Sunday, February 6, 2011

From Here to There

How to Knit a Flower

You've all seen those beautiful flowers on knitted hats and headbands.  They're typically crocheted, but crocheting is not in my skill set.  So I've figured out how to get the same or a very similar flower by knitting it and thought I'd share it with you here.

You'll need yarn, circular knitting needles, stitch markers, a darning needle, needle and thread, and a crochet hook.

First, cast on 60 stitches very loosely.  Purl one row, placing a stitch marker after every twelfth stitch.  Row 2, knit eleven stitches and slip the twelfth stitch all the way around.  Knit rows 3 through 7 in the same way (knit 11, slip one).  You'll have a total of 8 rows.  Cut the yarn leaving a tail 18 inches long or longer.  Thread this tail through the darning needle.

Now comes the fun part...  You're going to pull that tail through all 60 stitches and that slipped stitch is going to wrap around the knitting to create the indentations between the petals of the flower.  I tried to think of how to write this part of the instructions and decided that it was never going to make any sense.  So I made a video to show you how to do it!

When you wrap the 5th slip around, pull the tail through stitch number one to secure it.  Once you're all the way around, you'll have a large circle.  Make sure the knitting isn't twisted and hold it down lightly on a flat surface while you pull the tail tighter through the stitches.  This will draw them all in, giving you a more reasonably sized center of the flower.  Once you're satisfied with the center size, sew a knot to stabilize it.

Next, you need to block the flower so that it lays flat and retains the shape you want it to have.  I pin it down flat on my ironing board.  When you're happy with the look, with your iron on full steam, hold the iron about an inch above the flower and steam it for no more than five seconds!  You don't want to melt the yarn or flatten it!  It should feel warm and a little moist at this point.  Allow it to cool and dry in this position before you unpin it.

Once it's cool, position it on the piece where you want it and sew it all the way around the center with the tail.  Sew in a knot, thread through to the back, sew another knot, weave the tail through the knitting and cut off the excess.  Go back to the front and thread the beginning tail through your darning needle, weave it through the edge of the flower and to the back.  Cut off the excess of this piece.

You finished layer one - congratulations!  The top layer is made exactly the same way except that you cast on 55 stitches, purl one row putting markers every 11 stitches, then knit 10/slip 1 for six rows, for a total of 7 rows.  Position the second layer on top of the first and sew down around the center, just as before.  

To make the center of the flower, catch a stitch with your crochet hook and pull the tail through for crochet stitch one.  Crochet a chain of 7 to 10 stitches, then put the wrong end of the crochet hook through the knitting so that you can pull it to the back.  Pick up a stitch from the base knitting and crochet one stitch, then pull the tail through that stitch through the crochet to create a knot and secure the crocheted chain.  Weave the tail through the work to hide it and cut off the excess.  Boy I hope that makes sense!

So that the finished flower petals don't flop around, I take a single loose stitch with needle and thread to tack each one in place.  You can also use hot glue to accomplish this.

1 comment:

  1. Sandi, thanks for sharing your method, yes it does make sense to me, I'm wondering how these flowers would felt? Another project for my list of things to try!