Highlight text to annotate itX
in this tutorial we're going to learn to make the poncho on the mannequin behind me.
it's called the Rodeo Drive Poncho, the design was inspired by a recent trip i had to Beverly
Hills California, and a trip down Rodeo Drive.
this poncho is, i'm going to put at advanced beginner level.
if you are confident at knit stitches and purl stitches and your stitches look pretty
good, you can do this, because i'm going to show you how to do all of the other parts,
that make it more complicated.
and that would be make 1 stitches, and the cable, and magic loop, which i'll talk about
in a moment.
if you would like to get your copy of the pattern to follow along, the pattern is available
for purchase and instant download.
i'll give you a link here on screen to my website where you can get that.
there is also a link in the video description below, just below the video, to my website.
and also to Ravelry, where you can buy it directly from there and save it to your Ravelry
this is a pretty simple pattern.
and the thing about this pattern, the thing that really makes it lovely, are two things.
two things make it lovely.
one is nice stitches.
so that's why i want you to be an advanced beginner, and not still trying to find your
pretty, even stitches will make this nicer.
also, if you use an animal fiber yarn, it tends to be more forgiving with tension issues.
so if you have little tension issues, they won't be a big deal.
the second thing that makes this poncho really stunning is the yarn.
i don't often call for luxury yarns in my patterns, but this is one of them.
i've used a cashmere blend yarn, because this was inspired by a trip down rodeo drive.
luxury yarn was the key here.
i list out in the pattern, on my website, and in the video description below the exact
yarn that i used.
it's a cashmere blend and it's really reasonably priced.
so you can, you can have a really luxury yarn to work with that you're really going to enjoy
and not break the bank with it.
so that's the yarn.
the needles for this, in a perfect world, of course you have every needle size every
needle cord length, everything else, right?
but i'm going to assume that you don't.
this uses circular needles, because it's knit entirely in the round.
and ideally, i don't expect you to have this, but ideally you will have 16" circulars, maybe
24" circulars, and 32" circulars.
but i realize most people don't have all of that, or all of those interchangeable sets.
so i'm going to show you how to work this entire pattern on just one length of cord.
a 32" circular needle.
and the pattern starts out small at the neck, and it increases down, until you will eventually
be using, you will need the 32" circulars by the time you finish the pattern.
i said that this is called rodeo drive poncho, and the reason i was inspired by this was
i was in los angeles recently, shooting video at the YouTube Space there.
and Parker, my producer and i, went down to Beverly Hills and then to rodeo drive.
and to be perfectly honest, i wasn't really that excited about rodeo drive.
because i do not give a fig about designer labels.
and this is kind of the mecca of designer labels shops in los angeles.
but i was so pleasantly surprised, because i loved it!
and it didn't matter that these were designer labels.
it mattered that there were so many examples of great design everywhere.
and part of that great design was a cashmere poncho that i saw, and pretty much right after
i got home, i started designing the pattern for this.
okay, so - no! i still have to talk about one more thing.
you definitely want to swatch before you start this.
and i give you instructions for making this cute little swatch with the garter stitch
i give that on my website and in the video description below.
as well as in the pattern.
you want to make sure that you're getting the same number of stitches per inch, or stitches
over ten centimeters, as i am, so that your poncho turns out the same size.
and not huge or tiny compared to mine.
and what you're going to do is knit up a swatch, following the instructions.
you can start with the same needle size that i used.
but your needle size may need to change.
and there is no shame in that!
we all knit with different tensions.
you might be a tighter knitter or looser knitter than me,
and that's okay. we can adjust that with the needle size.
so you'll knit up your swatch, you'll follow the washing instructions on the yarn label.
to wash and block, or dry, your swatch.
and with this yarn that i used, i hand washed it in wool soap and set it out flat to dry.
and then once it's dry, you measure the number of stitches that you're getting per inch.
if you're getting too many stitches per inch, you want to go up a needle size to make your
stitches bigger, so fewer of them fit in an inch.
if you're getting too few stitches per inch, you want to go down a needle size to make
your stitches smaller.
and this is all explained in the pattern as well.
