: Cast on 13 stitches for border, and work 4 repeats of Openwork Edging (80 rows). Bind off border stitches loosely, leaving last stitch on needle (do not bind off last stitch). If you want to keep track of how much yarn you use for the first border, so you can get the maximim length for your scarf with little waste, pull the yarn out as far as you can with one “pull” and tie a slip knot. When you get to the slip knot, make a tick mark, untie the knot, pull the yarn out again, and tie another slip knot. Keep track of how many “pulls” it takes and then you can estimate how much you’ll need for the 2nd border.

Body of scarf: With ws facing, pick up 39 stitches along straight side of border for a total of 40 stitches on needle. (You will be picking up every other row.)

Purl one row.

Following rows: (Row 1 is a WS row.) Slip one st knitwise WYIB, K2, work the appropriate row of the Checkerboard Mesh pattern (three row repeats), end K3. You will begin each row (including the ws rows) with Sl1, K2; work the row pattern; then end each row with K3. After last repeat, work Rows 1-4 again. Do not bind off.

(Note: I was able to get 20 20-row pattern repeats before deciding to stop and do the 2nd border. You may be able to get 21 repeats. Just in case your estimate from working the first border is off, run a lifeline through the stitches on the needle (dental floss on tapestry needle) of Row 4; work Rows 5-20 and then 1-4 again; and go on to the 2nd border. If you don’t have enough yarn to finish the border, just unravel back to the lifeline and start the border there.)

P 1 row, K 1 row (WS is now facing).

Border: After working final row (Row 4) of scarf, do not bind off. With WS facing, and using crochet cast-on, cast 13 stitches onto working needle: Wrap yarn around needle from front to back, insert crochet hook between wrap and working needle, and begin the crochet cast on. Keep that first one snug up against the stitches already on the needle. Work Row 1 of border (purl). When you get to the 13th border stitch on this and every odd-numbered (WS) row, purl that stitch together with the next stitch (which is a body stitch). You will be attaching the border to the body.

Work 4 repeats of the border pattern. After working Row 20 of the final border repeat, bind off loosely. Do not work in ends yet.
Block the scarf by pinning it out DRY and spraying with water to soak it, then let it dry. Don’t over stretch it during blocking; just enough to show and smooth out the pattern. Work in ends.

My scarf came out about 7″ wide by 55″ long. You could block it longer and skinnier if you wish because of the nature of the pattern.

That’s it! If you have any questions or suggestions to improve the directions, please let me know and I’ll make changes.

This was a fun scarf, and these patterns show off the yarn’s drape, softness, and lightness so well. I hope you enjoy making it and wearing it!


2 Responses

  1. >Thank you! I had a lot of fun “designing” and knitting this one.

  2. >Wow, it is beautiful! I wouldn’t worry about selling the pattern. Most designs these days are just what you did–take an existing stitch (or two) and put them together, figuring the math.

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