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Pick Up Sticks


I was exceedingly lucky that my mother taught me to knit when I was six years old. My first attempts were pretty simple, but it was not long before I was knitting clothes for my dolls.

Some time around then my mum taught me to knit cables, and a life-long love affair began. The only thing was I never liked how they only looked good on one side. So when I heard about reversible cables I knew I would have to do something with them.

At first I thought a scarf, especially as reversible cables tend to make quite a thick cloth. But when I saw a ’hanging cable,’ made by dropping the stitch on either side of the cable, a host of possibilities opened up. A whole lot of experimentation later, and I had a reversible cable that was still light and lacy.

The mix of blues, greens and purples in this Dream in Color yarn make me think of the New Zealand seas and paua shells. And of course, my mom, the New Zealander who first taught me to knit cables. So mum, this one is named for you.

model: Ilissa Jestadt photos: Peter Jestadt, Hermione Jaschinski

SIZE
One
 
FINISHED MEASUREMENTS
Width: 20 inches
Length: 70 inches
Note: Measurements taken after blocking.
 
MATERIALS

Dream In Color Smooshy Sock Yarn [100% Merino Wool; 450yd/411m per 4oz skein]; color: #VS330 Dusky Aurora; 3 skeins

Recommended needle size:
1 set US #6/4mm straight needles
1 set US #6/4mm double-point needles (only 2 are used)
[always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]

Waste yarn
Cable needle
19 stitch markers, 6 of one type and 13 of another
Tapestry needle

 
GAUGE
34 sts/31 rows = 4 inches in 1x1 Rib
Note: While gauge is not important for this project, it is important to produce a fabric with a nice drape. Be sure to use a larger needle than the size recommended on the ball band. For example, the yarn used for the sample recommends needles between US #1/2.5mm and US #3/3.25mm. I used US #6/4mm needles.
 
PATTERN NOTES

[Knitty’s list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here]

To join in a new ball of yarn, I knotted the ends together two stitches in from the side edge, and later wove in the ends up or down the ribbing. This hid the join nicely.
If you are working with a variegated, semi-solid or hand painted yarn and are concerned about color variations between skeins, join the new skein early and work two rows alternately from each skein, for several inches.

Directions for a Provisional Cast On can be found here.

Instructions for grafting can be found here.

Information about blocking can be found here and here.

M1: Insert left needle, from front to back, under strand of yarn which runs between last stitch on left needle and first stitch on right needle. Knit as usual; do not knit this stitch through back loop. This helps maintain an even tension after the stitch is dropped.

C8BR: Slip next 4 sts to cable needle and hold to back of work, k1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl; then work [k1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl] over sts from cable needle.

PATTERN
Using Provisional Cast On, CO 137 sts.

Note: When placing stitch markers between the charts in the Set-up Row, use the type of marker of which you have 6. When placing markers as indicated within each chart, use the type of marker of which you have 13.

Set-up Row [RS]: Work 8 sts of Chart A, place marker; work 20 sts of Chart B, place marker; work 8 sts of Chart A, place marker; work 65 sts of Chart C, working outlined pattern repeat 6 times, place marker; work 8 sts of Chart A, place marker; work 20 sts of Chart B, place marker; work 8 sts of Chart A.

Work in pattern as set, noting the following:
  • For Chart A, work Rows 1-7, then repeat Rows 2-7 as needed.
  • For Charts B and C, work Rows 1-31, then repeat Rows 8-31 as needed.

Continue in pattern until work measures approx. 66 inches, ending with Row 31 of Charts B and C (Row 7 of Chart A).

Work 5 more rows in pattern: Rows 8-12 of Chart A, Rows 32-36 of Charts B and C.

Upper Edge:
To bind off the sts of this wrap, the cabled band at the side edge is continued along the end of the piece, and the sts of the wrap are worked together with the sts at the edge of the cabled band. If you’ve ever worked a lace egding on a shawl, attaching it to the live sts of the shawl at the beginning or end of the edging rows, you will be familiar with how this works.
I recommend using two double-point needles to work the sts of the cabled band.

In the first row, you will work short rows to angle the band around the corner of the wrap. After this first row, work these 8 sts following Chart A, beginning with Row 6. Work only Rows 2-7 (the outlined pattern repeat) of Chart A.

Row 1 [RS]: [K1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl, turn work] twice, [k1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl] twice.
Rows 2-9: Work the 8 sts of the edging in pattern, beginning with Row 6 of Chart A. When Row 9 is complete, you will have just completed a C8BR.

Row 10 (Joining Row) [WS]: Sl next st of wrap to beginning of double-point needle which holds sts of cabled band, [k2tog tbl] first st of band together with st of wrap; work in pattern to end.

Row 11 (Joining Row) [RS]: Work in pattern to last st of band, slip next st of wrap to end of double-point needle, [p2tog tbl] last st of band together with st of wrap.

Rows 12-13: Work as for Rows 10-11. You will have just joined the cabled band to the first column of sts of the Chart B cable.

Rows 14-21: Work in pattern. When Row 21 is complete, you will have just completed a C8BR.

Row 22 [WS]: Work as for Row 10.
Row 23 [RS]: Work as for Row 11.
Row 24 [WS]: Sl next 2 sts of wrap to beginning of double-point needle which holds sts of cabled band, [k3tog tbl] first st of band together with 2 sts of wrap; work in pattern to end.

Row 25 [RS]: Work in pattern to last st of band, slip next 2 sts of wrap to end of double-point needle, [p3tog tbl] last st of band together with 2 sts of wrap.

Row 26 [WS]: Work as for Row 10.

Row 27 [RS]: Slip next 4 sts to cable needle and hold to back of work, k1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl; then work [k1 tbl, p1, k1] over first 3 sts from cable needle; slip next st of wrap to end of double-point needle, [p2tog tbl] last st of band together with st of wrap.

Rows 28-33: Work in pattern. When Row 33 is complete, you will have just completed a C8BR.

Continue working edging as established by Rows 10-33, as follows:
When the next set of sts to be joined is a column of 4 sts, work Rows 10-21.
When the next set of sts to be joined is a column of 8 sts, work Rows 22-33.

When all sts have been joined, you will have just worked Rows 10-21.

Next Row [WS]: [K1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl, turn work] twice, [k1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl] twice.

Graft the 8 sts of the band to the remaining 8 sts of the wrap.

Lower Edge:
Remove the waste yarn from the CO edge and place the resulting live sts on the straight needle.

Place the first 7 sts (all sts of cabled band along one side) on the double-point needle with the WS facing, and join the yarn.

Set-Up Row [WS]: K1 tbl, p1, k1, p1 tbl, k1 tbl, p1, kfb. 8 sts.
Work as for Upper Edge.

FINISHING
1Weave in ends and wet block or steam block.
ABOUT THE DESIGNER

After living in New Zealand for most of her life, Keri now lives in Toronto with her partner Mike.

She spends her time trying to find some kind of balance between knitting, embroidery, building things around the house, and pretending to train for a triathlon.