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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Week of Scarves! Day 3 - Ribs and Ruffles Scarf

This scarf knits up on big needles really fast and is done with one skein of Misti Chunky yarn. The little ruffle at the ends gives this a nice feminine look.

Ribs and Ruffles Scarf

Materials: 1 skein Misti Chunky Baby Alpaca, Size 13 Needles
Finished size: 48" x 5"

Cast on 60 stitches.

Ruffle Row One: K2Tog across row (you will now have 30 stitches)
Ruffle Row Two: K2Tog across row (you will now have 15 stitches)

Begin Rib pattern.
Row One Rib Pattern: *K3, bring yarn forward, slip stitch as if to purl, bring yarn back, repeat pattern from *, end row with K3.
Row Two Rib Pattern: K1, bring yarn forward, slip stitch as if to purl, bring yarn back *K3, bring yarn forward, slip stitch as if to purl, bring yarn back, repeat pattern from *, end row with K1.
Continue rib pattern until you have approximately 8 yards left on skein. Begin ending ruffle pattern.

Ending Ruffle Pattern Row One:
K into front and back of each stitch in row (you will now have 30 stitches)
Ending Ruffle Pattern Row Two: Knit into front and back of each stitch in row (you will now have 60 stitches)
Bind off with similar tension to cast on row.

I've also made this scarf where I have doubled the width and added length to make this a more "winter hearty" scarf.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Week of Scarves! Day 2 - Knitted Lengthwise Scarf

Knitting this scarf is a wonderful way to use up your scraps of yarn or to match the yarn you've used in a hat or mittens. It is knit lengthwise and can be done in a woven stitch, a seed stitch, box stitch, or moss stitch. The examples in the photos are all done with the woven stitch, which produce a woven look on the right side and a seed stitch on the wrong side.

Knitted Lengthwise Scarf Pattern

Needle: Size appropriate for your yarn and desired guage (I used a size 4 needle, 60" long circular)
Yarn: Approximately 6 yards of yarn per row, if allowing for fringe. About 400 yards of yarn for the finished scarf.
Guage: 4 to 4 1/2 stitches per inch in worsted weight garter stitch, 6 stitches per inch in sport/DK weight garter stitch.
Finished Size: 5" x 42"

Number of Cast-on Stitches
Stitches/inch 4.0
40" length 160

45" length 180

50" length 200

55" length 220

60" length 240

Stitches/inch 4.5
40" length 180

45" length 203

50" length 225

55" length 248

60" length 270

Stitches/inch 5.0

40" length 200

45" length 225

50" length 250

55" length 275

60" length 300

Stitches/inch 5.5

40" length 220

45" length 248

50" length 275

55" length 303

60" length 330

Woven Stitch
Over an odd number of stitches or multiples of 4 + 1

Row 1 (RS) K1, *yf, sl 1 purlwise, yb, K1. Rep from * to end.
Row 2 (WS) P2, *yb, sl 1 purlwise, yf, P1. Rep from * to last stitch, P1.
Repeat these two rows.

If you would like a fringe, you can change yarn every row or just cut and start a new piece of yarn at every row. Leave a long tail at the beginning and end of each row.

Bind off and weave in ends. Trim fringe. I braided my fringe for a different look.

Monday, December 29, 2008

A Week of Scarves! Day 1 - Irish Hiking Scarf

Living in Minnesota certainly has it's disadvantages when it comes to wintery weather. I tend to make a LOT of scarves. It's really not a fetish, just practical. I decided that this week I would showcase a week of my favorite scarves. The first one is the Irish Hiking Scarf, pattern by Adrian Bazilia. This was first published in Hello Yarn and is now available as a free internet pattern (see fine print at the bottom of this post for copyright usage compliance.) It's a great beginning cabling project - easy and fun!

Irish Hiking Scarf

Size US 8 needles and a cable needle
350 yards of worsted weight yarn
Finished size approximately 5 1/2" x 55"


Cast on 42 stitches.

Row 1. (WS) K2, P2, K2, P6, K2, P2, K2, P6, K2, P2, K2, P6, K2, P2, K2
Row 2. (RS) K4, P2, K6, P2, K2, P2, K6, P2, K2, P2, K6, P2, K4
Row 3. (WS) repeat row 1
Row 4. (RS) repeat row 2
Row 5. (WS) repeat row 1.
Row 6. (RS) repeat row 2.
Row 7. (WS) repeat row 1.
Row 8. (RS) K4, P2, C6F, P2, K2, P2, C6F, P2, K2, P2, C6F, P2, K4

Repeat these rows to desired length, ending on row 7. Bind off.


C6F = Slip 3 sts. onto a cable needle and hold to front of work. K3, then K the 3 sts. off cable needle.

Hello Yarn Credits: All content © Hello Yarn. All rights reserved. These patterns are for personal and non-profit use only. This means you can knit for yourself, for a gift, for charity, or for a charity auction/sale. You can print out the patterns for friends, if you wish, as long as you print straight from my site so the copyright information is intact. You may not sell items made from these patterns for profit or give these patterns away in your store to sell yarn. Visit for more patterns

Friday, December 26, 2008

Online Knitting Magazines & Resources

There are some new winter editions of online knitting magazines that are now available.

