Monday, March 05, 2007

The Easter egg reborn

When you see Easter eggs, a symbol of fertility and rebirth, you know that spring is near. In an effort to hurry it along, I decided to loom knit some Easter eggs. I used a plastic egg for stuffing to maintain the "egg shape", but I soon discovered another problem in what would appear to be a fairly simple project. The problem was the appearance of the bottom of the egg when using traditional loom knitting cast on methods. All the traditional methods I tried produced surface stitches or bunching when the bottom opening was cinched shut.

After some experimenting, I created what I call the "drawstring" cast on. This cast on is created by anchoring the working yarn and then wrapping it completely around the loom once. The working yarn is then held across the top of the peg on the first or odd peg while the bottom strand of yarn is flat knitted OVER the working yarn. On the next peg or even peg, the the working yarn is laid across the peg, but the bottom strand of yarn is hooked UNDER the working yarn and lifted over the peg. To complete the cast on, continue lifting the bottom strands of yarn OVER the working yarn & peg on all the odd pegs, and UNDER the working yarn & over the peg on all the even pegs, until the last peg in the row has been reached. The beginning yarn tail forms a drawstring which can be cinched to completely close the bottom. This drawstring cast on would be good when making loom knitted toys or flowers.

The egg was made on the Knifty Knitter flower loom and completed by flat knitting 16 rows and doing a gathered bind off, leaving the top open so the egg can be inserted. Detailed instructions for this Easter egg can be accessed here, or in the pattern box on the right.

24 comments:

Mary said...

Those eggs are sooo adorable! What a great casting technique! It makes me wish I didn't pass on the flower loom when I was at JoAnn's last night :( Maybe I'll try one on my ITA mitten thumb loom ;) I can't wait to make a whole bunch of them and your cute little leghorn! Thanks so much :)

Little Old Liz said...

Ginkies!
Not only are those eggs cuties, but your inventive cast on technique will make it possible to knit a hat from the top down! Splendid idea and cheers all around.

Brenda GA, Dome-Dweller said...

Thanks ladies! I hadn't considered the top-down hat idea, but you are absolutely right. This will be something to investigate further. This is why I like to share ideas - I always get something back.

Kansas A. said...

Wow Brenda! With your cast-on technique you can do hats top down, toe up slippers, non weaved bags, etc, etc! I am so impressed! You really need to rename this "The Dome Dweller Cast-on!" I've been in a looming slump and you have renewed me LOL LOL!! Gotta go grab my looms!

american girl in italy said...

I love it. The finish is so nice. I can't wait to try it. It reminds me of the Figure 8 cast on that someone posted once, but this looks like it might come out nicer.

Anonymous said...

I love it when someone comes up with something new and you seem to be one of the ladies who is always doing that.

I really enjoy visting your blog because I never know what I might see next.

Dora Renee' Wilkerson
http://www.bricoreandfamily.blogspot.com/


Dora Renee' Wilkerson

needlecrafter107 said...

Brenda, You've done it again... These eggs are great! Thanks.

Steph said...

Brenda...

I absolutely love your drawstring cast-on method. Very ingenious!

Robbyn said...

Brenda, I just finished another egg and just wanted to let you know that when substituting the 12 peg thumb loom, you need an extra couple of rows or it is REAL tight getting it fastened on the egg! The one I did that I lost count on was 18 rows and it looks better as it is not quite so tight!

Thanks again!

Brenda GA, Dome-Dweller said...

Glad you are enjoying the drawstring cast on. I've come up with another cast on that I call the "scalloped edge" cast on, which creates a decorative edge for baby hat and such. I'll post it on my return from vacation at the end of March. You're going to really love this one.

Bucky said...

Wow how so very cute. My 2 Granddaughter would really love these. I want to say Thank You for sharing your very creative.
Very cute colors also. Happy Knitting. I love coming to see all the wonderful things you have.

Bucky

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great idea! I made some of these using Sugar'N'Cream and filled 1/4 of the egg inside with small beads to make egg "maracas" for my niece, who is not yet 1 and too young for Easter candy : )

Annie said...

I can't figure it out the casting. I feel like a moron:(

Can you post a video of it?

Anonymous said...

I had lots of trouble with the cast on, too - I was making it harder than it really was! Just secure the working yarn around the holding peg, and take the yarn around the outside (on top of the pegs - don't wrap individual pegs)of all of the pegs in a big circle. Then, on the first peg, lay the working yarn above the "wrapped" yarn & bring bottom (wrapped yarn) over top (working yarn). Next peg, lay the working yarn above the wrapped yarn, but place your needle or hook behind the working yarn & pull the bottom (wrapped yarn) through it, up and over. Alternate pegs like this all the way around, then start the next row according to the pattern. Sorry the explanation is so wordy, but it's really an easy, great cast on. Good luck : )

Melissa said...

I just browsed the patterns you have listed on the sidebar. These are awesome! I have had the knitters for over a year now and am always looking for new things to use them for. Thanks so much for sharing your work!

Janette said...

Can someone explain this "drawstring" method in lament terms for me? I can't follow along so I also tried the easir way on the link at the bottom of the screen...I'm lost Help anyone please!

easter Gifts said...

Amazing , wonderfull , great and really creative. And i think its a wonderfull easter gift.

Anonymous said...

When you say, "wrap it all the way around the loom twice", do you mean e-wrap? Other than that, I think they look VERY cute!!

Brenda GA, Dome-Dweller said...

Glad you like the eggs! Please email me at the address in the footer of the pattern and I'll be happy to help you with any questions regarding the pattern.

Fruit Designer said...

Wow, fantastic eggs. Such a better way to do it than the chocolate type. Much more creative, lasts far longer and doesn't add weight to your hips.

justalooming said...

Hi Brenda--- Wow! what wonderful things you have created. My sister fell in love with your eggs reborn. Every time I make a different color one and show her she grabs it runs off saying "More- More -More!" I am going to try to make some other things on your site but am afraid to as the same thing might happen and there goes my yarn for other projects I had seen other places. HA!ha!ha! guess there is always more yarn. Love the pretties keep up the good work . I'll be watching for more fantastic little items to come :)

Brenda GA, Dome-Dweller said...

Thank you, Mary! I've just revised this pattern for Simplicity/Boye to include stripes and embroidery techniques. I'm not sure how or when they will make the pattern available.

Rupali said...

Beautiful Easter Eggs. I can use them for my easter party. Thanks for sharing.

Ms.Sandy said...

I love these eggs but had no idea what you where talking about with the draw string so I looked it up on You Tube. I hope this help everyone else to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4g84oVcYlc

Sandy
crafty-sandy.blogspot.com
https://www.facebook.com/creationssandy