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Help and knitting tips

Knitting toys is fun and our Woolly Tales characters are suitable for fairly novice knitters. The best thing about knitting toys is that they don’t take too long, you don’t need much yarn or to think about gauge and if your Woolly Tales character ends up either being really massive or teeny tiny, it really doesn’t matter - unlike knitting a jumper! So we hope you enjoy our knitting patterns as much as you enjoy our Woolly Tales!

  • How to do the Magic Loop Method

    1: Cast on the desired number of stitches on to one needle.

    2: Move all of the stitches to the centre of the cable, find the centre of the stitches and bend the cable slightly. Pull through a loop of cable so that half of the stitches are on one side of the cable and the other half on the other.

    3: Slide the stitches on to the needles and ensure that the stitches are not twisted.

    4: Holding the needles horizontally and pointing to the right, the working yarn should be on the back needle at the righthand end. Pull the back needle through to the right, so that the stitches from that needle are now on the cable. Bring the back needle to the front to begin knitting the first half. This creates a second loop of cable.

    5: Knit across the stitches on the front needle.

    6: The working yarn will now be on the lefthand side of the knitting.

    7: Turn your work and push the unworked stitches on the cable onto the front needle, so that the working yarn is once again on the right end of the back needle.

    8: Pull the back needle through to the right, so that the worked stitches are now on the cable. Bring the back needle to the front to begin knitting. Knit across the front half of the stitches. You will have then completed a "round".

    Repeat steps 4 - 8 for each round. It is helpful to use a place marker to indicate the beginning of a round.

  • How to do a Turkish Cast On

    1: Hold the two needles together, pointing to the right. Ensure that the yarn is hanging down the back to the lefthand side.

    2: Begin winding the yarn around both needles from front to back, working from the left to the right. Wrap the yarn half as many times as the desired number of stitches. For example, if you want to cast on 16 stitches, wrap the yarn 8 times. End with the yarn behind the needles.

    3: Pull the bottom needle through the stitches, so that they are now on the cable.

    4: Knit across the stitches on the top needle.

    5: Turn your work so that the bottom needle is now at the top. Slide the top stitches on to the needle and pull the bottom needle through so that the bottom stitches are on the cable.

    6: Knit the top stitches.

    7: You can now continue knitting as the cast on is complete.

  • How to do an i-cord

    1: This can be knit on circular needles. You begin with casting on 3 or 4 stitches. You knit these stitches, then without turning your work, simply slide the stitches along the cable to the other needle, so that the working yarn is hanging to left of the needle (and not the right as it usually would).

    2: Then knit along the stitches again, pulling the working yarn across the back and ensuring that it is tight after knitting the first stitch.

    3: You repeat this process until your i-cord is the desired length.

  • How to make a pom pom

    The easiest way to make a pom-pom, especially the small ones usually required for our characters is with a pom-pom maker, which are fairly inexpensive.

    If you don’t have a pom-pom maker, then you can create your own pom pom makers by using cardboard.

    1: You will need to make a template - essentially make two doughnut shaped pieces of cardboard.

    2: Place the two pieces of cardboard together and begin to wrap the yarn around.

    3: Once the yarn is wrapped all the way around, cut the yarn. Then cut between the two pieces of cardboard.

    4: Using a separate piece of yarn thread it between the two pieces of cardboard and wind tightly around the centre of the pom pom and knot.

    5: Remove the pieces of cardboard and trim the pom pom to neaten.

  • How to make a tassel

    1: Using a piece of cardboard roughly the same length as the tassel you wish to make, wrap the yarn around it several times.

    2: When the tassel is the desired thickness, cut the yarn at one end. At the opposite end using a darning needle, take another piece of yarn and pass it under the wrapped yarn and knot tightly to hold the tassel together. Leave a long tail, as you will want to use this to create the head.

    3: Cut the opposite end of the loops on the rectangle to create the tassel. Wrap the long tail around the top of the tassel to create the head which can then be attached to your work. Trim tassel as desired.

  • How to knit legs, arms and ears

    1: To avoid lots of sewing body parts on our Woolly Tales characters, our patterns ask you to pick up stitches from the main body. To do so, slip your needle into the required number of stitches on the body, and so you can knit in the round, repeat on the row below with your other needle (both needles should point in the same direction).

    2: You can then begin to knit across the stitches.

  • How to knit noses

    Many of our Woolly Tales characters noses are knit directly onto the body. This is done by using waste yarn mid way through knitting the body, so that there is effectively a hole in the body where the nose can be knit on.

    Where the pattern asks you to switch to waste yarn, you will knit the required number of stitches:

    and then moving these waste yarn stitches back to the lefthand needle:

    and finally knit across them using the original yarn and continue to knit stitches until the end of the round:

    To then create the nose, you then release the waste yarn stitches by inserting your needle into the top stitches and the other needle into the bottom stitches:

    Then remove the waste yarn: