I am a yarn and fibre addict. I admit it quite freely. However, it’s time to do something with some of my stashed yarn and fleece in an orderly manner. Therefore, my 2014 New Year’s Resolution is to make 1 item every day from my giant yarn and fleece stash. It can be a tiny toy, or a skein of handspun, or finishing a project begun earlier than 1 Jan 2014, or a non-knit/crochet project like weaving or needle/wet felting—but it must use up stash obtained earlier than 1 Jan 2014!!!!! and be a finished object!!!!! You will find photos of the finished items on my Facebook Page in the Photo Album “2014 Item a Day”
Day 1 I made this cute little bracelet, using up 1 skein of cotton embroidery thread:
Day 2–today–I made something every Victorian bride would have needed several of in her trousseau or ‘hope’ chest–a washcloth.
If she was eloping she may not have had time to make enough prior to her marriage, and would have to knit some at her leisure or hope that her friends would send her a little gift with 4 or 6 cloths tied with a bit of pretty ribbon–still a very welcome house-warming present for family or friends.
I used up leftover Bernat Handicrafter cotton.
The cloth is perfect to use as a paper-towel substitute in the kitchen, or it makes a wonderful absorbent mug rug. I used a reversible, simple, 1 row stitch pattern that belongs to the ‘brioche stitch’ family. Jane Gaugain used it in an 1846 pattern for a little scarf. The cloth can be made larger or smaller simply by adding or subtracting stitches in multiples of 3–for a larger cloth, you may want to cast on 42, or 54, etc; for a smaller coaster-size cloth try 21.
I used size 4mm needles and Cast on 30 stitches; I worked 24 rows in the first colour, tied on my second colour and worked 24 more rows, then cast off.
If you are counting rows it is important to remember: 2 rows LOOKS like 1 row!
Cast on 30 stitches [or the number you want, in multiples of 3].
Row 1: *Yarn over, slip 1 stitch purlwise, knit 2 together*; repeat from * – * to the end of the row.
Repeat this Row 47 times more [or until your item is the length you want].
Slip 1 purlwise
Knit 2 together
Repeat the 3 steps to end of row:
Slip 1 purlwise
Knit 2 together remembering to keep yarn at front to complete the yarn over!
That’s it! Just repeat Row 1, then Cast Off when you have finished as many rows as you want. I washed my cloth by hand and then dried it flat, so I could block it to shape. It is such a simple, effective stitch that is reversible–perfect for scarves, cowls, fingerless mitts, etc.
Tomorrow I’ll share another Victorian-era stitch pattern I’m going to use to make a cloth. Cloths are a wonderful way to learn new stitches, and they make very nice gifts or craft fair items!
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