Free Knitting Pattern - Wrist Warmers: Róisín

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Róisín is an Irish name meaning “little rose.” I think the cable structure on this wristlet is reminiscent of a trellis that might be found a quaint old Irish rose garden. The cable pattern is very basic and is an excellent first cable project. I chose an alpaca fleece for the project fiber. The cable pattern supports the inherently inelastic alpaca fiber in a soft yet stable fabric form and the buttons make the wristers easily adjustable. As the wrist/ankle warmers are worn, the alpaca will bloom to a lovely softness, but will maintain the deep cable pattern.
Skill level: Easy

Step 1

To fit 7" [17.8 cm] wrist circumference.
Finished Measurements:
- Width: 3 1/2" [9 cm]
- Length: 10" [25.5 cm] or desired length

- 3-ply alpaca yarn: 80 yd [73 m]/3 oz [85 g]
- Singles alpaca yarn: approx 1 yd [1 m] for sewing buttons
- Commercial yarn equivalent for main yarn: worsted weight
- Size 7 [4.5 mm] knitting needles or size needed to obtain gauge
- Cable needle
- Tapestry needle
-Set of 4 buttons with approx 1" [2.5 cm] diameter
- 16 sts and 28 rows = 4" [10 cm] in ST st.
- One 16-st, 6 row cable panel = 2 1/2 × 1 1/4" [3.2 × 6.5 cm].
Adjust needle size as necessary to obtain correct gauge.
Special Abbreviations:
- 2 over 2 Left Cross (2/2 LC): Slip next 2 sts to a cable needle and hold the cable needle to the front of the work without knitting the sts. Knit the next 2 sts on the working needle, and then knit the 2 sts held on the cable needle. This turns the cable to the left.
- 2 over 2 Right Cross (2/2 RC): Slip next 2 sts to a cable
needle and hold the cable needle to the back of the work without knitting the sts. Knit the next 2 sts on the working needle, and then knit the 2 sts held on the cable needle. This turns the cable to the right.

Step 2

Pattern stitch:
Cable panel (16-ST PANEL)
A chart is provided for those preferring to work from charts.
- Row 1 (RS): *K2, 2/2 LC, k4, 2/2 RC, k2.
- Row 2: K2, p12, k2.
- Row 3: K4, 2/2 LC, 2/2 RC, k4.
- Row 4: K2, p12, k2.
- Row 5: K6, 2/2 RC, k6.
- Row 6: K2, p12, k2.
Rep Rows 1–6 for pat, stopping the pat after row 4 before beginning the button band.

Step 3

Instructions for button band:
Using long-tail method, CO 16 sts.
- Rows 1–3: Knit.
- Rows 4, 6, and 8: K2, p12, k2.
- Rows 5 and 7: Knit.
Work 6-row Cable Panel 6 times or until piece measures 2" [5 cm] shorter than desired size, then work Rows 1–5 once more.

Step 4

Buttonhole band:
The first row creates 2 buttonholes. The 1-stitch decrease sets up even spacing for the buttonholes on the band and reduces the flare created by the previous cable pattern.
- Buttonhole row 1 (RS): K3, BO 2, k3 (including st on RH needle following BO), k2tog, BO 2, k4—11 sts.
- Buttonhole row 2: K2, p2; using backward-loop method, CO 2 sts; p4, CO 2, p1, k2—15 sts.
Next 3 rows: Knit. BO kwise.

Step 5

Cut yarn, leaving a tail of about 6" [15 cm]. Weave in all tail ends on WS and cut off remaining yarn close to fabric.

Step 6

Details from Róisín Spinning and Dyeing: Spin:
- Fiber type: Alpaca (fleece blanket from Amari, a yearling Huacaya alpaca)
- Fiber source: Tier One Alpacas
- Fiber preparation: Scoured, dyed, and carded fleece with fine, cotton carders prior to spinning
- Weight after preparation: 4.6 oz [130 g]
- Wheel and whorl used (singles and ply): Lendrum wheel; singles whorl: 8:1, ply whorl: 6:1
- Spin method: Woolen, from rolags
Singles details:
- spin direction: Z (wpi: 20)
- Ply details: number of plies: 3, spin direction: S, tpi: 3, wpi: 8 and twist angle: 40° (Spun at a higher twist angle than would typically be used for alpaca’s inherent qualities. The higher twist angle created a nice defined cable stitch that’s appropriate for the fabric of this project.)
- Final yarn weight / length: 4.6 oz [130 g] / 100 yd [91 m]
- Finishing techniques: Soaked in warm, soapy water; rinse with vinegar and clear water; spun out excess water in washing machine. Before hanging with light tension to dry, I slapped the yarn against a hard edge to enhance the fiber bloom and slightly full it.
- After the Spin Workshop reflections: The 3-ply yarn was perfect for this cable pattern. The ply count allowed for stitch definition yet maintained a soft hand that will become even softer with wear.

Step 7

Dye directions:
- Dye type/brand: Cochineal, natural dye (see pages 93–95 for dye details and process)
- Color: Natural rose tone
- Quantity of Dye: 40 g [1.4 oz] dried cochineal bugs
- Dye process followed: Kettle immersion method; with 3½-hour cochineal soak, followed by a boiling time of 15 minutes to extract dye liquor. Yarn was cooked in the strained dye liquor for 1½ hours.
- After the Dye Workshop reflections: The fleece was placed inside lingerie bags for the dye process, and that was critical to keep the very fine locks in order. The cochineal dyed the fiber a lovely wild rose color that was perfect for the theme of the pattern.
- See the Natural Dye Workshop, page 92, and Acid Dye Workshop, page 100, to follow the possible dye methods for alpaca (protein) fiber.

Step 8

Project Note :
If you use cochineal to dye your fiber as I did for this project, you can create matching buttons by dyeing unfinished wooden buttons in a small amount of the remaining cochineal dye bath. To do this, soak the buttons in the cooled dye bath for at least 4 hours, let them dry, and spray them with a coat or two of matte lacquer. (Buttons and spray lacquer may be found at craft stores.)
Pattern Note:
The length of the wrist/ankle warmer can be adjusted by working more or fewer cable pattern repeats. If you want a wider piece, cast on more stitches and work more edge stitches in garter stitch.

Step 9

This knitting pattern is excerpted with permission from "Yarn Works: How to Spin, Dye, and Knit Your Own Yarn" by W.J. Johnson and published by Creative Publishing international.

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