Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Groomsmen BEERDS! (PATTERN)

As I mentioned before, I decided to make Shawls for my Bridesmaids, which led to the creation of Cootie-Catchers for my Flower Girls and Baskets for our Musicians.

The ultimate question was left...

What about the Groomsmen?

Most of them wouldn't appreciate anything that wasn't practical.  They all  had very different interests.  A prank gift would work, but it would have to be different for each person, and then you run into issues of relative-goodness-of-the-prank.

And then, my lovely hubby-to-be came up with a great idea.

L-R: Blonde, Brown, Green (he dyes his hair).
Unpictured: Black
Bearded Beer Holders.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that's right, now your beer can have a beard, just like you!  And here I am, to debut the BEERD!

After much searching and no luck, I decided to make my own pattern.

For this pattern, you need:

  • US size 3 DPNs or circulars
  • "hair" yarn, fuzzy, thicker wight, of whatever color you've chosen
  • "skin" yarn, DK or Aran weight, of whatever color you've chosen
  • a bottle
NOTE: The colorwork technique here is, as far as I know, unique, so please pay close attention.*

*Edit: I have since learned that this is basic intarsia knitting, I just made it up as I went along.  Good luck!

Directions:
  • Cast on 40 stitches (SKIN yarn) using whatever method you so choose
  • Join and knit 2 rows in the round
Now we begin with the beard.
  • (row 3) Knit 12 sts (SKIN), then knit 16 sts (HAIR)
Now, here's where things get tricky.  From here on out, you will not be knitting your rows all together.  Take a look at your knitting.  If you were to switch back to the skin color here, and then back to the hair on the next row, etc, imagine all of the stretches of unused yarn you'd have inside your Beerd!  It would be obnoxious and difficult to use.  Instead, here's what you do:

Go back to where your SKIN working yarn tail ends.  Slip stitches around on the needles so that you are ready to begin knitting again right where the colors change.

Slip one SKIN stitch over.  You should have hair stitches on your right hand needle, plus one skin stitch (with has the skin working yarn coming out of it).  On your left hand needle there should be the remaining skin stitches.  You should be holding the stitches with the wrong side facing you.  (See picture).

Then, begin purling the SKIN yarn back.  You will be leaving one skin stitch un-purled.  This is good.
Purl all the way until you line up with the end of your HAIR yarn.

Now, you will notice that in the "non-beard" section, half of it will be on row 4 and half will still be on row 3.  This is because your cast on is in that section.  Don't worry too much about it, but do try and keep track.

Now, what you're going to do is jump up to row 4 with your HAIR yarn, and purl all the way back to the other side of the beard.  This time, you will purl on top of one SKIN stitch when you turn, and then purl on top of the one SKIN stitch we left on the other side.  This will make your beard two stitches wider (one on each side).

Then, knit the SKIN yarn back to the start of the row to finish row 4.

Now, you can knit each section, from where the yarns are left, adding another HAIR stitch for row 5.  You will continue this knit/purl switch-off until your beard is 26 stitches wide.

Once your beard is 26 stitches wide, you're going to alternate on each row.  If we simply kept the beard 26 stitches wide, there would be a giant gap on the sides where it ended.  Instead, we alternate between 26 stitches and 24 stistches, so that the outer-most column of stitches alternates between SKIN and HAIR, keeping the entire Beerd together. (See pictures)

After five rows at 26/24 stitches, we add the mouth.

At this point, you will need one more "end" of each color.  You can either cut the yarn (leaving enough that you can knit much more before running out) or use the other end of your ball.

Wherever you are in your knit-purl switch, on the next row, the middle 6 stitches of the beard should be knit/purled with SKIN from the second end.  On the other side of that chunk of SKIN yarn (ie the mouth), continue knitting/purling with the second end of the HAIR yarn.  Continue alternating in a zig-zag formation at the edges of the beard.

On the next row, add two extra SKIN stitches on each side of the mouth (four total).  Repeat this three times (there should be 18 mouth stitches when you are done).

Hold this formation for two more rows.  Continue to zig-zag at the edge of the beard, but not at the edge of the mouth.
Cut off the SKIN yarn used for the mouth.  Knit/purl across the top of the mouth with HAIR yarn.

For the next three rows, turn one or two HAIR stitches into SKIN on each side of the beard each round, so that the beard gets smaller.  Cut off the HAIR yarn.  Knit across with SKIN.

Knit 10 more rows with SKIN.

Then, repeat the following sequence 5 times:
  • On the next row, decrease 3 stitches evenly across.
  • Knit across
After that, continue decreasing 3 stitches every round until there are 21 stitches left.  Bind off loosely and enjoy!

Ravelry Pattern
Whitsun's Ravelry Project | Luke's Ravelry Project
Rob's Ravelry Project | John's Ravelry Project | Curtis's Ravelry Project
Alec's Ravelry Project | Bret's Ravelry Project

If you liked this post, you might like some of these ideas: