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It's all about the stripes!

Aug 22, 2011

Zigzag Scarf by Debbie Bliss, from Knits Accessories

When the kids go back to school I start thinking about fall knitting, and when I start thinking about fall knitting, I think about holiday knitting. And when I think about holiday knitting, I think: Knitted accessories!

To get ready for holiday knitting time, I went through my stash last weekend. It was so much fun to visit all of my yarn! I don't know about you, but I have my favorite yarns and I use them over and over. Therefore, I have lots of leftover balls of the same yarn in different colors. How do you solve this problem? I solve it by knitting stripes.

Last year I saw a chevron striped knitted scarf pattern, called Zigzag Scarf by Debbie Bliss, in Knits Accessories and I knew right then that I was going to make it. While I was looking through my yarn, I knew I could do it from my stash. Hooray!

I can see several of these scarves in my future; what a fun gift that's a stash-buster to boot.

Here's the stitch pattern:

Chevron Stripe Pattern
Row 1: (RS) K1, ssk, *k9, sl 2 sts individually pwise, k1, p2sso; rep from * to last 12 sts, k9, k2tog, k1.
Row 2: K1, *p1, k4, (k1, yo, k1) all in next st, k4; rep from * to last 2 sts, p1, k1.
Rep Rows 1 and 2 for pattern.

This chevron stitch pattern lends itself particularly well to stripes, from a skinny scarf to an afghan.

Managing Stripes while Knitting
from Knitted Accessories

Stripes are an easy way to add multiple colors to your work. They can be as narrow or as bold as you desire, and you can use many stripes in one project. Several shades of one hue give a subtle, almost dimensional effect, while contrasting colors make a work vibrate. Stripes are a fun way to experiment with color effects that can be further enhanced by stripe width and placement.

When you're working stripes back and forth in rows, it is easier, but not essential, to work in two-row increments so that all stripes begin on a knit row; in this way the yarn will always be at the edge where you need it. When you're working narrow stripes of just a few colors, it is not necessary to cut the yarn when you change colors-the unused color can be carried loosely up the side of your work for a few rows (Figure 1) or you can carry the colors for more than two rows by twisting the colors every other row (Figure 2). If you are working circularly, the yarn will always be at the beginning of the round.
To change colors, simply begin a new row (or round) with your new color. If the edge stitch seems too loose, you can tie the yarn end temporarily (you will undo the knot and work the end in later) to the color you are stopping close to the edge of your work (Figure 3).

Proceed with the new color for the desired number of rows and then either return to the original color or add yet another color. When you are finished, work the yarn ends carefully into the backside of the matching color (Figure 4).

You can download Knits Accessories now, so get your copy and make the Zigzag Scarf part of your holiday knitting this year!


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Julia H wrote
on Aug 27, 2011 3:04 PM

Please can you tell me how many stitches I need to cast on for this pattern? Thanks!

TamaraM wrote
on Aug 22, 2011 8:25 AM

For doing colorwork, those are incredibly poor graphics--you can't tell there are two colors at all.  Would it be possible to repost with better examples?