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Basic Balaclava


Skill Level


Skills Needed

  • Short Rows

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Hikers! Bikers! Sports fans! Skiers! Snowmobilers! Military! This warm balaclava is the perfect headgear for everyone who ventures out in the cold. Knit with or without an optional flared collar. The 2/2 rib pattern helps keep the garment close to the face. The eye opening is wide, aiding sideways vision and allowing increased face exposure by pulling the lower part down (especially convenient for snacks). Consider highly visible or camouflage yarns, and even team or school colors. While the basic stitches are simple knits, purls and decreases, a couple of areas around the face require a bit of concentration. You'll have to work short rows for the chin, cast-on stitches for the cap, and pick-up stitches along the upper opening for the face rib. You'll also have to set aside some stitches while you work others. I've divided the pattern into six sections and knit a rainbow colored sample to help explain and simplify each step. The pattern also includes a worksheet for a multi-color team/school balaclava, plus gift tags for you to print. BASIC SKILLS NECESSARY Knit, purl, decrease Short rows Cast-on and pick-up stitches GAUGE 4 sts = 1" (16 sts = 4") SIZING / FINISHED MEASUREMENTS 4 circumference sizes 19.25" Small Adult 21" Medium Adult 22.75" Large Adult 24.25" X-Large Adult PREFERRED BRAND/YARN Any worsted weight wool, wool blend, acrylic or super wash

Supplies Needed

  • Medium [4 oz] [2.6 oz]
  • Weights [With] [Without] Flared Collar
  • #4 Worsted Weight Yarn

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I've retired from a wonderful career in graphic design and now spend my time volunteering for local animal-related organizations -- from fostering tiny kittens for adoption to assisting visitors at Seattle's award-winning Woodland Park Zoo. My knitting experience goes back decades, and includes co-authoring the now classic how-to book "The Knitters Guide To Sweater Design," published by Interweave Press. Almost all of my knitting goes to help non-profit groups, especially my "cat hats" which are sold at fairs and special events. All proceeds from these patterns go directly into the PayPal account of South County Cats, an amazing all-volunteer non-profit that provides free and low cost spay/neuter, TNR (trap. spay/neuter and rescue/release) of feral felines, plus foster/adoption of adoptable kittens and cats.