Monday, January 11, 2010

Metamorphosis part II - Butterfly Knitting Pattern

I don't remember what inspired me to create a caterpillar and a butterfly, but I present to you the second part of my Metamorphosis knitting pattern series.


Materials
  • Knitting Needles: 4 dpn Size 1, (2.5 mm)
  • Crochet Hook (for Antennae): B/1 - 2.25 mm
  • Yarn: Remnants of KnitPicks Palette Yarn (Fingering weight) hand dyed in a pink/purple/blue colorway (Wings) and Blue Note Heather (Body).
  • Gauge: Not important for the completed project, but you want to knit tight enough that you will not see the polyester stuffing.
  • Misc: Toy stuffing, yarn needle.
  • Finished Size: 4" wingspan. (The entire creature is smaller than 4"x4" square)
The wings are not constructed to be as delicate as the wing of a butterfly. They are made in the round, so the two sizes give them some weight without requiring stuffing of any kind.

Lower Wings (make 2)
Since these wings have a lot of increases and decreases, I've made a schematic (see right) to help you visualize the wing construction. This scheme shows one half of the wing.

Row 1: Cast on 8 sts. Join in the round and K 1 round even.
Row 2: Kfb, K2, Kfb, Kfb, K2, Kfb (12 sts)
Row 3: K1 round even
Row 4: Kfb, K4, Kfb, Kfb, K4, Kfb (16 sts)
Row 5: K1 round even
Round 6: Kfb, K6, Kfb, Kfb, K6, Kfb (20 sts)
Row 7: kfb, K8, kfb, kfb, K8, kfb (24 sts)
Row 8: kfb, K10, kfb, kfb, K10, kfb (28 sts)
Row 9: K 1 round even
Row 10: kfb, K12, kfb, kfb, K12, kfb (32 sts)
Rows 11-13: K across
Row 14: SSk, K12, K2tog, ssk, K12, K2tog (28 sts)
Row 15-16: K across
Row 17: SSK, K10, K2tog, SSK, K10, K2tog (24 sts)
Row 18: K across
Row 19: SSK, K8, K2tog, SSK, K8, K2tog (20 sts)
Row 20: SSK, K6, K2tog, SSK, K6, K2tog (16 sts)
Divide the stitches so there are 8 sts on one needle, and 8 on the other and do a three needle bindoff. Weave in all loose ends.


This picture demonstrates the power of charting when you want to design a flat shape. When I placed this upper wing on my computer screen, the contours of the knit wing matched the excel doodles.

Upper Wings (make 2)
Since these wings have a lot of increases and decreases, I've made a schematic (see right) to help you visualize the wing construction. This scheme shows one half of the wing.

Row 1: Cast on 8 sts. Join in the round and K 1 round even.
Row 2: Kfb, K2, Kfb, Kfb, K2, Kfb (12 sts)
Row 3: K1 round even
Row 4: Kfb, K4, Kfb, Kfb, K4, Kfb (16 sts)
Row 5: K1 round even
Round 6: Kfb, K6, Kfb, Kfb, K6, Kfb (20 sts)
Row 7: kfb, K8, kfb, kfb, K8, kfb (24 sts)
Row 8: kfb, K10, kfb, kfb, K10, kfb (28 sts)
Row 9: K 1 round even
Row 10: kfb, K12, kfb, kfb, K12, kfb (32 sts)
Row 11: K 1 round even
Row 12: K15, Kfb, Kfb, K15 (34 sts)
Row 13: k 1 round even
Row 14: SSk, K14, Kfb, kfb, K14, K2tog (34 sts)
Row 15: k 1 round even
Row 16: K16, Kfb, Kfb, K16 (36 sts)
Row 17: ssk, K32, K2tog (34 sts)
Row 18: K16, Kfb, Kfb, K16 (36 sts)
Row 19: ssk, K32, K2tog (34 sts)
Row 20: K16, Kfb, Kfb, K16 (36 sts)
Row 21: ssk, ssk, K28, K2tog, k2tog (32 sts)
Row 22: ssk, ssk, K24, k2tog, k2tog (28 sts)
Row 23: ssk, ssk, K9, kfb, kfb, K9, k2tog, k2tog. (26 sts)
Row 24: ssk, ssk, K18, k2tog, k2tog (22 sts)
Row 25: ssk, ssk, K14, k2tog, k2tog (18 sts)
Row 26: ssk, ssk, ssk, K1, K2tog, ssk, K1, K2tog, K2tog, K2tog (10 sts)
Row 27: ssk, K1, K2tog, ssk, K1, k2tog, (6 sts)
Divide the stitches so there are 3 sts on one needle, and 3 on the other and do a three needle bindoff. Weave in all loose ends.
NOTE: this wing may require slight blocking to remain in it's shape.


The upper and lower wings before I finished weaving in the ends


Wing arrangement for my butterfly

Body
Row 1: Cast on 6 sts in MC, join and knit 1 row (This is the tip of the head)
Row 2: kfb across - 12 sts
Row 3: K across
Row 4: Kfb across - 24 sts
Rows 5-8: K across
Row 9: *K2, K2tog* across - 18 sts
Row 10: K across
Row 11: K2tog across - 9 sts
Row 12: K across
Row 13: Kfb across - 18 sts
Row 14: K across
Row 15: *K2, Kfb* across - 24 sts
Rows 16-38: K across (this is 23 rows.)
Row 39: *K2, K2tog* across - 18 sts
Row 40: K across
Row 41: K2tog across - 9 sts
Row 42: K across
Stuff the butterfly body. The end of a pen or pencil may be helpful for this step.
Row 42: *K1 K2tog* across - 6 sts
Pull yarn through the remaining 6 sts, weave in loose ends.



Antennae:
Cut a 12 inch piece of yarn (same as body color). With the yarn needle, insert into the butterfly head so the ends come out where you would like the antennae to be placed. Using the B crochet hook, crochet a chain (using a knit stitch for the first loop) until you get the desired length for an antenna (approximately 0.5 inch). Draw the free end of the yarn through the last loop, pull tightly, and cut the yarn.


Placement of the antennae with the yarn needle (left) and how the yarn is placed before crocheting (right)


The antennae before (left) and after (right) the ends are snipped.

Finishing

Arrange upper wings over lower wings until you get the wing shape you desire. Stitch the cast on tips (where the wings will be attached to the body) together and attach to the body. If the antennae are too curled for your preference, use some water to help straighten them out.


Enjoy!


Let your butterfly Fly!


Don't forget to check out Metamorphosis part I, the caterpillar Knitting Pattern.

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Abbreviations Used in this pattern:
Kfb - increase by knitting into the front and back of a single stitch.
K - knit
P - purl
SSK - decrease by slipping two stitches then knitting them together. Alternatively, you could slip one stitch, knit one stitch and pass slipped stitch over.
K2tog - decrease by knitting two stitches together.


This this pattern was created by ChemKnits for your personal or charity use. This pattern is not to be replicated, sold or redistributed without permission from ChemKnits. © 2010 ChemKnits

19 comments:

  1. Very cute! I bet my daughters would love this!

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  2. Hi Rebecca this is so fun can't wait to make the pair! My little girl will love them! Thanks again Melly from http://www.renewedcreations.blogspot.com

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  3. Thank you, I have been looking for a butterfly pattern for my daughter to decorate her babies room, she is having a little girl in 4 weeks, so I better get knitting.
    Janet D Australia

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  4. I'd love to knit this but can't understand the pattern! What is 'knit in the round'??

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  5. Join to knit in the round means that you're knitting a circular rather than flat piece. This project is small enough that you would not want to use round (or circular) needles, you would use 4-5 double pointed needles to create the "tube".

    For a tutorial on knitting in the round, check out this website:
    http://www.stitchdiva.com/custom.aspx?id=105

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  6. I just used this pattern to make a gift for my cousin's new baby, and I love it!(Hopefully she will too, lol) I used a fluffy eyelash novelty yarn, so I didn't need to stuff it, it kind of stuffed itself. :P
    Thanks so much!

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  7. I was going to do this pattern but I am just a beginner and I don't understand why you need to have double pointed needles. I was doing fine until I noticed the 'knit in the round' crap.

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  8. The body is knit in the round so you can stuff the body without having to make a seam up the side. You could knit the body, converting the K's to P's on every other round, and then stitch up the bottom at the end.

    I knit the wings in the round so they would be more substantial, and to eliminate the wrong side/right side. (They are essentially double-knit without using that technique.) It would be possible to adapt the pattern to knit the winds flat. The easiest way to do this adaptation would be to follow the charts for each wing or cut each row of typed directions in half.

    EX for the lower wings, change to:
    Row 1: Cast on 4 sts. turn and knit 1 round even
    Row 2: Pfb, P2, Pfb (6 sts)
    Row 3: K1 across
    Row 4: Pfb, K4, Pfb (8 sts)
    ... etc.

    Please shoot me an email if you have any other questions.

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  9. Very, Very Cute! First time on your website, and I love it so far, you have very cute knitting projects, and a lot of inventive ideas!
    Thank-you!
    Pat

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  10. Pat, thank you for the kind comment. I'm glad you like ChemKnits!

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  11. I just completed my first butterfly and it's the cutest thing ever! I adore this pattern! And a great way to use up some of my varigated scrap yarn! Thx!!

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  12. Maya, I'm glad that you enjoyed the pattern!

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  13. Thank you so much for sharing this pattern!

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  14. Did you use the dpn for making only the body or the wings are also made with dpn?

    I knit the body with a regular needles and it's not bad but wait to big but the wing didn't come out good. I've never use dpn so I have to try.

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    Replies
    1. I knit everything on double pointed needles. The pattern for the wings and for the body are meant to be knit in the round.

      Good luck!

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  15. I just made one wing using the same # of stitches and pattern on two needles, because I don't like dp needles. I just purled every other row including increases and decreases. You can just fold it over and sew one side. It came out fine. Your butterfly is adorable!

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  16. how could i make the wings match a monarch butterly any tips on how to color change to do so

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    Replies
    1. I would try to embroider/duplicate stitch the design onto an orange background. I think you could modify the wing chart to get a close representation (keep in mind that the wing chart represents half of the stitches in the wing since all of the wings are double sided.) Good luck!

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