Now this is a really easy and quick gift to make for your friends, it took me just over three hours to knit and another hour to Swiss darn and sew up. To add a little more interest we will also be using a twisted rib, which sounds so much more complicated than it really is and a moss/seed stitch frame to emphasise your Swiss darning. You can vary the darning to create a snowflake, initials or any other pattern that takes your fancy... I have used a heart cos I love my hot water bottle in the Winter!
You will need:
3 balls of Sirdar Big Softie or equivalent super chunky yarn
1 Pair of Size 10mm needles (yay, these are big chaps and will knit up your work really quickly!)
A length of contrasting yarn of the same weight
A bodkin needle with a large eye
A metre/yard of velvet ribbon
K = Knit
P = Purl
Cast on 52 stitches (this will make a cover for an average adult hot water bottle)
1st row: (wrong side) P2, K2 until the end of the row.
2nd row: P2, twist the rib - Knit into the front of the second stitch on your left hand needle then knit into the front of the first stitch on the left hand needle, slip both stitches off the left hand needle. Repeat these four stitches until the end of the row.
Repeat these two rows 3 times (you will now have 8 rows)
Row 9: (wrong side) P52.
Row 10: K52
Row 11: P52
Row 12: K52
Row 13: P52
Row 14: K4 - P1, K1 9 times (18 stitches), K30 - (52 stitches)
Row 15: P30, K1, P1 9 times (18 stitches), P4
Row 16: K4 - P1, K1 9 times (18 stitches), K30 - (52 stitches)
Row 17: P30, K1, P1 9 times (18 stitches), P4
Row 18: K4, P1, K1 2 times, K10, P1, K1 2 times, K30
Row 19: P30, K1, P1 2 times, P10, K1, P1 2 times, P4
Repeat these two rows (row 16 and 17) 6 more times
Row 32: K4 - P1, K1 9 times (18 stitches), K30 - (52 stitches)
Row 33: P30, K1, P1 9 times (18 stitches), P4
Row 34: K4 - P1, K1 9 times (18 stitches), K30 - (52 stitches)
Row 35: P30, K1, P1 9 times (18 stitches), P4
Row 36: K52
Row 37: P52
Repeat these 2 rows 3 more times
Cast off 52 stitches.
Press your work through a damp cloth from the reverse side, this will bring up the texture of your moss/seed stitch frame.
Swiss darn your design, you can do this by using squared paper or an excel spreadsheet to map out your design.
The darning is really easy, weave your end into the wrong side, bring the needle up through the centre of the knitted stitch.
Bring the thread up on the left hand side and take it back into the middle of the stitch which will cover your original knitted stitch.
Finally take it under tow threads and bring it up in the centre of your next knitted stitch and start the process all over again.
For the heart, darn one stitch in the centre at the bottom of the square, then for row 2 and 3, darn three stitches keeping your first stitch in the centre. Row 4, increase by a stitch on each side so that there are now five stitches, row 5 and 6, increase one stitch on each side so that there are now seven stitches on each row. On row 7, it is the final increase to nine stitches. On row 8, darn four stitches, miss one and darn four again. Row 9 is the final row, miss one stitch, darn two, miss three stitches, darn two and weave in your ends on the reverse side.
Fold the knitting in half widthwise with right sides facing and sew along the base of the cover, then sew up the side of the cover. Take your velvet ribbon and thread it through your crewel needle, run the thread under the twisted rib and across the purl stitches and under the twisted rib. Pull the ribbon taut and then tie the ribbon in a bow, and snuggle up with your hottie.
Now, go on over to Wendy's Handmade Monday... and don't forget to leave her your congrats as she has had over 100.000 hits... isn't that an amazing number?