Simplified multi-color knitting with color charts. Stitch sequences numbered. Each row knitted across and purled back in the same colors.
Knit your own choice of name across cuff in lieu of words “Merry Christmas” if you wish.
Large size approximately 21 inches top-to-toe.
Knit across and purl back each row before starting next row. Use size NUMBER THREE needles and regular 4-ply knitting worsted weight yarn. Knitting tension should be tight enough to produce about 8 stitches per inch. If you do not obtain this gauge, then change to larger or smaller needles as your particular knitting tension requires. The size needle does not matter as long as the stitch gauge attained is correct. The above applies where it is desired to make a large size stocking about 21 inches long and 5½ inches wide at the top. If a larger or smaller stocking is desired use larger or smaller needles to obtain the gauge desired. Knitting 7 stitches per inch will produce a larger 23-inch stocking; 9 stitches per inch will make the stocking only about 19 inches long.
Use Angora yarn for Santa's beard and the fur on his cap, if you wish (about 20 yds. required). The 100% French Angora is recommended since it is the fuzziest. You may wish to try other special effects such as carrying a thread of tinsel with the yarn when knitting the tree, or the white part of the cuff; sewing sequins on the tree when completed, etc.
(Basic instructions for beginners on the manner of casting-on, how to knit, purl, decrease, etc., cannot readily be given here. These details are usually obtainable free, from your yarn shop.)
MATERIALS—(Approximate yarn quantities per stocking.) IMPORTANT—Use needles and yarn in sizes as indicated in order to achieve the proper size stocking which, per these directions, will be about 13 inches long above top of heel, with foot 10½ inches long. Use 4-ply Germantown type yarn. 2 oz. red, 1 oz. green, 1 oz. white, 6 yds. beige or ruddy pink for Santa's face. Use a pair of single pointed No. 3 needles for the pattern. 1 set of No. 3 double pointed needles will be necessary for the foot.
Bobbins—In doing the pattern design it is well to carry your yarn in small quantities of each color on bobbins which dangle conveniently clear of your work avoiding entanglement. Separate bobbins are then used for separated sequences of stitches in various colors. Separate bobbins are not necessary where the interruption of a color sequence involves carrying the yarn over only a few stitches (such as up to about 5 stitches). This practice is tolerated particularly in this pattern which does not involve actual wearing-comfort, since the stocking is ornamental only. For example—in knitting the letters MERRY CHRISTMAS (or your own choice of name if you wish— see below) one bobbin of green can be used for all stitches in the word MERRY. Simply carry the green thread across the intervening white areas. The gap between the Y and the C is 8 stitches wide however, so use a second bobbin of green for the letters in CHRISTMAS. Similarly knit from a single bobbin or ball of white for the whole background of this area, carrying the threads across intervening greens.
Upon reaching row 14 you will need 7 bobbins of red yarn for the 7 separated sequences of red stitches. For the 6 separated sequences of white it is not necessary to use bobbins. As you complete each sequence of 7 white stitches in this row (No. 14) simply break the thread to leave about an 18-inch piece dangling on the work. This will be enough to complete the few stitches of white in the area, to be used in the same row No. 14 when purling back, and in rows 15, 16, and 17. This small length will not require winding on a bobbin.
LEG PATTERN—This part of the stocking is knitted in a flat piece, to be folded and sewed together up the back when completed. First cast on 90 stitches of white and purl back to beginning. Now start the pattern, each row of which consists of knitting across and purling back. The first 4 rows are in the plain color and pattern proper begins on row 5 where the stitch sequence is 8 white, 1 green, 3 white, 1 green, 2 white, etc. to form the tops of the letters MERRY CHRISTMAS. These numbers are indicated on the graph to save counting squares. IF YOU WISH you may substitute other words for these, such as using an individual's name or perhaps the year designation—as, "JOHN—1964" for example. Simply use a bright crayon or pen to fill in the squares to form the letters you wish. The method of forming letters not now shown on the pattern is indicated at the bottom of the sheet. Of course you will need to count and renumber the stitch sequences in this area, if you substitute other letters.
In changing colors always twist yarns around each other once to avoid leaving a hole. After knitting row number 5 in the colors indicated, turn and purl back this same row using the same colors in the same places. Continue knitting the successive rows in this manner, using the color sequences indicated on the graph.
