Tag Archives: knitting

Choose Your Own Adventure Hat

This morning I found a stack of hats I knitted for my son that he has worn from birth to present.

Choose Your Own Adventure Hat | Make this striped ear flap hat using yarn scraps of all different colors. Free pattern from alaskaknitnat.com

It’s hard to believe he fit into that teeny green hat! The biggest, most worn hat is definitely too small so I decided it was time to make him a new one.

Since Jack is 3 and has all the opinions in the world, I thought it would be fun to let him choose the colors for his hat. I opted for an ear flap hat to keep his body warm during recess.

Choose Your Own Adventure Hat | Make this striped ear flap hat using yarn scraps of all different colors. Free pattern from alaskaknitnat.com

We had a really fun time together today picking colors as we went along. When I sent a photo to a friend she said, “It’s like a Choose Your Own Adventure hat!” We have a title, folks!

Continue reading Choose Your Own Adventure Hat

Alaska Flag Hat – A Free Pattern

Earlier this summer I made a patriotic hat that I just knew I’d wear at least once before fall. Sure enough it was cool and rainy on the Fourth of July. I was finishing up the pom pom of my Old Glory Hat last month before meeting with my friend Fernanda about some flower arrangements. She lit up when she saw the stars and stripes; she was gaga for the giant pom pom.

She offhandedly suggested I made an Alaska flag hat. I was up for the challenge.

I started this hat on a road trip to Homer where I would be meeting Fernanda and a group of people on Yukon Island for a writing retreat with Julia O’Malley.

By the time my carpool arrived in Homer I was finishing up the North Star.

I think I’ll be making quite a few of these babies.

Alaska Flag Hat | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com

Alaska Flag Hat — A Free Knitting Pattern

Materials:

  • Lamb’s Pride bulky in Lemon Drop and Blue Boy
  • Size US 10 circular needle
  • Size US 10 double pointed needles
  • Darning needle
  • Place marker

Alaska Flag Hat | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com

Abbreviations:

  • CO – cast on
  • K2, P2 – knit 2, purl 2
  • st st – stockinette stitch
  • K2tog – knit two stitches together

Alaska Flag Hat | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com

Directions:

CO 72 st. K2, P2 ribbing for 13 rounds. Place marker.

Switch to blue and knit in st st for 36 rounds or until piece measures 8 inches total length.

Begin decreasing as follows:

*K2tog, k6*, repeat till end of round.
K 1 round
*K2tog, k5*, repeat till end of round.
K 1 round
*K2tog, k4*, repeat till end of round.
K 1 round. While doing this, transfer to the double points as you go so there are about 11 stitches on each needle (four in all).
*K2tog, k3*, repeat till end of round.
K 1 round
*K2tog, k2*, repeat till end of round.
K 1 round
*K2tog, k1*, repeat till end of round.
*K2tog*, repeat till end of round. Cut yarn leaving an 8-inch tail. Weave in all ends.

Big Dipper Motif:

Stitching motifs as I knit is hard for me because I end up pulling the yarn too tightly behind the work. Instead, you’ll be top-stitching the design. It’s super simple to learn. I was a bit disappointed that I didn’t learn this technique sooner as it’s much easier than fair isle or intarsia when it comes to non-repeating motifs. I recommend the tutorial from Wool and the Gang (pronounce “wool” with a British accent and it then it’s a play on words).

Alaska Flag Hat | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.comI made this chart by layering the actual constellation on top of graph paper. Yay science! That being said, you can rough it a little if you feel as though the spacing isn’t quite right. I ended up shifting the front star slightly. This is really a guideline.

I started with the lowest star on the dipper. It really doesn’t matter where you start the motif, but I eyeballed it so that beginning of the round was in the back. Some of the stars I did individually, gently double-knotting the ends as I went. But for the handle of the dipper I was able to continue without breaking the yarn. Triple knot the ends on the inside of the hat and trim.

Giant pom pom:

I used a small book to make the pom pom. Wrap yellow yarn around the book several times till it’s borderline too bulky to handle. Be sure not to wrap it too tightly so that you are able to slide it off the book easily. Gently remove the book. Take a 24-inch piece of yellow yarn and double it over. Tie this around the middle of the loops as tightly as possible. Double knot it. Use fabric scissors to trim pom pom to your liking, but be sure not to trim the long pieces you used to tie it together. Use these long pieces to sew the pom pom to the hat using the darning needle. Tie ends on the inside of the hat and trim.

Alaska Flag Hat | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com
The perfect slouch

And, because I’m feeling patriotic, here’s the Alaska state song depicting our glorious flag.

Alaska’s Flag
Written by Marie Drake
Composed by Elinor Dusenbury

Eight stars of gold on a field of blue –
Alaska’s flag. May it mean to you
The blue of the sea, the evening sky,
The mountain lakes, and the flow’rs nearby;
The gold of the early sourdough’s dreams,
The precious gold of the hills and streams;
The brilliant stars in the northern sky,
The “Bear” – the “Dipper” – and, shining high,
The great North Star with its steady light,
Over land and sea a beacon bright.
Alaska’s flag – to Alaskans dear,
The simple flag of a last frontier.

The Aspen Ascot – a free knitting pattern

Happy Easter! It’s currently snowing here in Anchorage, which makes today’s pattern just perfect.

I was scrolling through some old knitting patterns on my blog and I came across my Chunky Ascot Pattern, which included a terrible Hipstamatic photo (before Instagram existed). I decided it was worth making a new ascot just to update the photo.

This pattern uses chunky yarn or you can knit two strands of worsted weight yarn together. It takes very little yarn, so it’s a great way to use up any leftover high quality fibers. I used Malabrigo and Manos de Uruguay worsted alpaca.

The Aspen Ascot is just right for a chilly spring morning when you don’t need a bulky scarf. The two spade-shaped ends create a lovely bow look.

The pattern isn’t difficult, but it does require thinking outside the box. You’ll use three double-pointed needles for the part where you create the loop. The instructions sound sort of whack, but trust the way it’s written and it should make sense in the end.

The Aspen Ascot | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat. Perfect afternoon project! The Aspen Ascot | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat. Perfect afternoon project!

The Aspen Ascot – a free knitting pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Materials:

One ball of chunky alpaca, or two strands of worsted knitted together

3 size US 10 double-pointed needles

darning needle

Abbreviations:
M1FB — make 1 stitch in the front and 1 stitch in the back of the same stitch, thus increasing the piece by 1 stitch

k2tog— knit two stitches together

Directions:
Cast on 2 stitches. M1FB of the first stitch, K the next stitch.
Continue to M1FB of the first stitch of every row till you have 16 stitches.
K 12 rows in garter stitch. I slip the first stitch of every row to keep the rows neat and even.
Next row: *Knit the first stitch, transfer the second stitch to the third double point needle.* Repeat * to end of row. You should have 8 stitches on each needle.
Starting with the needle that has the working yarn, K1, P1 for 9 rows. Cut yarn, leaving a 6-inch tail.

The Aspen Ascot | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat. Perfect afternoon project!

The Aspen Ascot | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat. Perfect afternoon project!
With the other needle holding 8 stitches, leave a 6-inch tail and K1, P1 for 9 rows, but don’t cut the yarn when done.

Next row: *Knit the first stitch from both the front and back needles together, then knit one from the front and one from the back.* Repeat * till there is 1 stitch on each needle. Knit these two stitches together. You should now have 12 stitches on one needle.

Knit in garter stitch till the work is long enough to go around your neck and touch the loop you just created, about 12 inches.

Next row: *K1, K2tog* Repeat * to end of row. You should now have 8 stitches again. K1, P1 for 9 rows.

Next row: M1FB in each stitch. You should now have 16 stitches.

Knit in garter stitch for 12 rows.

Next row: K1, K2tog, K to end of row. Repeat the last row till there are 3 stitches remaining.

Bind off. Weave in tails. Sew on decorative button to one side of the loop if you desire.

 

Malabrigo Cable Cowl

My local yarn shop started carrying Malabrigo yarn. I have never knitted with Malabrigo before, but I know some knitters who are total snobs about this yarn. They refuse to knit with anything else. I now understand why. The Malabrigo worsted merino is like knitting with clouds. It’s so soft and light between my fingers – an absolute joy to work with. It’s also reasonably priced for the quality. At around $12 per hank, it has so much potential for small projects without breaking the bank.

I really wanted to show of the lustre and quality of the yarn. I decided on a cabled cowl. I don’t have much experience with cables except that they aren’t really difficult; they just take concentration and the ability to keep track of rows.

I wanted to try something beyond a simple cable, but nothing too complicated. I settled on a lovely Ravelry pattern from Auriga’s Knits called the Spikelets Cowl. I recommend this pattern to those who have a little experience with cables but are ready to go to the next level. It was fun to knit, and even more luxurious to wear.

I used one hank of Malabrigo Worsted Merino in Purple Mystery.

Malabrigo cable cowl | Alaska Knit Nat Malabrigo cable cowl | Alaska Knit Nat

Malabrigo cable cowl | Alaska Knit Nat Malabrigo cable cowl | Alaska Knit Nat

Fuzzy Ombre Scarflet — A Free Knitting Pattern

Boy, sending mail to Belgium takes a while! I’m so thrilled to finally be posting this pattern. I had to wait for it to arrive in my friend’s mailbox before I could publish it. Enjoy!

Last summer an old friend of mine got married on the Greek island of Paros, which is known for its brilliantly white  buildings contrasted against the blue Aegean Sea. I wanted to send her a handmade wedding gift that represented the beautiful location of her wedding. Since I have limited artistic talent (I am not a brilliant illustrator as she is), I decided to knit her an ombre scarf. Ombre might still be considered trendy, but I know I’m a little past the height of ombre hype.

I had a difficult time finding yarn that was the right color, so I settled with a “Frozen”-esque ice blue. Elsa wasn’t whom I had in mind when I made this scarf, but I do love the colors anyway.

I wanted to try an unusual stitch pattern instead of doing my basic ribbing or garter stitch. I don’t have a great attention span for stitch patterns that take 14 rows to complete, so I found a lovely pattern that is repeated every 4 rows. This way I can set it down anytime and be certain where I left off. I went with St. John’s Wort Stitch.

Fuzzy Ombre Scarflet | A Free Pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

St. John’s wort is a flowering plant that is used medicinally as a sort of cureall. It’s supposedly good for treating anxiety, depression and cuts. I made this scarf so my friend can feel cozy and safe, so it’s fitting it is named for a healing, cheer-you-up herb.

I hope my friend is able to think of this scarf as a warm hug from her past. We haven’t seen each other in more than 10 years, so I wanted her to have a little reminder of home and of her happy day in Santorini.

Ariadne sketch by Tamar Levi
Ariadne sketch by Tamar Levi

Fuzzy Ombre Scarflet

Fuzzy Ombre Scarflet | A Free Pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

1 hank Heritage Cascade Sock Yarn, color 5630 (or any sport weight yarn in ice blue that is more than 200 yards). I’ll call this color B

1 hank Heritage Cascade Sock Yarn, color 5682 (white). I’ll call this color A.

1 skein Dale Påfugl mohair, color 0010 (or 100 yards of any mohair brand in white). I’ll call this color 1.

1 skein Dale Påfugl mohair, color 6815 (blue). I’ll call this color 2.

US 10 needles

Continue reading Fuzzy Ombre Scarflet — A Free Knitting Pattern

Big, Fluffy Brioche Cowl — A Free Knitting Pattern

Now that the holidays are over and my handmade gifts have been delivered I can start posting some more patterns.

Earlier this winter I became mildly obsessed with the brioche stitch. I found this lovely tutorial and pattern for a cowl and I came up with a simple headband/turban using the same stitch.

I took it one step further with this fluffy, scrumptious stitch and decided to make an oversized cowl using larger needles and a wider width. Not only is it super cozy, but you can stretch part of it over your head for a makeshift hood. You can wear it looped around your neck twice or have it hang loosely. It’s a versatile piece that happens to be trendy.

