Friday 28 April 2017

Queen of Hearts Summer Stole

I'm an optimist at heart. I believe that summer will finally come, although looking out at the hail showers today you'd be forgiven for not keeping the faith. Still, even when it does show up, it's got this habit of not always staying constant to its billing here in the UK. Without too much notice it can turn on a sixpence and go all chilly and grey-skied.

So a wrap of some sort or other is a pretty useful addition to any girl's summer wardrobe, and ta-dah! - I give you mine:

 It's knit in our own-label Costa Brava merino double knitting yarn in Buttered Caramel. For a scarf (including tassels) with a finished length of 194 cm/ 76" and a width of 40 cm/ 16" I used 620 g/ 1240 metres of yarn. This gave me a tension, working in pattern over the length and width of the stole, of 30 stitches x 28 rows for a 10 cm x 10 cm square.

 Just read on for the pattern:
The patterned central panels have been framed in a border of garter stitch, made up of 4 rows of garter stitch at either end, and 4 stitches of garter stitch, worked at the beginning and end of each row all the way through. Garter stitch borders work a certain magic on stocking stitch, or reverse stocking stitch, which forms the basis of most Aran type cable work. Without them you tend to get curly edges that stubbornly refuse to block flat. Add a little bit of a garter stitch frame and things are altogether easier to flatten down into a civilised textile.

At the very centre of my pattern I have a 26 stitch heart panel, which repeats over 30 rows. It is flanked by a couple of edge stitches knit in reverse stocking stitch, and then a pair of 6 stitch reverse twist cables. After another couple of edge stitches these lead out to my chain of hearts cable, which knits over 24 stitches, and repeats over 8 rows. Another 2 edge stitches follow with another pair of 6 stitch reverse twist cables that are finally bookended by my 4 stitch garter stitch side border.  Have a look at how they're organised in the photo below.

Being a bit dyslexic, I'm a great lover of diagrams and charts. When it comes to knitting cables I get lost in all the words in those wordy patterns that don't do diagrams. So in the interests of clarity here's a diagram showing how those panels fit together and giving the stitch count for each one. Remember all the edge stitches are worked in reverse stocking stitch i.e. purl right side rows, and knit wrong side ones.

Cast on 118 stitches on 4 mm needles. I used the cable cast-on method as it creates a first row that is easier to pick up and join tassels to at the end, bit if you want to do a normal cast-on that will work just fine too.

Knit 4 rows of garter stitch i.e. knit each row - both right side and wrong side.

Now start to work the pattern following the diagram above and the charts below for each panel of pattern.

I like to mark the beginning of each panel section with a stitch marker. This helps me keep track of where I am, and makes it easier to spot mistakes. If you'd like to make some stitch markers like mine, you can find my how-to-make-them post here : Knitting Jewellery.

Let's work out from the centre, and start with the stitch plan for the central heart motif:

Central Heart Chart

If you prefer to have your instructions in words the following are the written instructions for knitting the central heart panel:

Row 1 (RS): Purl (p). (26 sts)
Row 2 (WS): Knit (k).
Row 3: P11, 2/2 LC (slip next 2 stitches to cable needle, and leave at the front of your work, knit the next 2 stitches from the left needle, and then knit the 2 stitches from the cable needle),  p11.
Row 4: K11, p4, k11.
Row 5: P10, 2/1 RPC (slip next stitch onto cable needle, hold at the back of the work, knit the next 2 stitches on the left needle and then purl the stitch from the cable needle), 2/1 LPC (slip next 2 stiches onto cable needle, leave at front of work, purl the stitch from the cable needle and knit the 2 stitches from the cable needle)  p10.
Row 6: K10, p3, k, p2, k10.
Row 7: P9, 2/1 RPC, k, p, 2/1 LKC, p9.
Row 8: K9, p2, k, p, k, p3, k9.
Row 9: P8, 2/1 RKC, (p, k) x 2, 2/1 LPC, p8.
Row 10: K8, p3, (k, p) x 2, k, p2, k8.
Row 11: P7, 2/1 RPC, (k, p) x 3, 2/1 LKC, p7.
Row 12: K7, p2, (k, p) x 4, p2, k7.
Row 13: P6, 2/1 RKC, (p, k) x 4, 2/1 LPC, p6.
Row 14: K6, p3, (k, p) x 4, k, p2, k6.
Row 15: P5, 2/1 RPC, (k, p) x 5, 2/1 LKC, p5.
Row 16: K5, p2, (k, p) x 5, k, p3, k5.
Row 17: P4, 2/1 RKC, (p, k) x 2, 2/2 LC, (p, k) x 2, 2/1 LPC, p4.
Row 18: K4, p3, k, p, k, p5, (k, p) x 2, k, p2, k4.
Row 19: P3, 2/1 RPC, (k, p) x 2, 2/1 RPC, 2/1 LPC, (k, p) x 2, 2/1 LKC, p3.
Row 20: K3, p2, (k, p) x 2, k, p2, k2, p3, k, p, k, p3, k3.
Row 21: P3, k2, (p, k) x 2, 2/1 RPC, p2, 2/1 LPC, p, k, p, k3, p3.
Row 22: K3, p2, k, p, k, p3, k4, p2, k, p, k, p3, k3.
Row 23: P3, 2/1 LPC, k, p, 2/1 RPC, p4, 2/1 LPC, k, p, 2/1 RPC, p3.
Row 24: K4, p3, k, p2, k6, p3, k, p2, k4.
Row 25: P4, 2/1 LPC, 2/1 RPC, p6, 2/1 LPC, 2/1 RPC, p4.
Row 26: K5, p4, k8, p4, k5.
Row 27: P5, 2/2 LC, p8, 2/2 RC, p5.
Row 28: Knit.
Row 29: Purl.
Row 30: Knit.

Chain of hearts chart

Or, if you prefer words:

Chain of hearts pattern
Row 1 (RS): 2/2 LPC, 2/2 RPC, p3, 1/1 RC, p3, 2/2 LPC, 2/2 RPC. (24 sts)
Row 2 (WS): K2, p4, k5, p2, k5, p4, k2.
Row 3: P2, 2/2 RPC, p4, 1/1 RPC, 1/1 LPC, p4, 2/2 LPC, p2.
Row 4: K2, p2, k6, p4, k6, p2, k2.
Row 5: 2/2 RPC, p4, 2/2 RPC, 2/2 LPC, p4, 2/2 LPC.
Row 6: P2, k6, (p2, k) x 2, p2, k6, p2.
Row 7: K2, p4, 2/2 RPC, p, 1/1 RC, p, 2/2 LPC, p4, k2.
Row 8: P2, k4, (p2, k3) x 2, p2, k4, p2. 

6 Stitch Cable Twist 

Chart 6 Stitch Cable Twist
Row 1 (RS): Knit. (6 sts)
Row 2 (WS): Purl.
Row 3: 3/3 RC.
Row 4: Purl.

I worked for 482 rows of pattern, by which time the stole measured just shy of 170 cm/ 67" and then I knit 4 rows of garter stitch for the final border before casting off.

Work up some tassels, darn in your loose ends, block out your work, and you're done!

All the best for now,

Bonny x

PS If you'd like to learn more about how to make the tassels for the ends of your scarf, check out this post: How to tailor your tassel


  1. This is Gorgeous. I can't wait to try this pattern. Thank you for sharing!!!