Category Archives: Abbreviations and Guides


As noted on the sidebar, I really like trying to support local farms and I enjoy seeing the mills and testing out the yarn. I’ve found alpaca to be (surprisingly) the softest and SO smooth and easy to work with. The honeycomb stitch (also featured on the sidebar) is with my first test using llama fiber. It’s not as soft as alpaca and varies in thickness throughout (this is common among wools).

The thing I’m finding out, however, is that the stitch/pattern/project can work well with some fibers and not so much with others. From linen to wool, alpaca and llama – whatever you choose, you’ll want to find a compatible stitch, pattern, and project.


More to come…




Needles: whether using aluminum, bamboo, or some type of pressed composite – the make-up of the needles will affect how easily different yarns will move from needle to needle. Yarns tend to slide easily on aluminum but these are also heavier. Whichever you choose generally sums up to being that of personal preference but there are a few pointers to consider:

  • some needles have finer/sharper points than others. This isn’t something that’s documented on the needle packaging (nor have I seen much about this on various sites) so take a look when purchasing to see if there’s a difference between brands.
  • double-pointed needles (DPNs) come in various lengths so depending on the size of your project you may want a longer or shorter set
    • the new(er) Addi “broken” DPNs are really awesome to knit with, I just haven’t decided to spend the money on them, yet – try them out at a local yarn shop if you can
  • circular needles come in various lengths – so again, depending on the project – if you’re just starting out with hats, you’ll likely want 16″ as you can make newborn to adult sizes with these
  • there are interchangeable circular needles – where you can change out the cable length between, removing the need for multiple needles

Some template patterns

Maker:L,Date:2017-8-19,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-YOld Shale Pattern

The Old Shale Pattern gives you a scalloped edge and wavy, undulating pattern. My first try was with this afghan (using the 18 st combination below).

I’ve also incorporated it into some fingerless gloves. For the gloves I used the 12 st combination, double-point needles and opted out the purl row for all knit.

Old Shale Pattern (worked over 12 sts)

  • Row 1: purl
  • Row 2: k2tog (2x), *m1 (by picking up strand between last st and next st and knitting into it), k1* (repeating between * 4x), k2tog (2x)
    Repeat these 3 sequences to end of row.
  • Row 3: knit
  • Row 4: knit

Old Shale Pattern (worked over 18 sts) (used in afghan)

  • Row 1: purl
  • Row 2: k2tog (3x), *m1 (by picking up strand between last st and next st and knitting into it), k1* (repeating between * 6x), k2tog (3x)
    Repeat these 3 sequences to end of row.
  • Row 3: knit
  • Row 4: knit

Honeycomb Stitch – The pattern speaks for itself!

Maker:L,Date:2017-8-19,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y   Maker:L,Date:2017-8-19,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y

Row 1: (RS) Knit each st across the row
Row 2: (WS) K1, *yo, k2tog; repeat from * across the row.
Row 3: Knit each st across row
Row 4: K2, *yo, k2tog; repeat from * across the row to last st, knit 1.

Repeat rows 1 – 4


Sometimes I come across patterns which indicate to “decrease” or “make one” but it’s not always clear how to do so – and there are a variety of ways. Each can result in a slightly different appearance so I wanted to create a reference page (and maybe add pics soon). It took a couple years of learning how to knit (and to knit various projects) before I realized some of these basic techniques are sporadic, yet specific to every pattern.

Increasing techniques:

  • yo: yarn over – bring the yarn to the front if you are knitting, before a knit stitch, to gain an extra stitch (this leaves a small hole)
  • m1: (make 1) pick up a stitch by grabbing the joining stitch from previous row that joins two stitches together, knit into the back of it
  • kfb: knit front to back – knit one but without removing the knitted stitch from the left needle, knit again into the back side of that same stitch – resulting in two new sts (rather than only one).
  • ssk: Slip the first stitch on the LH needle (as if to knit) to the RH needle without actually knitting it. Do the same with the next stitch. Insert the LH needle into the front loops of these stitches (left to right).

Decreasing techniques:

  • k2tog: knit two sts together as one
  • sl1k1po: slip 1, knit 1, pass slipped stitch over
  • Left Slanting Turkish Rib Stitch
    • Cast on even number
    • Row 1a – Knit
    • Row 1b (WS): p1, * yo (in purl), p1-pass this back to left needle and pull next stitch over, slipping off the p1 and passing to right needle the new stitch (purl reverse, PR)* (repeating to end)
    • Row 2 (RS): K1, *sl 1, k1, psso, yo; rep from * to last st, k1