Thursday 31 December 2009

Knitted snowman - free pattern

Greetings friends from us all at Flutterby Patch. We've had a very merry time here over the festive season and hope you have too. My little knitted family (you might have seen their patterns in my Etsy shop) have all gathered to wish you a Happy and Peaceful New Year


I thought I would end the old year and start the new one with a 'free' knitting pattern. A couple of days before Christmas I decided that my traditional cake decorations (that I use every year) were looking a bit tired and so I decided to knit some little snowmen.


I secured them on the cake by pushing one end of a cocktail stick into the knitted base and the other end into the cake. They measure approx 3.5ins (9cm) and are made from DK yarn. You will find the knitting instructions at the end of this post.
The poor snowmen grew increasingly worried when their cake grew forever smaller as slices were cut off and eaten.


But kind Tilly came to the rescue. She placed a thread through each of the little hats and hung the snowmen on the Christmas tree out of harms way.
So now the little characters can enjoy the view from high up in the branches.


Meanwhile I'm working on several new knitting patterns for my Etsy shop and receiving plenty of help from my little knitted family. You might recognise this rascal, it is baby Daisy who seems to be hiding her sister's dolly amongst my balls of yarn.


I hope you don't suffer from too many 'helping' hands whilst knitting.


Happy New Year to you all.


You should find this straight forward and easy to follow
All knitting is done with DK yarn (US – light worsted, Australia – 8 ply). You will need a small amount of white and bright shades for sweater, hats and scarves. Use 3.25mm needles (US 3).
The following pattern is for my basic snowman with hat and scarf (sweater instructions come at the end)

Body and head
Cast on 11 stitches in white and work in stocking stitch.
1. purl
2. increase into every stitch across the row (22st)
3 - 27. stocking stitch starting with a purl row
28. knit 2 stitches together across row.
Break yarn leaving 15cm (6in) tail. Use a tapestry needle to remove stitches onto this tail.
Making up
Starting at the bottom, gather the cast-on edge by catching each stitch and then stitch the seam (this will go at the back). Prepare to stuff the snowman through the gathered top which can be pulled open to allow stuffing to pass through. The firmer you stuff him the fatter he will become. When firm, but not over-stretched, pull the gathering thread to close the head and secure firmly.

Create a head
To create a head you need to firmly tie a length of white yarn around the snowman at row 18 to give him a neck.This will leave 10 rows for the head.
Cast on 9 stitches in white and work 11 rows in stocking stitch. Break yarn leaving a 15cm (6in) tail. Use a tapestry needle to remove stitches onto this tail. Gather the 9 stitches and use the gathering tail to stitch the arm seam. Before closing the top of the arm push a tiny amount of stuffing into the snowman's hand (you won't require much). Position each arm (see picture) and stitch to the snowman at the shoulders. Catch the wrist to the body with a single stitch.
Choose a colourful yarn (or two if you want stripes) and cast on 24 stitches. Work 13 rows in stocking stitch starting with a purl row and add your own stripe combination if required. Row 14 - knit 2 stitches together across the row. Break yarn leaving a 15cm (6in) tail. Use a tapestry needle to remove stitches onto this tail. Pull the thread and gather the stitches to form top of hat. Stitch the hat seam. Fit hat on the snowman's head turning up the bottom 3 rows to make a brim (see picture). DON'T stitch on the hat yet as first you must create a face.
With the hat fitted on the head decide where you will position the eyes. Remove the hat and stitch eyes with black yarn or embroidery floss. Large French knots make excellent eyes. You can secure the black yarn at the top of the head as it will be hidden under the hat.
You can embroider a black nose or make an orange nose like mine which is supposed to represent a carrot. I used the following method for the beaks on my penguins and it is quite effective.

Use bright orange yarn and cut off a 6in (15cm) length. Secure a tapestry needle into the arm of your sofa, a cushion (or similar) and wrapping the yarn around the needle, tie a knot in the centre (see picture below).
Tie two more knots pulling each one tightly so that you achieve a 'carrot' shape (see below). Slide the carrot nose from the needle and use the two orange tails to secure it to the snowman's face by passing each one through the head and out at the top.
The mouth is simply 4 small running stitches positioned to make a smile.
Made from a twisted cord of coloured yarn. Alternatively make a crochet chain.
Once the face is complete you can stitch the hat onto the head. I back-stitched the hat to the head so that the stitches were concealed beneath the turned back brim. Add a bobble/pop-pom to the top if required.
To give the snowman a sweater like the one I made simply knit 6 rows in white and then continue to row 18 in the colour of your choice (striping if necessary). At the end of row 18 break off colour and join white yarn. Continue to the end in white. For the arms knit 8 rows in the sweater colour and 3 rows in white to form the hands.
Wishing you lots of fun with your snowman knitting