Knitting Project: a Cosy Rug
A Useful Knitting Project
Knitting a cosy rug is a good project for either summer or winter. As a rug is quite large, it can take a while to complete, but the squares are not large and a couple can be completed quite easily while watching the news and a show on TV in an evening. There are several advantages in choosing to knit a rug as a project.
- Making a rug is something that can be picked up and done while relaxing around a fire and chatting together and then left for months while you are occupied with other projects and then come back to again.
- It is a good way of using up all those odd balls of wool left over from other projects.
- A small rug, using just a couple of colours arranged in a pattern, is a great gift for either a child or an older person.
- Larger rugs can be made to fit a single bed, a double bed or even a Queen-sized bed.
It's a good idea to decide whether to use pure wool or just what type of yarn you will use, especially if you plan to give it away when it is finished. Some of my children will not use anything but natural products for their children, so it's important to remember not to use man-made products on gifts for them, or all that work may be relegated to a charity shop.
A hand-knitted rug can make a great gift for an adult grandchild, too; they know that the rug has been made for them with love.
How to Knit a Square
There are different ways of making the squares that will later be sewn or crocheted together to make the rug. Eight-ply wool is a good material to use and size 4.00 mm (or No. 8) knitting-needles work well for this type of project.
A Straight Square: A square can be knitted just straight by casting on, say, 30 stitches; knit plain (garter stitch) until it makes a square and then cast off.
A Square Knitted on the Diagonal: A square can be made by beginning with 2 sts and knitting either plain (garter stitch) or 1 row plain, one row purl (stocking stitch) and increasing 1 stitch each end of every second row until the size of the square is what you require (again 30 stitches works well), then decreasing each end of every second row. This has the advantage that the square has better 'pull' in the finished rug.
Squares that Have a Pattern: A rug that is made up of squares that have a pattern can be more attractive.
A Leaf Pattern Square
Instructions for the different stitches are shown above and also on my linked article, which is shown at the bottom of the article. This pattern is not original; I copied it several years ago and do not now know the source.
Cast on 2 sts.
1st row: K1, yarn forward, K1.
2nd row: K1, P1, K1.
3rd row: (K1, yfwd) twice, K1.
4th row: K1, P3, K1. Continue increasing in this way for rows 5 and 6.
7th row: K1, yn round needle, P1K2,yfwd, K1, yfwd, K2, P1, yarn over needle, K1.
8th row: K1, P1, K1, P7, K1, p1, K1.
9th row: K1, yrn, P2, K3, yfwd, K1, yfwd, k3, p2, yon, K1.
10th row: K1, P1, K2, P9, K2, P1, K1. Increase like this for rows 11 - 15.
16th row: K1, P1, K5, P15, K5, P1, K1.
17th row: K1, yrn, P6, yn back, slip 1, pass slip st over, k 11, K2 tog, P.6, yon, K1.
18th row: K1, P1, K6, P13, K6, P1, K1. Decrease leaf size for rows 19-26
27th row: K1, yrn, P11, ybk, sl1, K1, psso, K1, K 2 tog, P11, yon, K1.
28th row: K1, P1, K11, P3, K11, P1, K1.
29th row: K1, yrn, P12, ybk, sl1, K2 tog, psso, P12, yon, K1 (29 sts)
30th row: K1, purl to last st, K1.
31st row: K2 tog. Knit to last 2 sts, K2 tog.
32nd row: As 30th row.
33rd row: K2 tog, yfwd, rep to lst 2 sts, K3 tog.
34th row: Knit.
35th row: As 31st row.
Repeat rows 30 to 35 three times, then rows 30 and 31 once.
Last row: p3 tog. Fasten off.
To Make a Block
Make 4 squares, then sew or crochet them together with the leaves facing inwards to make a block. The leaves will then look like the petals of a flower.
The number of blocks needed for a rug depends on the finished size required.
- A knee-rug or a child's rug: 3 X 3 (9) blocks is sufficient (that is, 36 small squares).
- A rug for a single bed will need about 4 X 6 (24) blocks.
- A rug for a double bed needs about 6 X 6 (36) blocks.
To Finish the Rug
- Set all the blocks out in a large space and move them around until you find the colour combinations pleasing.
- Sew or crotchet the blocks together.
- It can then be complete, or you may wish to crochet an edging all around the rug.
- Finish with a light iron.
More About Knitting
- Beginner Knitting Techniques
Knitting techniques are discussed with simple instructions right from making the first loop for casting on. Everything in this article centres on learning the two main stitches and then utilising these in different ways.
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