Big, Fluffy Brioche Cowl | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com

Big Fluffy Brioche Cowl

Materials:

250 grams of heavy worsted yarn such as Lamb’s Pride (I used 2.5 skeins of Loops & Threads Wool to Wash)

Size  US 13 straight needles

Darning needle

Big, Fluffy Brioche Cowl | A Free Knitting Pattern from Alaskaknitnat.com

Continue reading Big, Fluffy Brioche Cowl — A Free Knitting Pattern

Zig-Zag Chevron Hat — A Free Knitting Pattern

I’m not good at fair isle knitting. Usually everything comes out three sizes too small. I pull the yarn too tightly. Or I follow a pattern that slowly incorporates a new color and I’m left with long strands of yarn on the wrong side.

Today I decided to try fair isle again by designing something simple — zig zags. I’ve included the chart and the row-by-row instructions. I recommend knitting the patterned portion in a place with little distraction and possibly without other people. I end up counting out loud “knit one, knit two, knit three, knit two,” etc. so I don’t get lost in the pattern. It’s not difficult, but requires a fair amount of focus.

Zig Zag Chevron Hat | A Free Pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

The advantage to fair isle knitting is you create a thick wrong side to your fabric, which means a warmer hat. Below is a photo of the inside of the hat.

Zig Zag Chevron Hat | A Free Pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Zig Zag Hat

Materials:

size US 8 circular needle

size US 9 circular and double pointed needles

Loops & Threads Wool to Wash, one skein of neon orange (color A) and one electric blue (color B) Any heavy worsted weight wool yarn would work.

darning needle

Continue reading Zig-Zag Chevron Hat — A Free Knitting Pattern

Slouchy Pom Pom Hat – A Free Knitting Pattern

Being a lifelong craftaholic I’m no stranger to the pom pom. Memories of yarn-covered tin can pencil holders and ricrack come to mind.

But lo and behold, again my childhood craft projects are becoming popular again (remember friendship bracelets?) Yes, the pom pom is this season’s biggest accessory trend. So I’ve decided to stay on board the pom pom train and offer up a delicious, fluffy, slouchy hat pattern. It’s got extended ribbing in case you want to fold it up for a thicker brim.

Slouchy Pom Pom Hat | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Slouchy Pompom Hat

What you’ll need:

1 skein each Loops & Threads Wool to Wash in pink and grey or any worsted weight yarn

size US 9 circular and double pointed needles

darning needle

pom pom maker or large serving fork

stitch marker

Continue reading Slouchy Pom Pom Hat – A Free Knitting Pattern

Sports Team Hat — A Free Knitting Pattern

When you’re a knitter, there are only so many knitted gifts you can give your relatives. I’ve made hats, cowls, mittens, hats, hats and hats. My family will never tell me “Enough with the hats already!” so I’m of course knitting them all hats this year for Christmas.

My nephew is a Dodgers fan. For his birthday I got him a Dodgers wallet, felt banner and classic metal waste basket. Those gifts went over well (He’s 14 and he gave me an enthusiastic “thank you,” which is a lot coming from a teenager). So I figured he wouldn’t mind a knitted cap in Dodgers colors.

This hat is mostly made from Plymouth Yarn’s DK Merino Superwash, although the grey is Lion Brand. Merino wool is soft and not itchy in the slightest. It’s also warmer than synthetic. Feel free to substitute acrylic yarn if you are trying to save money.

So get those team colors and knit on! You might get an honest “thank you” from your teenage nephew.

Click here if you’d like to make this type of hat for a baby.

Sports Team Hat | A free knitting pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Sports Team Knitted Cap

Fits an average size head (my husband, who was the only model I had around, has a gigantic head so the hat is a little stretched out in the photos)

Skill level: easy/beginner

Materials:

1 skein each of Plymouth DK Merino Superwash in Cobalt (Color A), Natural (Color B), and Light Gray (Color C)

Size US 8 circular and double pointed needles

Darning needle

Sports Team Hat | A free knitting pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Abbreviations:

K1, P1 = knit 1, purl 1 ribbing

k2tog = knit two stitches together

Directions:

With your circular needle cast on 80 stitches using color A. Join stitches to form a circle, being careful not to twist the stitches. Place a marker where you joined the yarn. K1, P1 in the round for 5 rounds or until the ribbing is to your liking.

