Monday, March 28, 2011

Marilynn's Felted Kindle Cover Knitting Pattern

I am pleased to present the first ever Guest Contributor to ChemKnits, Marilynn from Napa, CA! According to Marilynn, "I've been knitting for about two years. This is the first time I've designed a pattern. There weren't many felted Kindle covers online..." so she created this lovely cover to provide your eReader with extra protection.

  • Size 8 knitting needles
  • 1 skein Lion Wool yarn, Autumn Sunset (or any worsted weight wool)
  • 1 button
  • Velcro tabs

The Case Pattern
  • Cast on 56 sts
  • Knit in Garter stitch 2 rows (K both rows)
  • Knit Stockinette stitch until 11” long (K right side rows, P wrong side rows)
  • Bind off
  • Fold the fabric, Use mattress stitch for sides and bottom

The Flap Pattern
  • Cast on 30 stitches
  • Work 10 rows in Stockinette stitch (K first & last st on purl rows)
  • 11th row (and all odd rows) decrease 2 stitches, one at either end of the row.
  • 12th row - K1, P until last stitch, K1.
  • Repeat rows 11 and 12 - until 2 stitches remain. Bind off.
  • Attach to top of cover by either mattress stitch or picking up stitches.

  • Felt until slightly larger than the Kindle (7.5”H x 4.8”w). Measure during felting process so it doesn’t shrink too much. It can be stretched, to a point, before it dries.
  • Sew squares of Velcro at end of the inside of the flap and to appropriate spot on cover.
  • Sew a decorative button to the outside of the flap.

I hope you enjoy Marilynn's Felted Kindle Cover as much as her Shih Tzu and cat who kept her company as she designed this knitting pattern for you. I am so glad that she found me through my article on free iPad Cover knitting pattens so I could help her share this pattern with you!

Abbreviations and Definitions Used in this pattern:
Stockinette - Knit across the right side rows, purl across the wrong side rows
Garter - Knit all rows
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 pattern was created by Marilynn and published at for your personal or charity use. You are not distribute or reprint this pattern without the permission.
© 2011 Marilynn, guest designer at ChemKnits (

Friday, March 25, 2011

L&R Oven Mitts

Another oven mitt knitting project for me! The fun thing about these oven mitts is that I decided to add L and R to the back. Not only can these stand for Left and Right, but they also happen to be the initials of the recipient! It took 3 balls of Wool of the Andes (150g total) to complete the two oven mitts.

My intent was to create the L and R with duplicate stitches using 1 strand of yarn. When I got part way through the L, I found that the double knit fabric is so thick compared to the rest that I was afraid it would not felt correctly. Therefore I decided to embroider the L and R on after the fact and cut out the duplicate stitches I had already done.

Duplicate stitching the bottom of the L. I later cut this out.

The embroidered L & R.

I will share the L and R charts that I created (and didn't use) in my next post. Congrats on your condo, Laura!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Do you knit for Easter?

Do you stop knitting in the Spring? Here at ChemKnits, I notice a seasonal trend with Google searches for knitting related topics. It makes some sense, most people aren't thinking about hats or scarves as the weather warms up.

I tend to create knit gifts for almost any occasion. So what about a Spring holiday like Easter? If you are making an Easter basket for children, why not knit them the stuffed bunny? Why not use some fun knit eggs to decorate your home?

There are many things you can do with Easter themed knitting patterns. I found many free patterns in my research that would fit this theme. So keep these in mind as you start thinking about packing up your knitting needles. Reflect on your habits and fight the urge to let knitting be only a seasonal hobby!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Gosling 2.0

This is the second time that I've knit this gosling. The Bird in Hand knitting pattern used to create these goslings came from the bookFamily Circle Easy Toys: 25 Delightful Creations to Knit and Crochet (Family Circle) by Trisha Malcolm.

The two goslings. The new one is a bit plumper than the old one.

Why did I knit another gosling? Well my friend Caroline has always loved this gosling, and at some occasions tried to steal it from my house. I wanted to make Caroline her own gosling, so I knit one to give her at her bridal shower.

I knit this second gosling in the same way, with the same materials as the first knit gosling. (Eyelash yarn, size 5 double pointed needles.)

The body of the gosling is knit flat as double knit fabric. At the end, you divide the stitches onto two needles so you can stuff the body!

In this one picture, the variegation of my eyelash yarn is very apparent. I love the striping!