Knitty ( is one of my favorite sites and has lots of free patterns available. Look through their pattern archives as well!

Twist ( A very nice site with good articles. The patterns are all available for purchase.

Knit.1 Online Magazine ( I just discovered this site - lots of information and cool free patterns.

MetaPostModernKnitting ( Some cute free patterns, knitting trends, blog.

The Inside Loop ( Online magazine dedicated to fiber arts in the U.K. Free patterns and more.

Some other great knitting resources and websites:

Knitter's Review ( Lots of how-to's, product reviews, forum's, etc.

Ravelry ( This has to be my all-time favorite knitting website. A totally comprehensive site where you can gain a wealth of knowledge, show off your projects, get knitting advice, chat, inventory your yarn and library, join swaps, and much more. Check it out, you will love it!

Knitting Help ( Free videos; you can even learn to knit with their knitting videos.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Noro Silk Garden Scarf Completed!

I promised pictures of the completed scarf, so here they are! The scarf isn't blocked yet, but I'll get to that this week. The colors couldn't have turned out better - this is now officially my favorite scarf. Check my earlier post for the free scarf pattern and directional notes.

Monday, December 22, 2008

How to Make Snag Free Stitch Markers

I love those decorative stitch markers and decided to try my hand at making some. These are the snag proof ones that can be customized to any size needle. Here's a step by step tutorial on how it's done.


decorative bead
crimp bead
crimp bead cover
nylon coated beading wire
crimping pliers
wire cutter

Step one: Cut a piece of nylon coated beading wire a little larger than you want for your stitch marker. Thread it through the bead, making a loop.

Step two: Slide the crimp bead through both wire ends at the bottom of the bead.

Step three: With pliers, crimp bead and cut off bead wire ends below crimped bead.

Step four: Put crimp cover in crimping pliers, then place around crimped bead. Gently squeeze until crimp cover is secure around the crimp bead. Don't squeeze too tight!

That's it! Easy, right? The nice part is that these are snag proof, since they use nylon coated wire that is covered with the crimp bead and crimp bead cover.

Here are a couple that I made in just a few minutes.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Italy Yarn Shops

When I was planning a trip to Italy a couple of years ago, I searched online for yarn shops in Italy. I found a few, but found a comprehensive list lacking. We visited Italy again this fall and I again researched online for yarn stores. I found a few more listed and saw many inquiries about "Where can I find yarn shops in Italy?" So I've put together a list of yarn shops in Italy for those lucky enough to be going there. I have personally visited several of these shops and others were simply added to the list from researching and googling blogs, discussion groups, and from personal recommendations. I'd love for this to be a comprehensive, useful list, so if you have an addition or deletion, please email me and I'll update the list. Pics are great, too!

Pictures above are from the yarn shop called Nonsololana in Orvietto, Umbria region.


Nonsololana (Not only wool!)
Via Magalotti, 10
Umbria 05018
+39 0763 342466
Sign outside says "Paul and Shark". It looks like a men's wear shop, but inside they carry a HUGE selection of wool, cotton, and other kinds of yarn in every imaginable color.

Brogi Filati di Tanzini
Vicolo Pollaioli 2
Located on an unnamed street (Vicolo translates as "alley") that opens off the Campo, on the downhill side. Small but stacked to the ceiling with shelves of yarn.

Cose di Lana (di Manola e Giusy)Via Pantaneto, 17
Tuscany 53100
+39 0577 48550

Filatura di Crosa [Reported Closed]
Via de' Guicciardini, 21 r.
50125 Firenze
+39 (55) 28 91 93 (voice and fax)
Mirko Filati
Piazza San Lorenzo (below street level)
Florence, Italy

Smaller selection, but beautiful cashmere blend yarn for $5 eu a skein (Fall, 2008)

Beatrice Galli [Reported Closed]
Borgo San Iacopo, 24/r
50125 Florence Italy
Tel. +
Fax +

(just off the Ponte Vecchio)

Campolmi Roberto Filati srlVia F. Portinari, 19/21 R
50122 - Firenze
Tel. - Fax
A big shop, almost outlet style, with LOTS of yarn, located behind the Cathedral of Santa Maria Del Fiore.
Largest selection of yarn that I’ve seen in the shops in Italy. Worth the trip.

Boutique della lana
Viale Petrocchi 191
Not far from Piazza San Francesco (or Piazza Mazzini), in the Porta al Borgo area. Large selection of various producers, mainly classic yarns.

Ditta Chiti, Maglieria merceria filati
Via di Cerchi 7/r (in the area near Piazza della Signoria)

+39 (55) 212262

Filati Borselli
Via del Can Bianco 11
Near the post office.

Lovi Lane

Via Fillungo 156 (past Anfiteatro square)
Small shop with limited choice, but unbeatable prices!

