Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Dictionary of Knitting and Crochet Pattern Abbreviations

Dictionary of Knitting and Crochet Pattern Abbreviations
This page shows the abbreviations that are commonly used in our patterns

approx = approximately
beg = begin(s)(ning)
bet, btwn = between
BO = bind off
CC = contrasting color
cn = cable needle
CO = cast on
cont = continu(e)(s)(ing)
dbl = double
dc = double crochet
dec = decreas(e)(s)(ing)
dpn(s) = double pointed needle(s)
dtr = double treble (triple) crochet
est = establish(ed)
ext = extension
foll = follow(s)(ing)
fpdc = front post double crochet
fpsc = front post single crochet
fptr = front post triple crochet
hdc = half double crochet
inc = increas(e)(s)(ing)
k = knit
k1b = knit 1 in the row below
k1b = knit through the back loop
k2tog = knit 2 together
k3tog = knit 3 together
Kfb = knit in front and back of st
lp(s) = loop(s)
M1 = make 1
M2 = make two
MC = main color
meas = measure(s)
ndl(s) = needle(s)
opp = opposite
p = purl
p1b = purl through the back loop
p2sso = pass 2 slipped sts over
p2tog = purl 2 together
p2togb = purl 2 together in back
p3tog = purl 3 together
pat = pattern
Pm = place marker
psso = pass slipped stitch over
PU = pick up
rem = remain(s)(ing)
rep = repeat(s)(ing)
rev = revers(e)(ing)
Rev St st = reverse stockinette stitch
rf = right front
RH = right hand
rnd(s) = round(s)
RS = right side
rsc = reverse single crochet
sc = single crochet
sc2tog = single crochet 2 together
sc3tog = single crochet 3 together
sk = skip
sk2p = Slip 1, k2tog, pass sl st over
skp = slip 1, knit 1, pass slipped stitch over
sl = slip
sl st = slip stitch
slip1-k1-psso = slip 1, knit 1, pass slip stitch over
sm = slip marker
sp(s) = space(s)
sq(s) = square(s)
ssk = slip, slip, knit
St st = Stockinette stitch
st(s) = stitch(es)
t-ch = turning chain
tbl = through the back loop
tog = together
tr = treble (triple) crochet
WS = wrong side
wyib = with yarn in back
wyif = with yarn in front
yo = yarn over

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Basic Sock Pattern

Basic Sock Pattern
This pattern works best with a robust sock weight or skinny sport weight yarn - anything from Socka Colours to Patons Look at Me! baby sport works well. My current favourite is the Look at Me! because it is inexpensive, easy to find, comfy to wear and comes in some of the wildest colours I've ever seen. The socks in the photo are made of Look at Me! - and believe me, people do! I have also made these socks in cotton (Wendy's DK cotton), using ribbing all the way down the cuff and on the top of the foot to give the socks more stretch, since cotton is not elastic.

The socks fit a Ladies size 8 with my tension; you will need 2 50g balls of yarn. Have some contrast colour yarn handy for the toes if you are making socks for a long foot, or if you want to extend the cuff length.

100 grams sock yarn of your choice, Gauge: 7 sts= 1 inch
Needles: 3 mm (2 to 3 US) double points
Size: Ladies size 8

Using 3 mm needles (possibly 3.5 if your tension is tighter than mine), CO 56 sts. Join in a round. (Mark beginning of the round).

Rib in K2, P2 rib for 7 inches or desired leg length.

Divide For Heel:
Put one half of the stitches (28), centered on the beginning of the round, on a needle. (The easiest way to do this is to knit the first 14 sts, then turn and slip the 14 sts on the other side of the marker onto the needle). Place the other half on a holder - these stitches will be the instep later on. Work the heel flap over the 28 sts (using contrast colour if desired):

P across the back of the heel flap, slipping the first stitch.
Sl1, K1 across.

Repeat these 2 rows till you have worked 28 rows (count the slipped stitches which should be 14).

Turning The Heel:
You are making short rows to shape a little "cup" for the heel.

1. Starting on the right side, knit halfway across the heel flap (14 sts) plus 2 (16). Sl1, K1, psso. K1. Turn.
2. Sl1, P5, P2tog, P1. Turn.
3. Sl1, K across to the gap (where you turned), slip the first stitch before the gap, K the stitch on the other side, psso, K1. Turn again.
4. Sl1, P across to the gap. P2tog across the gap. P1. Turn.

Continue in this manner until all the heel flap stitches have been used up.

Join the first colour back in if you made a contrasting heel. Now you will be picking up the stitches on the sides of the heel flap and knitting around the sock again. Those stitches you put aside before doing the heel flap have waited patiently and will be put back into use!

By slipping the first stitch of each row on the heel flap, you have made a lovely chain edge which will be easy to pick up. You should be able to get 14 stitches on each side, but don't worry if you get more or less than this. I usually pick up the stitches on one needle and knit them onto another, twisting them by knitting into the back of the loop.

Knit across those patient instep stitches, or continue them in ribbing, then pick up and knit the same number of stitches on the other side of the heel flap. Knit one half of the heel flap stitches (8 or 9) onto this needle. Mark the centre as the beginning of the round. You now have three needles with rather a lot of stitches on them - one for each side of the gusset and one for the instep. If you have a spare needle in about the same size you can put the instep stitches on two needles instead - I find this is much easier to work.

Now you want to make a row of decreases on each side of the heel flap to get back to the same number of stitches you began with (56).

Knit to 3 sts from the end of needle 1, K2tog, K1.
Rib across the instep sts.
On needles 3 and 4, K first st, Sl1, K1, psso. Knit to end.

K next round plain (ribbing the instep if desired).
Repeat decrease round every other round until you have 56 sts again.

Continue with knit sole and ribbed instep (just follow the established rib) until the foot measures 2½" less than your foot length. I use my 7" double points to give me a rough idea of when to begin the toe shaping, since my foot is 9½" long.

Shape Toe:
Join contrast colour if using such.
Knit one round plain.

Decrease round:
K to 3 sts from end of first needle, K2tog, K1.
K first st on instep needle, Sl1, psso, knit to 3 sts from end of instep needle (or end of needle 3 if you split the instep sts), K2tog, K1.
Last needle, K1, Sl1, psso, K to end.

Knit one round plain.
Continue alternating plain and decrease rounds until you have half the number of sts you began with (28, or 7 on each of 4 needles). Then decrease on every round until you have 12 sts left all together.

Cut off the yarn leaving an 18" tail. Thread a needle with this yarn tail and graft these sts together using the Kitchener stitch or just thread the end through all the sts and draw them up tightly. Weave the end of the yarn into the back of the stitches (turn the sock inside out).

Weave in all your yarn ends, making sure to leave no knots. Knots in a sock will give you nasty blisters! There, you've made a sock! Welcome to the new addiction... Now you can make the mate. Handmade socks don't always match. If you want to, you can create a wardrobe of single unmatched but coordinating socks and wear a different pair every time!

Monday, October 15, 2007

10-Second Relaxation Techniques

10 Second Relaxation Techniques

Arch your eyebrows as high as you can. Hold them there for 10 seconds, then release them suddenly. Relax. Now frown deeply, lowering your eyebrows as far you can. Hold for 10 seconds. Release suddenly. Relax.

Close your eyes tightly. Hold for 10 seconds, then open them quickly. Relax.

Wrinkle up your nose and raise your cheeks at the same time. Hold for 10 seconds. Release quickly. Relax.

Press your lips together as tightly as you can. Feel the tendons under your chin getting taut. Hold 10 seconds. Release suddenly. Relax.

Bring the tip of your tongue up against the roof of your mouth, behind your upper teeth, pressing hard. Muscles around the jaw and under the chin should feel taut. Hold 10 seconds, then let go quickly. Relax.

In a high-back chair or lying down, press your head back. Hold 10 seconds, then release quickly. Relax. Or rotate your head in a semi-circle from side to side. Begin with the ear pressed toward the shoulder, roll forward and then reverse directions.

Raise your shoulders in a shrug, as high as you can. At the same time, extend your arms stiffly behind you and angled outward, with your palms facing back and thumbs pointing down. Hold 10 seconds, then relax shoulders.

Slowly draw the deepest breath you can. Hold it at least 6 seconds. Exhale quickly. Relax. Do this four times.

Upper Arms
Touch your fingertips to your shoulders, while tensing your biceps. Hold tense for 10 seconds, then let go. Relax.

Lower Arms
Hold your arms straight out in front, palms down. Bend your hands upward at the wrist, until your hands and forearms make a 90° angle. Hold for 10 seconds. Relax.

Extend both arms in front, palms up. Make tight fists and hold tense for 10 seconds. Release quickly. Relax.

Push your stomach muscles out as far as you can. Hold for 10 seconds. Release. Now draw in all your stomach muscles, keeping them tight for 10 seconds. Release and relax.

Press your upper legs together tightly, but don't let the area below the knees touch. Hold for 10 seconds, then relax.

Lower Legs
Sitting on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you, put your feet together and point your toes forward. Hold 10 seconds. Now using your ankles, bend your feet back toward your body as far as possible. Hold for 10 seconds. Relax.

Mock Cable Pattern

(multiple of 5 plus 2)

YO = Yarn over.
Psso = pass sl st over.

Start your swatch by casting on 22 sts
Working straight rows:
Row 1: p2, *sl 1, knit 2, psso 2 knit sts, p2; rep from * across.
Row 2: knit 2, *p1, yo, p1, knit 2; rep from * across
Row 3: p2, *knit 3, p2; rep from * across.
Row 4: knit 2, *p3, knit 2; rep from * across.

(When working in the round do this...)
Row 1: p2, *sl 1, knit 2, psso 2 knit sts, p2; rep from * across.
Row 2: p2, *knit 1, yo, knit 1, p2; rep from * across.
Row 3 & 4: p2, *knit 3, p2; rep from * across.

or, for socks, 4-row repetition:
R1: k3, p2
R2: k3, p2
R3: s1 knitwise, k2, pssok2, p2
R4: k2, yo, k1, 02