Knitty Gritty with Britty: Green and Gold

By on September 23, 2011

Something weird happened today, you guys. I woke up, and it was actually cold outside. Not freezing cold, but it-would-be-a-good-idea-to-dress-in-layers cold. Let’s settle on chilly. It was the rain that brought it on.

And though it may be hot again by the time my words go into print, believe me, at the time of writing this, it was 59 degrees and raining outside.

So, I went down to Jo-Ann’s Fabric and Craft store to get my pre-Autumn knitting on.

Forgive me experienced knitters and yarn connoisseurs, but I am on a budget and it’s the closest yarn place to my house. What’s on my needles this time…oh, nothing special, just a scarf. But it’s knit in a pretty unique way!

Most us of learn how to make scarves the same way: cast on some stitches, usually about 10 or so, knit a thousand rows until we run out of yarn, and bind off. And that gets you a basic, cute scarf.

But what if we casted on an absurd amount of stitches and only knit for a couple of rows?

You get the same size scarf, but a different look.

The stitches will run vertically rather than horizontally. If you add stripes in the mix, it will have the same vertical effect.

I choose green and gold for the colors to represent UAB. You too can knit this inexpensive scarf and show your school pride.

You can get really crazy-proud and iron on a Blazer patch if you’d like. The amount of wool in the scarf will most likely support it. And hey, it’s cheaper than anything you’d find elsewhere!

I strongly recommend an interchangeable needle set for this project. You can get 32-inch long circular needles, but if you have a handy-dandy kit already, there’s no need to buy anything new.

You can just connect all your cables together and choose your needle size. This will work even better if you use a larger needle for casting on and binding off, like I do. A good starter kit is Denise Interchangeable Knitting Needles. Look into it!

(Also, here’s a tip for straightening out coiled up circular needles: let them soak in warm water for a few minutes. It’s convenient if your needle cable lies flat for this).

1 skein of Lionbrand Wool-Ease (80% acrylic, 20% wool) in #180 Forest Green Heather or 197 yards of any other dark green worsted weight yarn
1 skein of Lionbrand Wool-Ease in #171 Gold or 197 yards of any other gold worsted weight yarn
32-inch size U.S. 8 circular needle
5 stitch markers
Size H/8 crochet hook for fringe (optional)

Cast on 300 stitches long tail style. (I used 13-15 times of my arm’s length for the tail). Yeah, I know that’s a helluva lot of stitches. To make it easier on yourself, place a stitch marker after every fifty stitches so you won’t lose count.

If your left over tail is too long, cut off the excess, leaving about an 8 inch tail still attached. Please note that you are NOT going to knit in the round, even though you’re using circulars.

This scarf is worked in garter stitch because it is simple and lies flat. I would avoid working in stockinette because of its curling. Ribbing would also work, as would seed stitch or any other flat sitting stitch. I chose garter because it is just the knit stitch through out. Remember knit-newbs, garter stitch is knitting every row – no purling!

I decided to work 4 rows in each color before switching off to the next color. With a long tail cast on, you can count your cast on as your first row. I really like the look of skinny scarves, so my scarf was 20 rows long total.

If you like your scarves thicker, by all means knit more rows! Just know you’ll probably need about two skiens for both of your colors, depending on how big you want it.

I also chose to have more green in the scarf than gold just because I prefer that color. The striping order and the number of stripes is also up to you. This is a very customizable project, so just have fun! When you reach your desired amount of rows, bind off removing all your stitch markers and weave in all ends.

How to make fringe: Determine how many fringe bits can be attached to your scarf. On each end of my scarf I had 8 fringe bits, but depending on how many rows you did, you can add more or less.

Cut your two yarns in lengths at least six inches long, making however many fringe bits you need. Each fringe bit will consist of one strand of each color, in total 2 strands of yarn per bit. To attach the fringe, use your crochet hook and poke it through a stitch near the very bottom of one end of your scarf, with the right side of the scarf facing you.

Fold the two strands so the ends of the yarn meet. Place the middle portion of your strands onto your crochet hook and pull the strands through the scarf (but only slightly because you don’t want to pull the whole fringe bit through!)

We’ll refer to this as a loop. Now, wrap the strands around your hook (clockwise) and pull it all the way through your loop. Tug securely, and you have fringe! You can trim your bits later so they are all even. (You can always look up videos for better explanations.)

And there you have it, a UAB scarf you made all by yourself. Pat yourself on the back, knitters.

And brave the Indian summer knowing you can dawn your scarf in mid-October…maybe.

Britty Reese
Staff Writer

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