machine knitting midgauge standard bulky machknit knit machine-knit patterns

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Free machine knit pattern for a baby Santa hat

Pretty much done with gifts, done knitting the annual order for Minnetonka Ski Team hats, finished with other holiday preparations, so I thought I'd knit a baby Santa hat for my grandson. The fish hat I thought about doing will have to wait. This hat is really soft---although it doesn't look like it in the picture.

Here's the pattern if you are interested.

Machine: Standard gauge (no ribber required)
Gauge of stockinette part: 7 st x 10 r = 1” at T 7
Yarn: Tamm Sky or yarn that will knit to gauge (a couple of ounces) white for brim and red for hat, and white Lion Brand Fun Fur (1/4 skein)for brim
Finished sizes: 0-3 months (6-9 months in parenthesis)—about 13.5” (15”) circumference unstretched at brim.

Cast on with waste yarn over 101 (109) needles, every other needle. (I did every other needle to accommodate the doubled yarn of the brim then changed to single strand for the body of the hat.) Knit about an inch of waste yarn. Change to the strand of white and fun fur run separately through the mast and joined at the carriage. Yank the knitting down after every row to make sure the fur doesn’t get hung up on the gate pegs. Knit 20 rows at T 9, or twice the depth you want the brim. Hang a hem and knit one row to seal. Cut the two yarns leaving ends long enough to weave in later. Change to red, single strand, put the in- between needles into work and changing to T 7, RC 000, knit 44 (54) rows. Remove on waste yarn or garter bar and decrease every 8 stitches across. Knit 6 rows. Remove on waste yarn or garter bar and decrease every 7 stitches across, Knit 6 rows. Continue in this manner until you are decreasing every 4 stitches across, then knit 10 rows. After decreasing every 3 stitches across, knit 20 rows. Decrease every 2 stitches across and knit 10 rows. Continue decreasing evenly across until you have 4 or 5 stitches left. Change to I cord setting---consult your manual, but for Brother, push in one part button. Knit I cord for 20 rows and bind off.

TIE- knit a 4 stitch I cord 270 rows at T 7 and bind off.

FINISHING: Remove the waste yarn from the start of the hem. Seam the side of the hat leaving about 1 ½ inches open at the bottom. That is, leave the white part and a little of the red open. I did this because the doubled yarn of the brim wasn’t as stretchy as normal, and I thought I needed to allow for a larger head size. The tie can make the adjustment if necessary. (Baby not available right now for a fitting!) Run the I cord through the hem and make pom poms with the red yarn for the ends of the tie. Make one larger pom pom of the fun fur and white yarn for the tip of the hat. Hide all yarn ends. Brush the fun fur a little to make it move to the right side. Ho ho ho, really cute, don’t you think?

Side opening to adjust for size:

Note: On Ravelry I've seen some darling ones that have a much longer tip--- some that drape all the way to the ground. I opted to make a shorter one to avoid all thoughts of the possibility of the end being wrapped around the baby's neck. If you were using the hat just for a picture and wanted the longer end, just increase the number of plain rows between decreases to get the desired length.

And...... here's my cutie. I took some stills from a little video, hence the numbers at the bottom. I just thought his expressions were so sweet.

Yes, I'm besotted.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Beautiful Machine Knit Fingerless Gloves

Some people are "naturals" I think. I received this email from Mattie who needed just a tiny bit of clarification about the fingerless mitts pattern on my blog here and off she went. Aren't they handsome? She used Red Heart Gemstone yarn. I love the colors in it. She said:

Thank you for the instructions. I finally finished making a pair. It turned out really nice. Now to make a few more. These gloves were a great start for me, as I just bought the Silver Reed 860 mid gauge a couple of weeks ago and finally had the courage to use it, instead of just admiring it.
Thanks again,

If you're interested in making this pattern, scroll down on the right side to the picture, click on it and you'll be taken to the free pattern.

I'm gratified that someone else could make the mitts from my pattern! Mattie is to be congratulated on a job well done!!!

And, here's another job well done... the new grandson. He's 2 1/2 months old. You sure can't tell he was early. He's growing like a weed. Every now and then I stop and marvel at how lucky we are to have him.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Free Machine Knit Pattern for a Baby Bee Hat

I've been trying to get back into the swing of knitting. I always seem to be able to muster up the energy to make something for the new grandson, even when there are other things I should be finishing.

This pattern actually wasn't my original idea. A hand knit version of the hat was shown at one of the knit clubs I go to and I thought it was adorable. So, since it wasn't my own design, I thought I should share it with you rather than selling the pattern. If you want to save the pattern, highlight what you want and copy it, then paste into a word processing program.

Machine knit Baby Bee Hat by Mar Heck
Machine standard gauge (no ribber required)
Gauge 7 st x 10 r = 4" (10 cm) T 7
Yarn Small amounts that will knit to gauge. Black and gold. I used Mary Lou Solo.
Finished sizes 0-3 months (6-9 months in parenthesis); About 13 1/2" (15") circumference unstretched.
Cast on with waste yarn over 95 (105) needles. Knit a few rows. Knit one row ravel cord left to right. Change to black. T 5, knit 9 rows. Knit one row T 8. T6, knit 9 rows. Hang a hem from the ravel cord. Change to T 7 and knit one row.
RC 000.From here on out, knit 4 rows gold, 4 rows black. Carry unused yarn up the side. Don't snip the yarn when you change colors. Knit 44 (54 rows). Begin decreases. Remove on waste yarn or garter bar if you have one. Decrease every 8 stitches across. (Double up stitches 7 and 8 with no empty needles.) Knit 2 rows, remembering to keep to the color sequence. Decrease every 7 stitches across (double up stitches 6 and 7 across). Knit 2 rows. Continue in this manner until you have decreased every 5 stitches across (doubling up stitch 4 and 5). Decrease the tension to T 5, Knit 2 rows. Take off on 12" piece of yarn and cinch up tightly. Remove the ravel cord and waste yarn. Mattress stitch the seam, being careful to keep the stripes going nicely across the seam.

I cord Antennae: Make 2. With black yarn, bring out 5 needles. (Yup, 5 to make a fatter antenna.) Set machine to slip one way, knit the other. Ewrap onto the 5 needles. RC 000. T 3, Knit 30 rows and bind off, leaving a 3" end to secure the antennae to the inside of the hat. Make tiny pom pom for the end of each antenna and fasten on securely. Put both antennae (the un-pom pommed ends) into the hole at the top of the hat, making them even in length. Turn the hat inside out and tack the ends of the antennae securely with the 3" end you left on. Hide the ends. DONE!

I have the hem turned up, but it could go either way--folded up or not. If you wanted to make a larger hat, just use one of your tried and true patterns to get the dimensions right and follow the bee-themed idea. Would work on any other machine too once you get the dimensions you want. I'm selling the finished hat in my Etsy shop too if you are interested in just buying the hat!

Now I'm thinking of knitting a baby fish hat.
The hand knit pattern is on Knitty. The description: Do you smell something fishy? No, of course you don’t! Don’t worry that bad smells will scare people away when you wear this hat. This 100% odorless fish will attract people to you instead.

I think it would be easy to convert to mk. Oh, the patterning possibilities. I'm thinking red lips, scales, snowflakes??? Stay tuned.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Baby No-Scratch Mittens

Made three versions of a no-scratch mitten. I just eye-balled what I thought would be a newborn size. They might be a little large. One is out of T shirt cotton, not very warm. The second is out of fleece, a little warmer. And, warmest yet is a lined one. Might be way too hot for California, but it does get cold at night in the winter. This little guy I've been making things for is an October baby.

Sewing kept me busy for a day so I could stay inside in the air conditioning. It's 97 degrees here with a heat index of 115 degrees because of the humidity. I can't imagine what it would be like trying to survive this heat without the air. After our beastly awful winter, it's hard to complain.

If you would like to make some of these you could print out my pattern. You'd want to adjust your printer so that the mitt piece is the dimensions on my diagram.

You can right click on the picture, select copy and then paste it into your paint program. Print from there.