Beginning at row No. 19 and every 5th row thereafter, you will note that the total number of stitches decreases by 2. This is done by knitting two stitches together at the beginning of the row, and again at the end of the row, for these rows (Nos. 19, 24, 29, etc.) only. Decrease on knitted part of row only, not when purling. After the tree pattern and Santa Claus face are completed knit in plain red from one ball of yarn, the work then being reduced to 72 stitches in length. Knit 4 complete rows plain to complete leg pattern area as shown. At this point the work separates to knit the heel before proceeding down the instep.
Divide the 72 stitches, taking 18 off each end and place on one double pointed No. 3 sock needle for the heel. In so doing the leg of the stocking is folded into position for sewing up the back later. Leave the 36 center stitches on one needle or a stitch holder, and discontinue work thereon while doing the heel.
HEEL—Using the 36 stitches on the heel needle, knit a row and purl back in successive rows as before, for 3 inches. On the last purl row, purl 19 stitches, then purl 2 together, purl 1 and turn work. Knit 6, knit 2 together, knit 1 turn work. Purl back 8, purl 2 together, purl 1, turn. Knit 10 … etc. Continue in this manner making rounded bottom of heel until all stitches are used, work then being all on one needle across bottom of heel. Now pick up stitches along the forward edges of the heel thus knitted, and add to the work in progress. About 28 or 30 stitches should be picked up on each side of the 3-inch long heel, and all of these heel stitches should be evenly divided on 2 needles.
INSTEP—At this point the entire stocking is on three needles, consisting of the instep needle with 36 center stitches (which must be kept separate), and the two underfoot needles on which the stitches along the edge of the finished heel are evenly divided. Now use a 4th working needle and knit the foot round and round as with a plain sock, and at the same time form the triangular gusset which widens the ankle, by decreasing 1 stitch at the forward point of each underfoot needle ON EVERY ROW, until only 18 stitches remain on each underfoot needle. You will probably decrease 20 or 22 times depending on whether 28 or 30 stitches were picked up along the heel edge. Now continue knitting the foot without further decreasing until the foot is 8 inches long measured from the back of the heel.
TOE—Now start decreasing to shape toe, as follows: Decrease 4 stitches on the next row, these being the end stitches on the instep needle, and the stitches next to these, one on each underfoot needle. Knit 4 rows plain then 1 row decreasing 4 stitches as before, 3 rows plain, 1 decreasing, 3 plain, 1 decreasing, 2 plain, 1 decreasing, 2 plain, 1 decreasing, 1 plain, 1 decreasing, then decrease every row until only 16 stitches remain (8 on instep needle and 4 on each underfoot needle. The shift to white yarn for the toe may be carried out at any point, or the entire foot may be made red. We suggest shifting to the white at the point of reaching the above sequence of 2 rows plain, 1 decreasing … etc., to achieve the effect indicated in the stocking illustrated. Weave toe as follows:
Place yarn in a tapestry needle and, with the yarn coming from the back of the knitting needle, put it in first stitch of front (instep) needle as if to knit and slip it off. Then put it in the next stitch of front needle as if to purl and leave it on. Go to back (underfoot) needle and insert as if to purl and take it off then to next stitch of back needle as if to knit and leave it on. Repeat thus to the end of the 8 stitches on each needle.
FINISH—Sew stocking up the back, using corresponding color of yarn and tapestry needle. Finish inside of stocking by weaving any thread ends into nearby seams, trimming ends, etc. Block stocking by dampening and laying out on a flat surface to dry (or steam press).
Attach jingle bells at white points of cuff of stocking by a loop of single crochet of about eight stitches, or they can be sewed on stocking direct. You may substitute tassels or some other type of decoration if you wish. Use angora yarn for Santa's beard for a real amusing effect.
Each square equals one stitch, knitted and/or purled. Sequences of stitches in particular colors to form a pattern are shown by numbers on the specific pattern graphs. This saves counting squares.
The number of rows and number of stitches in each depend on the symmetry of the pattern design, also on the size and shape of the stocking desired. Size and dimensions are indicated in each particular pattern.
Each row is knitted and purled back in the same color, except where otherwise indicated to form finer detail in the design. In which case the purled-back row may vary somewhat as shown in the pattern.
Heel, bottom of foot, and toe are knitted in the manner of a plain stocking or sock. Where the instep is a plain color, and the same color as the foot this part of the stocking may be knitted round and round at in a plain sock.
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