In this profile of the gosling body, you really do see a classic Rubber Ducky shape!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Antibacterial Travel Mug Cozy

This has been a Spring of graduations. I defended my dissertation on Feb 7, and the next week another grad student from my lab, Marie, defended hers. To celebrate Marie's PhD, I created a travel mug cozy featuring a molecule involved in her research. (Marie doesn't drink coffee, so although this would work as a coffee cozy, I wanted the title to fit HER.) Congratulations Marie!

Disclaimer: This project is called an Antibacterial Mug Cozy because it contains the structure of an antibiotic on it, the yarn and cozy itself does not contain any antibacterial qualities.

  • Size 3 (3.25 mm) double pointed needles
  • Remnants of machine washable worsted weight wool in Pink (MC), Blue (Nitrogens), Black (Bonds) and Red (Oxygens).
  • Yarn needle or crochet hook for finishing
  • Gauge over stockinette: 5 sts/inch, 7 rows/inch
  • Size : Height 4.75" high, 7" circumference.

The Chart

N(beta)EpSmDAP, the active molecule of one of the dapdiamide antibiotics. (30x19 sts)

The Pattern
  • CO 47 stitches of MC
  • Join in the round, K21 stitches, *P2, K2* until last 2 stitches, P2.
  • If you are using three knit needles, arrange the stitches so 21 are on the first, 12 on the second and 14 on the third. The entire pattern will take place on the center of needle 1, and ribbing on the 2nd and third needles (the remaining 26 sts).
  • Round 1: K21 stitches, *P2, K2* until last two stitches, P2.
  • Round 2: K1, work the first row of the pattern (1: Right to left), K1, *P2, K2* until last stitch, P1.
  • Work all 30 rows of the pattern as above, sticking with the same ribbing pattern
  • Work 1 row (K21 stitches, *P2, K2* until last stitch, P2.)
  • Cast off loosely, sticking with ribbing pattern where applicable.
  • Weave in all loose ends.

Front (left) and back (right) of the cozy.

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 pattern was created by Chemknits for your personal or charity use. You are not to distribute or reprint this pattern without the permission of Chemknits.
© 2011 ChemKnits (

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Squidoo Squid Knitting Pattern

I joined Squidoo in November of 2010. I have been using this writing platform to expand my knitting niche and explore writing about other topics that interest me.

The official Squidoo logo (left) that is the basis for this knitting pattern (right).

  • Size 1 (2.5 mm) double pointed knitting needles
  • Fingering weight wool in blue, orange and black (small amounts). I used KnitPicks Palette that I hand dyed myself.
  • Yarn needle for finishing
  • Polyfill stuffing or yarn scraps to stuff the squid.
  • Gauge: not important for this project

The Pattern
  • Cast on 6 stitches in Black onto three double pointed needles (2 sts on each needle)
  • Row 1: Join in the round, Kfb across (12 sts)
  • Row 2: *K1, Kfb* repeat across the row (18 sts)
  • Row 3: Switch to Blue: K 1 row across
  • Row 4: *K2, Kfb* repeat across the row (24 sts)
  • Row 5: K 1 row across
  • Row 6: Switch to Orange: *K3, Kfb* repeat across the row (30 sts)
  • Row 7: K 1 row across
  • Row 8: *K4, Kfb* repeat across the row (36 sts)
  • Rows 9-17: K across the row (9 rows total)
  • Row 18: *K4, K2tog* repeat across the row (30 sts)
  • Row 19: K1 row even
  • Row 20: *K3, K2tog* repeat across the row (24 sts) This completes knitting the body of the squid.
  • Starting with the first six stitches, knit a 6-stitch icord for 21 rows to create the first of the four legs.

  • Make three more 6-stitch icords of the same length. The legs are now complete.
  • Finishing: Stuff the squid with polyfill stuffing, and then start to stitch the bottom of the body closed. First I sewed up a bit between each leg, and then I sewed across the gap and drew it closed. (See below images.)
  • Email me a picture of your finished knit Squidoo Squid!

I worked on the 4 icord legs at the same time to help keep the lengths consistent.

When closing the bottom of the squid, I started by sewing in between the legs

Cinching the bottom closed.

Are you interested in a writing platform that has a warm and supportive community? I recommend that you give Squidoo a chance! Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about the service.

Happy Knitting!

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.
sl - slip a stitch

This pattern was created by ChemKnits for your personal or charity use. You are not distribute or reprint this pattern without the permission of ChemKnits. Squidoo(tm) is a trademark of Squidoo LCC and has no affiliation with ChemKnits. This project was not endorsed by Squidoo
© 2011 ChemKnits (

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Dyeing Squidoo Orange

I haven't shared step by step dyeing images in a while, especially since I've written my Dyeing Yarn with Kool-Aid tutorial. I'm now using standard food coloring much more than Kool-Aid. It's cheaper, after all. That being said, I do miss the wonderful smells!

