Monday, January 17, 2011

You Can't Eat Just One!

Every winter, the machine knitting groups go crazy for the "Potato Chip Scarf" (so named because you can't knit just one! And while knitting, you just can't stop at one wedge, it's addictive to just make "one more wedge"), and other ruffled scarves. I decided to finally give it a try. I found this Bernat Mosaic yarn at Zeller's, and couldn't decide if it would be something for me, or something for my colour-loving niece. I started off swatching for a tam for me, but didn't like the amount of math I'd have to do, and it was starting to look a little bright for something I'd put on my head. So, even though it doesn't match her tam exactly, nor her "monkey" hat/gloves she has that are in bright crayon colours, I decided to finally try the potato chip scarf for my niece, Allie.
There are a couple "patterns" on the internet for this, but of course, how likely is it that you have that exact yarn, machine, etc? I'm going to include what I did for this scarf, just in case someone else wants to give it a go.

Bernat Mosaic, 100% acrylic, 18st/4", 5mm needles, 209yds
Cast on 16sts with a closed cast on. T7.
Put two needles on the edge away from the carriage in hold (make sure carriage is set to not knit needles in hold/D position). Knit 2 rows.
Repeat this, until there are only 2 needles left, and knit 2 rows on those.
Set carriage to knit needles in hold, and knit 2 rows. That's one wedge.
To spread the ruffles apart, knit some plain rows before the next wedge. I didn't write down if I did for this one, but 4 rows is a good number to try (it's hard to tell from looking at the scarf, but I don't think I did plain rows, or maybe just 2).
Repeat until you almost run out of yarn. Cast off and give it a good steaming and patting.
You can see, I did NOT have a lot of yarn left! It's not extremely long but it's not exactly what you'd wear for warmth. However, it is surprisingly warm and bulky. I found that I needed to make it a little more narrow than I thought I would; if I used this yarn again, I'd probably use 14sts, and 6 plain rows between sections (otherwise, the wedges, being narrower, will really bunch up). Or may still stick to 4 rows, LOL. If you make it a lot narrower, use one needle out of work to keep the spiral effect, or 2 needles to make it more ruffly.
The scarf can also be worn so it's just ruffly, and not spirals!
I made that scarf in about 1 1/2 hours on New Years Eve. It excited me so much, I started another one for a different niece, 4 year old Nya who likes pink and got that piece of knitted fabric I made.I used Patons Lacette which is discontinued, but is a slightly fuzzy mohair blend (the never ending cone I used for all the ponchos, Christmas 2009).
LK150, T3, Cast on 24sts. Put 3 sts in hold away from carriage and knit two rows. Repeat until 3 sts left, knit two rows; put needles in work/set carriage to knit held sts, and knit 2 rows.
Again, I didn't write down if I knit plain rows between the wedges and the scarf has already gone. In the picture above, you can see how one side is spiraled, and the other side is ruffly.

Here, you can see how the short rows want to form a circle, but because you keep doing them, it just spirals around and around, like a staircase in a museum, LOL.
And because I felt bad that Allie's sister hadn't gotten anything knitted except the grey fingerless gloves, I went digging in my stash. I knew her coat was purple and grey. When I saw her open her coat at her birthday party, I thought it was a sort of dark plum colour. When I saw it at Christmas, it seemed so much brighter, so I wasn't sure what shade of purple would work and thought grey was a little boring (though I have a huge cone of grey). I found three balls of Bernat Boa that had been hibernating. One was missing the wrapper, so I thought maybe I had used a little to make cuffs on the 'magic stretch' gloves from the dollar store. One ball I had received during a gift exchange with a knitting guild...probably from 2006 or 2007.

It's very dark here, but it is various shades of plum. I thought it was discontinued, but Ravelry doesn't say so.
LK150, 15 sts, spaced every other needle. T12 (could even be looser). Put two needles into hold at a time, down until one st left, knit two "rows" on it, then put all needles into work and knit two rows. Then knit 4 plain rows before starting next wedge. Next time, I'd do only 2 plain rows, if any at all---the spirals are quite far apart. Another remedy could be to put three needles into hold each time.
The scarf feels quite substantial, for being only three balls. Out of curiousity, I weighed it. Somehow, it ended up being 157 grams....a little odd for 3 50gr balls (I had thought some had already been used, and I had a yard or two left over). Again, I think it could have been narrower, since Abby is only 8, but I think this is a scarf that she could use for a long time!


CrazyCarla said...

VERY NICE! I am so going to sneak one of these in.

Jemajo said...

So easy, and yet so complicated looking that I couldn't quite "get it" before. Thanks for the pattern and the clear photo of the pink scarf. They look terrific - definitely something I'll have to try for some girls I know!