A lot longer ago than I meant it to be I promised to do a tutorial for my Binary Scarf (named by Julie here). Well, today is finally the day and I hope it is worth the long wait!
This pattern was designed to show off my hand-dyed, hand-spun wool but it is equally suited to any beautiful yarn that doesn't need a complicated stitch pattern to shine. It can be made in any weight of yarn and depending on the quantity you have and how much knitting you want to do it can be made to any size, working just as well as a handkerchief, a scarf or a wrap/shawl. Even better, as you can see it growing as you knit and you can adapt the size to suit each individual yarn, you don't need to knit a gauge/tension square.
It is an incredibly easy design and I hope it will encourage even a new or inexperienced knitter to have a go....
You will need: your chosen yarn and straight or circular needles of an appropriate size (this is usually written on the ball band or you can try a few sizes until you get a stitch size that works for you).
To make the main scarf: cast on 3 stitches.
Row 1 : knit to last stitch and then increase one, by knitting into the front and back of the last stitch. (Video tutorial of how to do this here.)
Row 2 - final row : repeat the first row until your scarf is the size you want. There is really no restriction to this other than the amount of yarn you have or the number of stitches you can hold on your needles.
Final Row : Cast off loosely.
At this point you will have a triangle with a long edge along where you have cast off and two shorter sides. Now is the time to add the decorative crochet edging....you can use any contrasting or complimentary yarn and as you don't need much it is an ideal way of using up short lengths of lovely skeins that are left over from other projects. You also need an appropriately sized crochet hook, don't worry too much though, a couple of sizes bigger or smaller than recommended for the yarn probably won't matter too much.
Start by pushing your hook through the stitches on one of the top corners.
Wrap your edging yarn around the hook and pull through to make a loop, leave a tail of yarn hanging on the other side, we finish off weaving this in at the end.
Now make 5 chain stitches and then push your hook back through the scarf at a place where your chain will form a loop. I don't use an exact distance, as if you are using an uneven yarn (like my hand-spun!) your stitch size will vary considerably and the distance will vary too.
You now need to make one US single crochet (SC) / UK double crochet (DC) which will attach your loop to the scarf.
Carry on around all of the edges of the scarf making your chains of 5 and then fixing them into the knitting as evenly as you can by eye. As you come back to the corner you started from try and be mindful of ending your loops at the corner. This can be achieved purely by making your SC/DC at slightly different spacing or if you have a large discrepancy you can adjust the number of chains you make for the last few loops. I promise you no one will notice when you are wearing it!
Now carry on around your scarf in the same way but this time making your SC/DC into the third chain of the row below. This results in a double layer of loops, with the second row offset half way to the first.
Carry on around your two shorter edges and the pull your yarn through and finish off at the top corner. I think it looks nicer with just one row along the top edge but feel free to play around and make your loops carry on, make them bigger or do more layers as you like. Weave in all your loose ends and you are ready to show off your deceptively simple scarf.
If you have any questions please leave them in the comments or email me at mousybrownshouse (at)googlemail(dot)com and I will try and get back to you with answers as soon as possible.