  • Small skein of KnitPicks Bare Fingering weight yarn (I really need to get a scale so I can weigh the amount of wool I'm using.)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2T white vinegar
  • liquid food coloring

The materials I used for this yarn dyeing project

I did not pre-soak the wool for very long. I added 5 drops of red and 4 drops yellow food coloring. Gently stirred to distribute the food coloring through the entire dyebath and then microwaved the mixture for 5 minutes.

I added the food coloring while the wool was still in the dyebath. Since the water was cool, I didn't have much trouble stirring it, but you want to be careful if the water is warm because Heat+Agitation = felting

After the 5 minutes of microwaving, the color of the wool is a little more red then I was hoping for. (My pictures didn't really pick this up well.) You should also note that there is still a lot of color in the dyebath.

I added 4 more drops of yellow food coloring (total of 5 red and 9 yellow) to help get more of an orange color. I gently mixed the dyebath (so not to felt the yarn) to distribute the yellow dye and then microwaved the mixture for 1 more minute.

After this last microwave stage, there is still some dye not absorbed to the yarn. I let the yarn sit in the dyebath to cool, and all of the color eventually was absorbed.

A little heat is all you need to allow all of the dye to absorb completely (right picture). This means that if you are happy with the color you have, remove it from the dyebath or it could continue to change!

I am really happy with the orange color. Now I'm on to create my Squidoo related knitting project! (I am calling this color Squidoo orange, after all.)

The yarn is hanging to dry.

Are you looking for Kool-Aid packets to dye yarn?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Search for Pet Halloween Costume Knitting Patterns

Some people think it's silly to dress up pets, but on Halloween this argument does not have much weight. I have searched for dog and cat costume knitting patterns, and I was a little disappointed because I did not find as many as I had hoped for.

Cats and dogs come in so many shapes and sizes that all of these patterns will require some adaptation so you can make the costume fit your pet.

  • King of Beasts Dog Sweater - This Lion dog sweater is complete with a mane around the head, fully transforming your pet into a lion. (you will need to create a free lion brand account to view this pattern)
  • Secret agent collar - A bow tie for your cat. I would imagine that you could modify this pattern for your dog, as well.
  • Lady Liberty Cat Hat - Complete with a matching torch! Turn your pet into the USA landmark.
  • Cat Mask - A ninja mask for your cat (or dog)!
  • Floppy Ears Headband - The story behind this design is heartwarming.
  • Fez Cat Hat - You're knitting a pet sized fez, what more description do you need?
  • Cat Beret - So cute!
  • Witch's hat for pets - a strap under the chin is modeled by a cat. You will need to create a free Ravelry account to download this pattern.
  • To humiliate the dog - This hat has mouse-like ears on top of it, transforming your dog into another animal. The designer suggests that you replace the ears with other shapes to further transform your pet. You will need to create a free Ravelry account to download this pattern.

Friday, March 4, 2011

How to Knit a Square for a Knit-A-Thon (Videos)

In the 2009 Pine Street Inn Knit-a-Thon, I taught some of my friends to knit so they could contribute squares to the project. I am so proud of the work that they did. In case we do this again this coming fall, I wanted to make a post that would work as helpful reminders on the basics of knitting; Casting on, the knit stitch, the purl stitch, binding off and weaving in loose ends.

Gauge is something else you need to consider when knitting, but I will not discuss that in this blog post.

For additional help, check out the article I wrote with tips on how to knit.

Video 1: Making a Long Tail Cast On

Video 2: The Knit Stitch

Video 3: The Purl Stitch

Video 4: Binding Off

Video 5: How to Weave in Loose Ends

Hopefully these videos will act as a sufficient reminder for you. As always, let me know if you have any questions.

Do you need materials to get you started knitting? I have assembled a great list of learn to knit kits that will help get your started.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Kevlar Yarn!

Talk about novelty yarn! For my birthday this year, Keith gave me some Kevlar Yarn. That's right... yarn that is made out of KEVLAR. This is the strong material that is used in bullet proof vests and more.

According to Dupont, "Needled felts of Kevlar® have excellent cut and heat resistance and offer good protection against punctures. Because of their stiffness and shedding of fibers during material handling, needled felts are rarely used as outer fabrics. They are typically used as substrate materials."

So what should I make with the Kevlar yarn? I don't have a lot of yardage, so it needs to be a small project. I also have to figure out a way to cut the yarn, since my standard craft scissors had some trouble....