Hmmm. What shall I make next? Any suggestions?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Baby Snuggle Bag

Not sure what to call this. It's like a sleeping bag for newborns. Cuddle sack? Bunting? If you search on Ravelry, you'll find lots of them. The newborns have their arms inside, older babies have the sack pulled up to their armpits. Anyway, what could be easier to knit? It's just a long rectangle folded and seamed at the sides.

I used a midgauge machine (Silver Reed 860 with ribber), Tension 3 for the stockinette and tension 3/3 for the ribs. I didn't do the rib very tightly because I didn't want it to pull in. The gauge before washing was 5.25 st x 7.75 rows. After laundering 6 st x 8.25 rows. It's Conshohoken 100% cotton. Really soft. I have machine washed and dried it and so it shrank an inch both directions. The finished dimensions are 10.5" wide x 15 inches long with the ribbing folded over 5". No doubt you have different yarn than I have, so if you want to make it, figure out your gauge and calculate so that you have the finished dimensions of approximately 10.5" x 15", good for a newborn. Do about 5" of ribbing, 30" of stockinette and another 5" of ribbing.

For mine, I cast on 63 stitches, knit 36 rows in 1 x 1 rib, changed to stockinette. RC 000, knit to Row 240. Then transferred for rib and knit the 36 rows of ribbing. Seamed, ends worked in and laundered...done.

I think it's probably good for up to 4-5 months before the baby starts to roll around too much. The large ribbing gives some lee-way as far as length is concerned. Might embroider a little something on it to jazz it up a bit. Still have one in the works with sleeves. Need to finish that.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Knit a Baby Rib Warmer

Here's an easy pattern for you to knit. I think I could have done a better job with the pocket, but oh well. Next time.

Machine: Standard Gauge 4.5 mm with ribber or garter carriage
Yarn: Tamm Bebe; three 3/8" buttons needed.
Gauge: at T 7 7 st x 10 r = 1”
Finished size: newborn
Cute boy or girl vest to be worn with a T shirt or onesie and jeans or pants. Super simple to make.

Pocket: Cast on 26 st. At T 7 knit 20 rows. Transfer for 2 x 2 rib. Knit 8 rows. Knit one loose row right to left. Transfer rib stitches to main bed. Chain cast off. Set aside.
Body Back: Reserve a 24" piece of yarn to bind off center neck stitches. Ewrap cast on for 2 x 2 rib (or whatever cast on you like) over 71 stitches. Knit 14 rows T 8/8. Transfer rib stitches to main bed, change to main carriage. I used a large tension so the rib wouldn’t pull in so much. RC 000. Change to T 7, Knit stockinette to RC 42. Bind off 5 stitches. RC 43 bind off 5 stitches. Decrease one stitch full fashioned both sides every 2 rows 6 X. On row 58 with 51 stitches left, transfer for 2 x 2 rib. Knit to RC 77. Transfer 27 center rib stitches to main bed and bind off around the gate pegs with the reserved yarn. Carefully pull the stitches off the gate pegs. Put left side in hold (stitches are still in rib pattern). Knit right strap, still in rib, to RC 82 and bind off these 12 stitches. Return left 12 strap stitches to work. Knit to RC 87. Make two button holes evenly spaced by transferring a rib stitch to main bed. Leave needle in work. Knit 5 more rows. Transfer stitches to main bed and bind off.
Body Front: Reserve a 24" piece of yarn for binding off neck stitches. Knit the same as the back except begin 4 x 4 rib at RC 51. Knit in rib to RC 66. Transfer 27 center st to main bed and bind off as you did the back. Put one strap to hold and knit other strap to RC 82. Bind off. Return other strap to work and knit to RC 82. Bind off.
Sew two small buttons on the strap that matches the tabbed strap. Seam the other shoulder. Mattress stitch the side seams. Steam lightly. I needed to steam flat the front neck rib a little. Sew on the patch pocket. Add a matching button if desired. Run in all yarn ends, of course.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Did you know?

I thought I'd put in a short post about navigating my blog. Someone wrote to me and asked how to find the free patterns on my blog. There are a few ways. One, you could read all the entries (long, but terribly exciting). Click on Older Posts at the bottom of your scren to get back in time. Two, you could scroll down on the right side of the blog and look at the pictures. When you click on one, you're taken to the post that contains the pattern. Three, you can click on the free patterns topic and all of them are put together in a long string. Four, you can do a search in the search box and whatever you are searching for comes up.

I guess that's enough ways, no?

On the baby front, I'm knitting a sleep sac with sleeves. The popular ones these days are just bags ---some fancier than others--made to "swaddle" the baby. I was thinking that all would stay in place better if the sac had arms. I think the old fashioned name for such a thing is "bunting". It's 100% cotton, so I need to wash and preshrink it. Right now it looks like it would fit a 6 month old. I 'spect it will shrink down to newborn size. Lovely soft Conshohocken yarn. Wish they were still in business. Sigh...

Saturday, June 11, 2011

One Little, Two Little, Four Little Baby Hats

Remember that commercial, "Wait 'til I get my Hanes on you!"???? Evidently some people objected to the play on words, clever though it was, so you don't hear it so much anymore. That's the song that kept going through my mind as I was making these baby hats. I found these men's Hanes 100% cotton undershirts, never been worn, still in the pkg in a dresser drawer. So, natchurally, I had to do something with them. I'm really into this repurposing and upcycling thing these days. Washed them to preshrink and went looking for a baby hat pattern on the internet. I found one at and it printed out just the right size. I had a purchased hat to compare to for size and it seemed correct.

These are a size 3-6 months, so I probably will make more at a larger size...maybe. I seem to remember it was difficult keeping a hat on the baby after a while. My kids would always pull them off. I had some small embroidery designs that worked ok. I like this one the best. I don't have a serger, but I found a stretch stitch on my sewing machine that overlocked the edge and looks exactly like a serger stitch to me.
The hats are really soft, stretchy and awfully cute, if I do say so myself.

Now I really need to get out to the garden. The weather has been so unpredictable---103 F 4 days ago and now only 67. Hope I don't freeze.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Link for Cloth Baby Shoes

I found the site where I got the cloth shoes pattern. In case you are interested, it's
I notice that they revised the pattern a tiny bit since I downloaded it. The newer version recommends 2 - 4" pieces of 1/8" elastic. I was close, so maybe they'll fit.

Cloth Shoes - Repurposed Stuff - Done!

Well, I got three pairs out of the deal. They turned out pretty sweet. My only concern is whether the ankle is big enough. The pattern didn't say how long to cut the elastic, so I just guestimated by the picture in the pattern.

Ok, now I really do need to go clean, plant stuff, go grocery shopping!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Cloth Baby Shoes - Repurposed Stuff

I should be cleaning house and/or planting stuff. Company is coming on Thursday and there really is a lot I should do to get the house in order. I've only been able to plant 13 of my 100 dahlias, and those I planted in the rain. What a crummy spring. it was 89 degrees F yesterday---a fluke. But I'm not doing either and am involved in baby shoes!

This is the pattern I'm using:

I downloaded it ages ago and can't find/can't remember whose pattern it is, regrettably, or I'd give credit where credit is due. Of course I couldn't just make them out of the material recommended by the pattern. Have to put my own spin on them.

I spent yesterday afternoon embroidering the instep pieces. I had reduced the size to fit the piece using my embroidery software. Supposedly if you hold the ctrl key while making the design smaller, the program is supposed to adjust the density accordingly. It did not, to my disappointment. Some of the tops turned out to be bulletproof. So I had to toss those. Here's an example.
Is cute, but is so dense it doesn't even bend. A lot of time wasted, but I learned a lesson that I have to use designs that are originally sized to be tiny. Or, I need to digitize my own designs.

These turned out ok. So I have enough for three pairs, size 6 months. Have cut out the linings (another shirt) and the other pieces (old jeans) so today I'm ready to put them together. If I can figure it out, that is. Will post tomorrow if they turn out.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Machine Knit Tuck Baby Blanket

Knit a charity blanket yesterday using a kind of boring tuck pattern:

I'm not so happy with the side edges.
I guess I'll have to crochet around them so they look decent before donating it.
I had wanted to avoid the extra work. I think I know what I did wrong. In DAK, I put one plain row on the border on both sides rather than extending the pattern to the edges. Will have to change it and try a small swatch to see if it makes a difference. .

I made a pale green cotton tuck baby blanket last year for charity and the edges looked fine on that one.

My friend, Sandy, taught me a trick you might like to try with acrylic. When done, wash the blanket. Before you put it in the dryer, fold it twice and baste the edges together really close to the edge. When it comes out of the dryer, the edges lie pretty flat. I steamed all the borders just a tad being careful not to melt the yarn. So that part went ok, it's just the stitches that don't look very even.

Guess I'll have to get out my garter carriage and see if I like that better. Just goes to show, doesn't matter how long you've been knitting, not everything turns out to be wonderful.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Presto Chango!

It always has bothered me that people put their babies on those Koala Bear changing stations with all the germs that must be lurking. So, I thought a changing pad would be nice to take along then wash when needed. As I usually do, I checked out on the internet what others had done to make such an item, then went ahead and did my own thing. Mainly, I wanted to see what size people usually made.

Another shirt repurposed! I cut out a rectangle 13" wide x 24" long out of the shirt back. Then used some polar fleece for the other side. Since the shirt material had lines on it I was able to quilt the two pieces together easily.
Then I put 3/4" bias tape around the edges. I made a pocket and sewed a closure with velcro. The pocket is sewn to the inside. It holds baby wipes, hand sanitizer, butt paste, whatever.
Then I got the bright idea to stick a teddy bear in the pocket for the baby to hang on to while being changed. I knit two 6 x 8" pieces of stockinette and sewed a teddy bear shape, stuffed him and turned him right side out.

I made a 42 inch tie out of the rest of the bias tape and sewed it onthe end of the thing on the outside. It's easy to roll up, tie and everything stays in place.
The "package" ends up to be 13" wide x 8" deep, depending on how much stuff you put in the pocket.
Am I proud of myself, or what?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Cutest so far

Here's the latest project. It's supposed to look like a baseball jersey. The father is crazy about baseball, so I thought he might like this. I looked at some of the store-bought outfits I've purchased to get the proportions and drew up a pattern in DAK. I also checked out Glenda Overman's Baby Gift Catalog to get an idea of how she shaped the panties. I used two strands of some mystery cotton yarns a friend gave me. The white has a little bit of slubbiness and the blue is smooth.
Here are my notes about the dimensions prewash:

I think it went from about a size 6 months to 3 months--- But the baby sizes are so arbitrary and dependent on the baby as to when the outfit will be wearable. At least now it's all preshrunk and they can throw the stuff in the washer and dryer.
Here are some closeups:

I have no idea about the wasteband as to whether it will fit. DAK says a baby's waist measurement is 17" for this size, so that's what I went with. Diapers will take up some room, for sure.
Fun when something turns out exactly like you wanted it. That doesn't always happen!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Baby Fix for the Day

Just for kicks, yesterday I made some bibs, newborn size. Cost: $0.00 for 5.
I used one of my husband's shirts. It is new-ish, but he got some kind of paint on one front shirt-tail, so it's not something that I'd want to donate. But the material is nice and boyish. For the backing I used old jeans. Two of the bibs have a pocket (the shirt's pockets), making kind of a decorative thing. Both the shirt and jeans have been washed many times, so they're done shrinking. I think they're pretty cute. So tiny! As of today, we're half way to the due date!

If you have need of some bibs, here's a pattern for you:

(Click to get a larger view.)
Cut a front and a back, two ties about 3/4" wide. Fold over the raw edges of the ties to the center and sew. Tuck the ties inside between the top and bottom pieces. Sew around the bib with a 1/2" seam, being careful to catch only the end of the ties in the seam. Leave a 3" opening either at the side or bottom. Clip the seams generously. Turn right side out. Press, fold in the 3" opening, top stitch all around. Done.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Machine Knit Baby Sweater Using Sock Yarn

More baby things! I was inspired by this sideways knit sweater, a free pattern by Opal yarns, using a yarn called Opal Brazil Sock Yarn. I had saved it a couple of years ago and now when I search the internet, I can't find the pattern anymore. The yarn isn't available either, as far as I can tell. To make it on my standard gauge machine, I crafted it up in DesignaKnit, with my own gauge.
This is what I came up with. When I put the images here, they get a little blurry, so if you want the actual numbers, click on the image and it will enlarge with more legible numbers :


Knitting a sideways sweater is a little confusing, so you'll need to think it through a little and make a cheat sheet for yourself as to when to put stitches on waste yarn, when to pick up the whole thing again, when to bind off a section. Maybe it wouldn't be as tricky for you as it was for me to visualize. I think once it's on the machine, it makes more sense. Sorry, I didn't actually write out the steps or I'd provide that here.
So, this is what the sweater looks like. I used some sock yarn (lost the label)that gave a 7st x 10 row gauge at T 10 on the standard gauge machine.