Bonifazi Nadia
Via Le S. Giovanni Bosco, 22

Botto Vittorina--Arte e Lana
Via Acqui 49/51

Arcobaleno Tuscolo, 18

Nonsolo Lana di Elisabetta Rosci
V. Gregorio VII, 317/A

Filmoda di Svizzero S
Via Eurialo, 31/33

Fior di Lana s.a.s.
Largo di Loggia, 11

Il Fiocco
Via Badia di Cava, 88

Carolla M. Grazia
Via Catania, 45

D'antoni Enrica
Via Vallarsa, 15

Linette Lane
Piazza Filippo Carli, 23

Mafil s.n.c.
Via D. Campari 8/12

Fabi Patrizia
Via Valtellina, 35

Filatura di Crosa
Via Bergamo, 15 (Piazza Fiume)
+39 (6) 854 9020

Di Giacomo Paola
Via f. Nicolai, 77

Perugia Carla
Via Guibbomari, 69

Zamarian Lidia
Via Monte Cervialto, 50

Lana della Vecchiacorner of the Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Via Baullari, near the Campo de' Fiori 

La bottega della Lana

Via Pergolesi 1
Subway lines 1 and 2, Loreto stop
Small shop, devoted to knitting and crochet only.
Very good, classic yarns.

Centro della lana
Via Montevideo 25
Subway line 2, Sant'Agostino stop
Large selection of all yarn available in Italy.

Via Nino Bixio 7
Subway line 1, Porta Venezia stop
Outlet of the Lanar industries, selling yarn in bulk, rolled in more manageable hanks or in balls.

Meazza Lane
Via De Sanctis 47
Subway line 2, Abbiategrasso stop
Outlet type shop with special offers form Northern Italy yarn producers.

La Compagnia del Cotone

Via Mazzini 44, I-10123 Torino
+39 (11) 87 83 81
Rowan distributor for Italy.
30124 Venezia
San Marco 3718
Calle della Mandola (della Cortesia)
Tel/Fax: 041 522 51 52

Chit-Chat ~ addi Click Interchangeable Circular Knitting Needles

I just read about the new Addi Click interchangeable knitting needles that are now on the market. I love the individual addi Turbo circular needles that I own. The cords don’t twist like some other brands and the knitting “feel” is far superior because of the smooth nickel plated needles. I like to think I knit faster and better with these, but it might be all in my head. Either way, they have always been my favorite circular needle.

Now Addi (German made needles, U.S. distributor Skacel) has come out with a set of interchangeable circular needles. The addi Clicks come with a lifetime guarantee and include:
• 10 different sizes of addi Turbo™ tips (US 4 – US 15 - does not include US 5 and US 10.5) These are constructed of nickel-plated, hollow brass.
• 3 different lengths of new, extremely pliable blue cord (24”, 32” and 40”)
• one connector piece which you can use either to join your cable together so that it becomes a stitch holder or to combine cords for longer lengths.
• A heart-shaped needle sizer
• A luxurious padded case for your needles

Oooh, how I’d love to own a set! The price tag is around $150 retail for the set. The online Addi Needle Shop currently has a pre-order sale on these for $139.95. I’m still thinking about it…..maybe I could justify the purchase price if it was, say, a Valentine’s Day gift from my husband? He’s always looking for good ideas, so I might just drop a hint or two :-)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Noro Silk Garden Striped Scarf Free Pattern

My newest favorite scarf is the Noro Silk Garden scarf. I found the free pattern at Jared Flood's website. He states:

"First off, this is not MY pattern. It’s been done time and time again. I’ve written up how I did MY version on my blog, but I’m not claiming to have designed this. "

Ditto for me. I pretty much followed the same pattern that he posted, but it's not an original pattern, just the version that I made of the Noro Silk Garden striped scarf.

Noro Silk Garden Striped Scarf Pattern

Materials: 4 skeins of Noro Silk Garden yarn, two of the same color for Main Color (MC) and one each of complementary contrast colors (CC) I used two skeins of color 201, one skein of color 239, and one skein of color 244 for my scarf. I chose these colors because they had a lot of dark tones, which I like.

Needles: The original pattern called for size 7 needles. I knit loosely, so I used size 4 needles, which gave me the same scarf width of 5.5 inches across.

Cast on an odd number of stitches. I used 37; the original pattern called for 39. Whatever odd number gives you the desired scarf width will work. The pattern is worked in a 1x1 ribbing, which gives it a thick, warm texture.

Row 1:
Using MC, knit one, purl one. Repeat to end of row.

Row 2:
Slip the first stitch purlwise. Knit one, purl one. Repeat knit one, purl one to last stitch. Slip last stitch purlwise.

Row 3:
Using CC, knit one, purl one. Repeat to end of row.

Row 4:
Slip the first stitch purlwise. Knit one, purl one. Repeat knit one, purl one to last stitch. Slip last stitch purlwise.

Repeat rows 1-4 until you scarf is desired length or until you are almost out of yarn. Bind off.

Notes: Be sure to make the first stitch of each color change row kind of loose so the scarf lays flat and doesn't pull too tightly on the side. No need to weave in ends after color change - color is changed after every two rows, so the yarn can be carried easily without problems.

This scarf whips up really fast - I just started it a day ago and I expect to complete it this weekend. I'll post pics of the completed scarf soon!