How to Knit and Felt a Coffee Cosy : A Very Easy Tutorial
This project is a great introduction to knitting in the round with 4 needles. A skill that you will need to master if you ever want to knit socks or mittens. The materials you will need are shown in that first picture in the wooden bowl. They are a ball of Noro Kureyon wool ( I told you it was one of my favorites) , size 6 or 7 mm set of 4 needles , a yarn needle and access to a washing machine. With one ball of wool you will be able to make a least 4 cosies. I use this wool for so many small projects that when ever the local wool shops have a sale I stock up on single balls of as many colors as I can. I didn't take many photographs of the initial steps since I think you can find an explanation of casting on with four needles in any knitting book or on line. It really isn't any different than casting on with 2 needles except that you divide your stitches to spread them out and end up with a triangle when you join them.
1. Find yourself a comfortable place to knit and cast on 27 stitches divided evenly on three needles. That is 9 stitches on each needle.
2. Make sure there is no twist in your triangle and start knitting on the first needle you cast on making sure to pull the first stitch and every stitch at the beginning of a needle a little tighter than the others so as not to leave gaps. Keep knitting on each of the needles round and round until your knitting measures about 4 inches. When I was making the first sample I had a yarnstorm moment when I noticed that the chair I was sitting in and the flowers around me all matched the wool I was knitting with.
3. Cast off loosely. Cut the yarn leaving a 4 inch tail that you will thread on the yarn needle . Weave the end in and out of the yarn. Sew in the casting on end as well. You don't need to be really neat about it because the felting part will hide it anyway.
4. If you are planning to make more than one I would do that now so that you can felt them all together and thus conserve water and energy.
5. These were run through 2 warm cycles of my washing machine with a very small amount of laundry soap. Depending on the temperature of your water and the gage of your knitting you may need another cycle to achieve the correct size.
6. I don't recommend putting them in the dryer. I find that they don't hold the correct shape and pucker at the top and bottom if you do this. I prefer to dry them on an object of similar diameter as a coffee cup. You can use the real thing, or another cup or glass of similar diameter. Maybe you can find a thick piece of wood in your yard and make a drying caterpillar rack.
7. When they are dry , fold then and then lay them under something heavy to flatten them so they will fit nicely into your purse or shopping bag. My felted rock did the trick.
I noticed they were an exact fit over these soy candles in biodegradable pots I bought on sale last month. While I was taking pictures of these Arwen discovered the little balls of yarn on the table and well you can see what happened.
These are beautiful just as they are or you can embellish them with vintage buttons, applique , embroidery or they make great little canvases for needle felting if you place a sponge inside first. Deborah made a set of these with her friends initials needle felted on for christmas gifts one year and included gift cards for their favorite coffee shop. You can be as creative as you want to be.
Please don't forget to vote on the Indie Fixx second anniversary craft off. I have two items in the finalists ( #2 and #3) . The next knitting tutorial will be simple knitted trees and the samples I knit up are very seasonal ( at least of this side of the planet).