It's cold out there, you guys. That probably goes without saying. But after a pretty mild winter last year, we are a little surprised to be freezing this year. Literally. This is a cold and frosty morning and it's only going to get colder (This is Arkansas! We've already had snow once! Why would there be more?!). So I thought it would be a good time to share a houseshoe pattern to keep you warm and cozy.
I should say that by "pattern," I mean "this thing I wrote down while making stuff up." I'm mostly sure that counts as designing. And I remember mentioning a while ago that if you liked rib stitch, you could make some killer bootees.
I'm wearing mine now. They're essentially just some tubes that my grandma knit for me with double stranded magenta Red Heart. I've had them for maybe 15 years or so, and they're holding on just great. I stared at them for a while in December to help me make a larger pair for my husband.
|Now might be a good time to mention that I am a bit smaller than my husband.|
My husband has a wide foot and wears a size 12 or 13, so I made these pretty large. If you know a Hobbit, or if you just really enjoy a comfy pair of slippers yourself, then you'll probably enjoy these.
I used Lion Brand Fishermen's Wool and Size 10 1/2 (6.5 mm) knitting needles. This probably uses a full skein, give or take a little bit. I bought another skein to use with my scraps just in case, but I probably didn’t need it. But I didn't know that at the time, and then at least saved me from trying to knit from both ends of the skein and tangling myself up.
There's really no trick to doubling up your yarn--just set the balls or skeins close together and make sure you always have both strands in your hand while knitting. With such large needles, you shouldn't have too much trouble with the stitches being tight. But if you do, move up to a larger size--especially if you're using a thicker yarn. I only used the Fishermen's Wool because I wanted to use wool, and because the brown seemed like a good choice for my husband (most of the things I knit for him are brown). Use any ol' yarn you want, though!
Okay, let's set things out in a more orderly fashion.
600-800 yards of yarn, preferably in two skeins
Size 10 1/2 (6.5 mm) knitting needles or corresponding Knook
Tapestry needle for finishing off and weaving in ends
Cast on 46 stitches
Knit in K1P1 ribbing for 16"
After your knitted fabric is long enough to suit you (lay it against the foot that's going to wear it to get the best idea), decrease by knitting two stitches together for a row. On the next row, purl two stitches together for a row. K2TOG for another row.
Cut an extra long tail on your yarn pieces, and thread the tapestry needle. Thread the yarn through the remaining stitches and pull it up tightly. The seam goes on the top of the foot, and tends to make the houseshoe curve a bit, and I think it helps it stay on your foot a bit better.
If you want your houseshoes to be smaller, just cast on fewer stitches. As long as you have an even number, you should be fine.
Reading back over this reminds me of trying to get a recipe from a friend when neither of you have a pen and paper. Sorry about that. I just blog over here, man.
Still, if you want some warm feet--and who doesn't right now?--and are in the mood for tons and tons of rib stitch, I think you'll like these simple houseshoes. Or maybe someone else will.
I'm kind of in the mood for a new pair now....
Stay warm and safe!
Oh, and one other thing! I just re-read this and thought I should mention that my husband likes these. They're a very warm and squishy knit!