Thursday, 24 January 2013

Felted "Sweat" Band

I don't know if anyone would want to sweat all over this felted "sweat" band made from suri alpaca and merino wool, but they'll look good doing it if they try! 

  • To felt you require a yarn that is preferably 100% wool, but I believe anything over 70% will felt to some degree. I used Martha Stewart Crafts 100% Merino in bluish gray, and Blue Sky Alpaca's Suri Merino in Snow.
  • US Size 10.5 double pointed needles (5)
  • Mild soap
  • Hot water
  1. Cast on 28 stitches (small), 32 (medium), 34(large) - These sizes are only approximate - as you are felting, keep checking the size. You can shrink it by felting longer, or stretch it when wet to make it bigger. Once dry, minor size adjustments can be made by re-wetting. 
  2. Divide the stitches evenly over 4 needles.
  3. Rounds 1-3: k
  4. Rounds 4-6: k dropping first colour and starting second colour.
  5. Rounds 7-9: k dropping second colour and picking up first colour again. 
  6. Cast off - use a needle one size larger, or be a bit loose with the cast off so there is a bit of give for fitting your hand through.
  7. Because you will be felting it, you don't need to bother with knitting in the ends! 
  8. Fill a basin with the hottest water you can handle to touch and add mild soap. 
  9. Keeping the band submerged for as much of the time as possible, vigorously rub it against itself. I rub my hands together like I am trying to warm them up. Note the amount of shirking to make sure  you don't felt it down too small. This takes about 5-10 minutes.
  10. Squeeze out excess water and reshape.
  11. You can cut down on drying time by wrapping it in a towel and stepping on it.
Enjoy as is, or jazz it up with some needle felting!

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