(shawl, afghan, knitter's choice)
Let's see how well I can transfer the knitting my fingers do to words. Can't find the book the pattern's in.
So, the main colour is the unifying colour with which every square begins, which forms thin stripes across the squares and of which you need lots. Sorry, I haven't measured how many yards per square. So far, with the rather thin yarn I'm currently using, I get 12 squares per 40gm ball. Of the contrasting colours I need between 12 and 13 yards per square, depending on the thickness of the yarn. Did I mention that in this lovely pattern the yarns do NOT all need to be exactly the same weight?
Another reason I'll be making more such afghans!
I'm using US#8 needles but the pattern calls for #9. I like a firmer fabric than the 9's gave me. The pattern calls ffor worsted weight yarn but, as I said, the exact thickness of the yarns is not critical. First square:
Cast on an even number of stitches. The pattern calls for 40 but it can be varied to make bigger or smaller squares.
Let's say it's 40 stitches cast on. Row 1:
Knit across - purling the last stitch to begin the chain selvedge. Row 2:
Knit across - slipping the first stitch as to knit and purling the last stitch.
(from now on, always slip the first stitch knitwise and purl the last stitch - every row) Row 3:
Sl 1 k-wise, k 17, k2tog, place marker, ssk, k 17, p 1. Row 4:
Sl 1 k-wise, k 34, p 1. [At this point I use the contrast colour for the last stitch - your choice to add it on the last stitch of this row or the first stitch of the next. It really makes no visible difference in the long run.
[b]Row 5:[/b] (first row of contrast colour) Sl 1 k-wise, k 16, k2tog, ssk, k 16, p 1. Row 6:
Sl 1 k-wise, p 33. Row 7:
Sl 1 k-wise, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k2tog, ssk, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, p 1. Row 8:
Sl 1 k-wise, purl across.
Change to main colour. Row 9:
Sl 1 k-wise, k 14, k2tog, ssk, k 13, p 1. Row 10:
Sl 1 k-wise, k 30, p 1. (These two rows form a single line of "purl bumps" on the right side and nicely delineate the bands of eyelets.)
Change to contrast colour and continue.
Can you see how this progresses? The first band of the contrast colour has 5 eyelets on each side of the center marker. Each subsequent band has one less and the final tiny band of cc has none. With a 40 stitch cast on, there are 6 bands of cc. When you get down to just 4 stitches of cc and are to change colour to the main colour: k2tog, remove marker, ssk, pass first stitch over second, cut yarn and pull through. Cut cc also. One square done.
At this point you must decide if you're going to do an afghan with zig-zags at beginning and end and which requires half-squares to fill in the zig-zags on the sides or an afghan with has no zig-zags and worked diagonally from one corner to the other.
If, as in the book, with zig-zags, then make more single squares. The pattern asks for 6 but the choice is up to the knitter. How big do you want it? Make an approiate number of single squares. Guaranteed: no sewing up to join them!
If your choice is to work without zig-zag's, then add another square to the first thusly: Cast on 20 stitches, place marker, pick up 20 stitches from the right-hand side of the first square - right side facing you. Continue from Row 2 above. For third square you first pick up 20 stitches from the left-hand side of the first square and then cast on the other 20 stitches and continue again from Row 2. If this isn't clear enough, drive on over and we'll do some small ones together.
Now, back to the several single squares if you want to have a zig-zag start and end. Pick up 20 stitches along the left side of one square, place a marker, pick up 20 stitches along the right side of another square and work from Row 2 above. Voilà! Two squares joined by the third. Continue in the same manner until all single squares are joined. Now, to make a straight sided afghan without casting on another stitch you need to make two half-squares - one on either side.
To do the half-square on the right-hand side of the afghan: Pick up 20 stitches along the right-hand side of the right-most square. Row 2:
(the picked up row being Row 1) Sl 1 k-wise, k 18, p 1. Row 3:
Sl 1 k-wise, k1, slip first stitch over second, k17, p 1. Row 4:
Sl 1 k-wise, k 17, p 1. Row 5:
(first row with contrast colour) Sl 1 k-wise, k1, slip first stitch over second stitch, k16, p 1. Row 6:
Sl 1 k-wise, p 17. Row 7:
Sl 1 k-wise, k1, slip first stitch over second stitch, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, k1, yo, k2tog, p 1. Row 8:
Sl 1 k-wise, p 16.
And so on.
I find the left-hand half-squares simpler since the decrease is just the k2tog before that one would have done before the marker in the full squares.
Does this all make any sense to you? If so, well and good. If not, get back to me and I'll try
to walk you through it.