After I got the piece off the machine, I noticed that the fronts matched---were mirror images of each other. I didn't try to get it that way! And, I'm sure if I had tried, I would have screwed it up. Funny!!!
To do the collar, I left live stitches on the front neck on waste yarn and picked up stitches on the back neck. I knit a few rows stockinette and a few rows ribbing so the collar wouldn't roll. Picked up the front plackets and cuffs to do 1 x 1 rib on these as well.

I can't decide whether I love this sweater or not. For some odd reason, it reminds me of a 1970's leisure suit! And the colors are pretty shocking/strong for a baby. Fortunately, this baby will probably, most likely, undoubtedly have lots of things to choose from in his wardrobe!!!
PS It's supposed to be about a size 12 months.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sewing a little baby quilt

I thought I'd try my hand at a "raggy" baby quilt. I can't say it's the most favorite thing I've ever made, although it did only take me two days, maybe 6-7 hrs to make. I bought 3 different flannels that were 42 inches wide and 42 inches long. Then I cut them up to 7" squares, nothing wasted. I arranged them so that one print was the same on all the pieces (the back side) and the top would be a checkerboard of the other two fabrics. Sewed a squiggly X across each piece and sewed the patches together using a one inch seam allowance with all seams on the right side of the blanket.

I sat outside in the glorious spring sun and cut little snips every 3/4" across all seams. Took me about an hour and a half. I loved this fabric---very soft and very sweet prints.

Ok, now the part I'm not so happy about. I washed and dried the thing to get the raggy/chenille effect on the seams. Checked the washer, then the dryer often to clean out the threads. The final effect: to me, it looks used and old. The fabric is still soft, but sort of wrinkly. I am told this is how it is supposed to look, but I'm not that enthused about the look of it. O well, had to try it.

Here's a closeup of one of the prints:

And, here's what the backside looks like, a bunch of little cowboys and cowgirls:

Not my proudest day, but I think it will be a good blanket to use on the floor or in the car because it's a little heavy. On to the next baby project...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Debbie Bliss' Ribbed Baby Jacket Converted to Machine Knit

This pattern has captured my attention 3 times now. The first two times I knit it on the midgauge.

This time I converted it to the standard gauge machine. (Yes, lazy. It's squished under the lid of my scanner.) I used cotton and made a size larger than I wanted the finished size to be. Then I threw it in the washer and dryer so that it would do all its shrinking before I give it away. The cotton turned out so soft, I'm really pleased with it. And the variegated blues look kind of like jeans. Boyish, anyway.
I'm not too sure about the buttons, though. What do you think? I can always change it. The "button holes" are just crocheted loops. I guess my thinking was that the big buttons would be kind of trendy/funky.
You can find the pattern here: The baby model is so adorable. But there are a couple of things I don't like about the pattern. The bottom curls like crazy with no edge treatment and the sleeves do as well. So, I added the 2 x 2 ribbings and I think it's a big improvement. Besides, when the baby grows, the sleeve cuffs can be shortened and then rolled down. If you knit this on a midgauge, you can pretty much just follow the pattern as is. I suspect the prototype was machine knitted anyway by the way the pattern is written. But, if you want to knit it on the standard gauge machine, you need to do a tiny bit of math.

A friend and I worked on this together, did a schematic and adapted it. Here's what the schematic looks like for 12 months. If you'd want a different size or different gauge, first download the pattern from the website and then use the measurements to come up with your own stitches and rows. If you click on the picture it will enlarge and you'll be able to see the numbers more clearly.

Yes, she's getting obsessed with baby stuff....