Start knitting all rounds. Knit 15 more rounds with color A. Cut yarn leaving an 8-inch tail. Begin knitting with color B. Knit 4 rounds. Cut yarn leaving an 8-inch tail. Start knitting with color C. Knit for 10 rounds. Cut yarn leaving an 8-inch tail. Knit 4 rounds with color B. Cut yarn. Switch to color A and knit approximately 8 rounds or until the hat is about 5.5-6 inches tall from the edge.

Begin decreasing as follows:

*k2tog, k6* Repeat * till end of round
K one round
*K2tog, k5*, repeat * till end of round
K one round
*K2tog, k4*, repeat * till end of round (switch to double points here)
K one round
*K2tog, k 3*, repeat * till end of round
K one round
*K2tog, k 2*, repeat * till end of round
K one round
*K2tog, k1*, repeat * till end of round
*K2tog*, repeat * till end of round.
Cut yarn leaving an 8-inch tail. Using a darning needle, weave in all ends. I like to tie the striped yarn ends together somewhat loosely before weaving them in. I have no official technique for this, so do what seems best for you. Just be sure not to tie them together too tightly as that will cause the stitches to look uneven on the outside of the hat.Sports Team Hat | A free knitting pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Sports Team Hat | A free knitting pattern from Alaska Knit Nat

Alaska Knit Nat turns 4 — TBT Harlequin Cowl Pattern

I was just sitting down to my computer to write a post today and I started to think about when I first started my blog. I logged into my old Blogger account and scrolled back to “Posting No. 1.” Turns out it was four years ago today!

I started this blog as a means to keep track of all the stuff I make. I never remember how many stitches I cast on here or how many tablespoons of soy sauce I mixed in there, so I began to keep an online record. It’s still a useful tool to me and I reference my own patterns and recipes all the time.

I soon realized that others might like what I was cataloging. That’s when I started Alaska Knit Nat’s Facebook page.

My first big break was when BuzzFeed featured my DIY T-shirt onesie tutorial. Then Pinterest was invented. Lots of folks find my blog via Pinterest.

But it wasn’t until I was contacted by AllFreeKnitting.com that I really started to see interaction on the blog. In one day alone last winter I got more than 7,000 visits to my Simple Striped Baby Blanket pattern. That’s pretty exhilarating! And totally out of the ordinary. I typically get about 400-800 visits a day.

It makes me happy to know that people enjoy the projects and recipes I share.

So I thought as a throwback Thursday I would share my very first post, which was a pattern for a lovely cowl.

Thanks to all my fans and supporters. I truly enjoy your feedback and interactions.

Posting No. 1

So I’ve been tinkering with the idea of starting a blog and I think it’s high time I do. It’s mainly for my own benefit — I make so much stuff I can’t keep track of it all. In addition to knitting (hence the Knit Nat title), I cook, sew and repurpose things. This blog is a catalog of all things Craft.

I’ve wanted to knit myself a cowl for the winter and I finally used my $25 credit at the Quilt Tree to purchase the most beautiful yarns for it. I did a lot of Ravelry research yesterday and found a pattern that was simple enough. It’s an easy lace pattern.
Just how luscious is this yarn?

I shall call this project the Harlequin Cowl.
Ingredients:
24-inch size 9 circular needle
1 skien of Cascade Lana Bambu color 11 &  2 skeins of Ironstone Sunset color
1 stitch marker

Cast on 104 stitches. Place marker and join yarn, being careful not to twist the work.
k4, p4 for three rows (or however wide you want the trim to be)
row 1:*k2tog, yo*, repeat ** till end of row (don’t forget that the last stitch of the row is a yarn over.)
row 2 and all even rows: knit

Repeat this pattern till project is wide enough to your liking

k4, p4 for three rows and bind off.

Here’s what I have so far:

###
It took me a long time to finish the cowl, so I didn’t post the finished product until later. Here’s what it came out like:
Knitted Harlequin Cowl | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat Knitted Harlequin Cowl | A free pattern from Alaska Knit Nat
xoxo,
Natasha