machine knitting midgauge standard bulky machknit knit machine-knit patterns

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

I've been knitting more ski hats for a local high school, so there hasn't been a lot of knitting time for me. No silk painting lately either! I'm done with the hats for another year, so now I can play.

In honor of the day, I thought I'd offer you a pattern for a knit hot pad. It can be either hand or machine knit. I was knitting these up in all sorts of patterns a while back. They make nice stocking stuffers, especially if personalized. I did a lesson on how to design things in DesignaKnit for my machine knitting guild retreat and also included directions for them in a Beginner's Style File article for Knitwords a few years ago. I aimed for a 8 x 8 inch size, but size doesn't matter so much as long as they are utilitarian. You need to use cotton or wool because synthetics would likely melt. I put a layer of heat resistant material inside. I can't remember what it's called, but you can purchase it at any sewing/fabric store. I did designs that were personalized, for different holidays and occasions, some with funny sayings and even college logos. Easy to do in DesignaKnit. The floats are enclosed. You don't have to do anything to them and in fact they help with the insulation factor.

To copy the graph, click on the picture above so that you get a larger version. Then right click and save to your desktop and print from there.

Knitting directions: The pattern is 53 stitches by 137 rows. Use a mk tension or hk needle size appropriate for your yarn. Note: If knitting by machine, it's a good idea to have the end needles select so that you don't get a hole at the side of the end hearts. If knitting by hand, twist the yarns at the beginning of the first heart in each row. I have the DAK <.pat> file if you want it. Just write to me and I'll email it to you. After knitting the piece and binding off, fold in half with right sides together. Cut a piece of insulating fabric making it 1/16" smaller all around and place it on top of the knitted piece. Pin everything together. Seam through all layers with a sewing machine (a very small seam allowance), leaving one side open for turning and turn right side out. Slip stitch the final edge together by hand with matching yarn. You can make a small I cord so that it looks like a typical hot pad and include it in the seam, or just skip it.

I have made some out of wool and felted them, but they get kind of thick and unruly. Also, most of the time when you felt something with longish floats, you get some funny puckering.

It's kind of a fun and mindless project. Sometimes a person needs something like that, ya know?

Hope you have a lovely day!