Mary Moreau

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

So I Made a Couple of Beards

Back in November or December a friend of mine asked if I would be able to knit some beards for her. She sent me a link to one she had seen online and I could see that it was done in crochet. Since I have exactly one crochet related skill, the chain stitch, I said that I would be able to produce something similar in knitting. She particularly liked the flair of the curly mustache on the example that had inspired her to seek my help. Here is what I came up with:

The knitters among you may likely notice that I chose blackberry stitch as the main stitch for the beard; it lent a burly quality that I thought important if one is to wear a knitted beard. I found the stitch pattern in the stitch dictionary Super Stitches Knitting by Karen Hemingway. On the second beard that I knit (pictured) I used my crochet skill to chain stitch a button loop so that the beard can be buttoned to the inside of a tuque. Velcro strips work too.

The beards I knit are being worn by snowboarders with a sense of humour and a desire to protect their faces from the cold. Perhaps you yourself know a similar person? Of all the things I've knit in my life this project is the one that has generated the most buzz, which is to say not that much since I'm not among the knitterati, but I have had requests for both beard and pattern. At the very least, a few people have been intrigued. Since I've made use of many free patterns found online in the past I am going to provide you, lucky reader(s?), with the instructions for knitting a beard.

BEARDY FUN an original merlottricot design

Blackberry Stitch Pattern (it resembles the fruit, not the smartphone)
Multiples of 4 sts
Row 1: [RS] *[K1, yfwd, K1] into same st, P3, rep from * to end
Row 2: *P3tog, K3, rep from * to end
Row 3: *P3, [K1, yfwd, K1] into next st, rep from * to end.
Row 4: *K3, P3tog, rep from * to end.
These 4 rows form the blackberry stitch pattern.

Yarn: I used Red Heart Super Saver, don't ask. Or you can use a similar weight yarn.

Dear Red Heart, I'm sorry but you are way to splitty and fake for my liking and I will not be associating with you anymore. Sincerely, Merlot

Excuse the interruption.

I regrettably did not bother measuring gauge, so you'll have to wing it a bit if it's too big or too small. Or you can just pin it farther back or forward into the chosen hat.

Needles: US10 - 6mm straight needles, 6mm double pointed needles (just 2 needed)

CO 12 sts

Work the 4 rows of blackberry stitch pattern 2x

Increase Section: knit increase sts on subsequent rows until 4 increases are made and you can continue in blackberry stitch
R1, R2 inc at beg of row (13 sts), R3, R4 inc at beg of row (14 sts)
R1, R2 inc at beg of row (15 sts), R3, R4 inc at beg of row (16 sts)

Work the 4 rows of blackberry stitch pattern 2x
I had about 5" at this point.

Knit 6 sts of R1 and place on holder for making upper lip later.
continue in blackberry stitch pattern until you have done 3 pattern repeats.

Put beard sts on holder while you work the upper lip area.

Upper lip: knit blackberry stitch pattern 2x. Remember that you already knit R1 before you put the stitches on a holder, so start with R2!

Now you are ready to continue in pattern on all sts and can put everything on one needle again.

Work the 4 rows of blackberry stitch patter 2x

Decrease Section: once you decrease, knit the extra stitches that can't be worked in blackberry stitch.
R1 dec at end of row, R2, R3 dec at end of row, R4
R1 dec at end of row, R2, R3 dec at end of row, R4 (12 sts)

Work the 4 rows of blackberry stitch pattern 2x

Bind off.

Curly Mustache appliqué:

For the mustache I knit a few inches of 4 stitch i-cord on the DPNs. I sewed the i-cord into itself until it resembled a little snail and then I appliqued it onto the beard.

Here is an i-cord tutorial video for instructions on making i-cord.

Happy bearding!



TCO said...

Luv it!!!

Sarah Shewring said...

Thank you so much for this Merlot. I was considering trying to learn crochet to create a beard hat for s friend but this pattern is brillant and like you, chain stitch is my crochet limit!!
I had to watch a tutorial to understand "(K1 yo K1) into the same stitch." But once I understood I meant I was increasing by two stitches from the same stitch, it was all fine!