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  • ALittleBitSheepish

Perfect for travellers, but also great for accountants and financiers, colourwork currency symbols are worked on the leg and upper foot of these socks. Worked either toe up or top down with a German short row heel, choose the symbols you want to work from the charts provided.

Charts included- Afghani, Baht, Bitcoin, Cedi, Dollar, Dong, Dram, Euro, Franc, Guilder, Kip, Lempira, Lira, Manat, Peso, Pound, Pula, Quetzal, Rand, Rouble, Rupee, Tugrik, Yen/Yuan. Krona (uses different stitch count).

Needles: 2.0 mm, US size 0 either double pointed needles or circular(s). 2.5 mm, US size 1 ½ either double pointed needles or circular(s).

Yarn: MC - 60 (70, 80, 90, 100) g 4 ply / sock / fingering weight yarn, 420 m per 100 g. CC - 40 (50, 60, 70, 70) g 4 ply / sock / fingering weight yarn, 420 m per 100 g.

Sample shown in: MC - A Little Bit Sheepish British Bluefaced Leicester / nylon sock yarn; 75% wool / 25% nylon; 420 m per 100 g; in “Vulcan”. CC - Knitpicks Stroll, 75% fine superwash Merino wool / 25% nylon, 211 m per 50 g in “Pumpkin”.

Notions: Tapestry needle, 2 stitch markers.

Skills: Judy’s magic cast on (toe up), longtail cast on (top down), working in the round, knit, purl, colourwork, working flat, short rows (instructions given), decreasing stitches, Kitchener stitch (top down), weaving in ends.

Gauge: 30 stitches and 44 rows over 10 cm / 4” in stockinette colourwork using larger needles, measured after blocking.

Sizing: Pattern gives stitch counts for extra small (small, medium, large, extra large); approximately equivalent to a finished measurement of 16 (18.5, 21, 24, 26.5) cm / 6 ¼ (7 ¼, 8 ½, 9 ½, 10 ½)” circumference at ball of foot. Leg and foot lengths can be altered to suit.

Sample shows size small worked with symbols- dollar, GBP, Euro, Yen, Rupee, Bhat, Rouble and Tugrik.

Find the pattern on Ravelry and Payhip.

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  • ALittleBitSheepish

Do you swatch? I asked on Instagram recently, about half the replies were yes to swatching, which dropped to about a quarter when I followed the question up with always?

So what is it and why should we do it?

A swatch is basically a sample of your project (applies to knitting, weaving, crochet, felting etc but we will focus on knitting today). It will tell you about the fabric your chosen yarn, tools and method will make, and gives you a chance to change things before you have made a whole project that ends up being not quite what you hoped for. It is also an essential tool for making garments fit the way you want them to.

How to (simple version):

  • Cast on some stitches.

  • Work for a while in the stitch specified by the pattern.

  • Try something different if needed (for example needle size or yarn).

  • Cast off.

  • Wash and dry your swatch the way you will wash your finished object.

  • Assess the fabric, for example, do you like the drape, what gauge have you achieved (stitches in an inch or row), does the yarn work with the stitch pattern?

  • Swatch again if you think something needs changing.

A little more detail:

What size should I make?

This will depend on your materials, but if it is too small it might not give the information you need. Ideally it should be at least 6" in each direction. The one in the photo is on the small side!!

What needles/yarn do I use?

Your pattern should give you some guidance on this. Look for the weight of the yarn (lace, 4-ply, DK etc) and choose something similar. Try the needles listed in the pattern as a starting point.

What stitch pattern do I work?

The pattern should tell you what stitch the gauge swatch is to be worked in and whether it should be blocked before measurement. You should knit in the same way as the final project, for example, in the round or flat as this can affect gauge (many people have a looser purl stitch than knit stitch).

How do I stop it curling, it is difficult to measure?

Four rows of knit at the start and end, and four knit stitches at the start and end of each row should fix this. Remember these do not count in the 6" measurement. Alternatively you can pin your swatch to measure it, but avoid stretching it out of shape.

How do I get an accurate measurement for number of stitches and rows?

Ideally measure in several places and take an average. This is why it is important that your swatch is not too small.

My gauge doesn't match the pattern, what should I change?

If you have too many stitches/rows per inch try a larger needle.

Not enough stitches/rows per inch try a smaller needle.

Depending on the pattern the row gauge might be less critical than the stitch gauge.

What am I looking for in the fabric?

Do you like the drape (how the fabric bends, flexes, hangs and moves) for what you are making? A loose open fabric might be great for a shawl but less so for a winter hat.

Does the yarn show the stitch pattern? A fuzzy yarn might hide cables and lace stitches.

Doesn't swatching waste time and yarn?

Less time than making a whole sweater that doesn't fit. The yarn can be pulled out of the swatch and knit with once you have the information you need.

Hate swatching? It seems you are not alone, so how can you dodge it if you really don't want to?

  • Take the risk. Your project might come out too large or small, or you might not like the fabric. You can always rip it out or give it to someone else.

  • Take the gauge from a previous project. If you are a very consistent knitter and have used the exact same yarn and needle combination before you might be able to do this.

  • Experience. If you knit a lot you might be able to judge if a particular yarn and needles will make the pattern in a way you will be happy with. For example, I know if I am making a sock a typical 4-ply sock yarn, on 2.5 mm needles will need about 56 stitches to fit me, a few more for cables, a few less for lace.

  • Start on a small part of the project. For example, start with the sweater sleeve and use it as your gauge swatch. If it is not right there is less to rip out.

But you might have heard swatches lie. Sometimes the information you get from your swatch doesn't exactly match the larger project, but you will get closer to your end goal with the swatch than without.

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  • ALittleBitSheepish

The thick squishy texture of this stitch pattern gives a warm snuggly beanie. The ribbed texture gives a super stretchy fabric that gives a snug fit. Quick to knit up in DK yarn you will have a cosy head in no time at all.

Yarn: 60 (70, 80, 90) g DK weight yarn, approximately 225 m / 246 yds per 100 g.

Needles: 3.0 mm / US 2.5 double pointed needles or 60 cm / 24” circular needle for working in the round on a medium circumference.

4.0 mm / US 6 double pointed needles or 60 cm / 24” circular needle for working in the round on a medium circumference.

Notions: 5 (6, 7, 8) stitch markers, tapestry needle.

Skills: Cast on, working in the round, knit, purl, decreases, weaving in ends.

Sizing: Pattern gives stitch counts for extra small (small, medium, large) adult size; approximately equivalent to 31.5 (37.5, 44, 50) cm / 12½ (14¾ , 17¼ , 19½)” knitted circumference. The ribbed texture is very stretchy; choose a size 5-10 cm / 2-4” smaller than your head measurement for a snug fit.

Find the pattern on Ravelry or Payhip.

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