Extreme Double-knitting Pattern Highlight #4

Thanks for keeping up with my Extreme Double-knitting pattern highlights! Today we’re going to dig into one of my most sought-after techniques, and one of the patterns that’s taken a radical turn from the original. If you like what you see, consider preordering a copy!

Pattern #7: Open For Business

Open For Business is a sign, most often used in yarn shops. As such signs are wont to do, one layer says “open” while the other says “closed”. This is achieved by using two-pattern double-knitting for the entire pair of words. The chart is challenging to follow simply because of the sheer quantity of two-pattern charting — but a careful eye will follow it easily.

This pattern is not the one that’s taken a radical turn from the original. In fact, aside from recharting to make the pattern fit better in the oblong layout, it’s not changed at all from the original. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even re-knit it.

What has changed is the mounting solution. Since this is a sign, it has to be mounted so that it remains flat. The solution I came up with in the original book involved a couple of bent coat-hangers inserted strategically into the sides of the piece and the sides sewn up over them. The trouble with this solution was that the sharp-ish ends of the coat-hanger would tend to poke out, and it was hard to keep it actually flat.

What I saw many people do was to mount it on a pair of dowels so that one would hold the hanging string and the other would weight the bottom. This is easier to explain and looks nicer, so that’s what I did this time.

Pattern #8: Four Winds v2

This is the pattern that has taken a dramatic turn. The reason is twofold. First, many of the hats in my original book were done in worsted weight yarn. This caused the double-knit fabric to be quite a bit thicker than your average (wearable) hat should be. To make a double-knit hat more wearable, it should be done in a finer gauge yarn.

In addition, it turns out that there was a contract issue between Twist Collective (the original publisher of this pattern) and Cooperative Press, which resulted in the termination of my contract with Twist. This was no big loss as I had not been getting much in terms of revenue from this pattern for some time. However, I didn’t want to compound issues by republishing the pattern in the original form again.

For both of those reasons, I decided I needed to redesign this pattern from the ground up. In a sport weight yarn, I could make it more easily sizeable, and make some other changes.

First, the two-pattern lettering (where the cardinal directions are shown) section is now on a fold-up brim. This means that the letters are worked upside-down so they will be right-side up when the brim is folded.

Second, the fleur-de-lis option is entirely hidden in this version — it’s still worked to keep the fabric stable and the knitting interesting, but unless you don’t work the fold-up brim, it won’t be seen while wearing it.

Third, the points of the compass are now only in off-the-grid double-knitting. If there’s a big clamor for a plain charted version, I’ll consider this when releasing the standalone pattern later.

Finally, the crown decreases are staggered around the crown so that the crown is less square when it’s done.

All these together make for a better-designed and more wearable hat! I hope you enjoy it!

Like what you’ve seen in this post? Preorder Extreme Double-knitting today!

What else is new?

Not much this week! I’m waiting on a report from my Tech Editor but as of the writing of this post, I haven’t heard any update. Hopefully more on that front next week.

Oh wait — there was one thing: I’m booked at Stitches West (Santa Clara, CA) in February, 2019! I’ve been there the last 3 years, so this is probably no surprise, but I figured I should announce it since it is news.

Stay tuned! And if you’re just joining us now, feel free to visit the previous few posts (see the navigation below) for more info.

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