so you need your pattern, yarn, needles, and the first thing that we're going to start
with next is using the magic loop method.
i was just reminded of something.
i was going to call this the "rodeo" poncho.
and i decided against that, because in writing, it looks like 'rodeo' poncho.
which brings up a very different image of what this poncho looks like!
you wouldn't expect a rodeo poncho to be knit in cashmere yarn.
anyway, first up we're going to start with the cast on, and using simple magic loop method.
and what i'm going to show you here is something you can take on to lots of other projects.
because you'll find yourself knitting, wanting to make a hat, let's say, and a hat is not
a very big tube.
but you only have long needles in the size that you need to make this hat.
you can just use this magic loop method and complete the entire hat on the long circular
it makes it so you don't have to have every size, every length of circular needle.
um, we'll get started right on that.
let's go ahead and take a look first at my swatch.
i give instructions for knitting this in the pattern because it has a garter stitch border
and it just turned out to be such a beautiful swatch.
it was beautiful before i even blocked it.
the stitches just came out so evenly.
and looking at this, and seeing how nice the stitches look, this is a good argument for
using luxury yarn, at least sometimes.
also with this yarn, um, the cashmere does what is called "blooming".
it blooms as you knit with it.
the yarn looks really plain and just like a regular worsted yarn until it passes through
then the cashmere fluffs out, or that's what blooming is.
it fluffs out, or blooms a little bit, and it gives just barely a halo on the knitted
and when i say luxury yarns, i guess maybe i should explain this a little bit.
i would say, if you don't want to use the yarn that i used here, another cashmere blend
would be fine, of course.
or a merino, or an alpaca would also add a nice halo to the finished piece.
okay, let's look at an ideal situation here with getting started.
these are 16" circular needles.
and i happen to have an interchangeable set, which i am really glad i invested in.
and it's an interchangeable set where the needle tips are really short, you see this
they're really short to accomidate the really short 16" needle.
i'll give you a link to this Knitter's Pride needle set in the video description below.
it wasn't very expensive, and it ended up being a pretty good investment.
and so to get started on the pattern, with 16" circular needles, it's really easy.
and it's just a matter of joining in the round.
and please note, i'm using much bigger needles and much bulkier yarn than the pattern calls
for, so that you can see what i'm doing.
so i cast on my stitches, and i used the long tail cast on i'll give you a link to this
cast on method here on screen if you're not familiar with it.
just kind of a standard cast on.
i'm going to make sure that all of the knots from the cast on are on the inside of this
loop, so it's not twisted.
i'm going to get my working yarn on the outside.
grab a stitch marker, put it on the right needle.
make sure the stitches are all close to the tip of the needle.
and not twisted.
and then just start knitting.
i don't do anything fancy when i join.
and the first part of this pattern is garter stitch.
but because we're knitting it in the round, it's knit a row, purl a row, knit a row, purl
so you see here that i am joined, and every time i come up to the stitch marker it will
count as one round.
something i want to show you.
you see here that i do have a gap at the join.
this is not an issue, unless it's really huge.
in subsequent rounds, this will disappear.
okay? so that is an ideal world, where everyone has 16" circulars.
let's get started on this with 32" circulars.
so you see, my stitches here are never going to fit around on a cord this long.
that's where magic loop comes in!
i have the same number of stitches cast on as i did for the short needles.
the first thing i want to do is find a spot somewhere kind of in the middle of the stitches.
it does not matter.
and pull the cord long, right there.
so that your stitches all end up close to the tip of the needle.
and i'm going to get them very close to the tip of the needle.
and now i want to make sure that nothing is twisted.
and i can see that all of my knots are facing down.
the working yarn is coming from the back needle.
and the needles are facing to the right.
this is the magic loop starting position.
you get youself into this position, and magic loop is a breeze from here on out.
so extra cord is hanging here, needles facing to the right, working yarn coming from the
grab the back needle and pull it long.
now i have cord coming from two different spots.
i'm going to push the stitches very close to the tip of the left needle.
whoops! i forgot my stitch marker!
my stitch marker goes there.
and i grab the working yarn, and not the tail.
and the first stitch is a little bit tricky, when you're starting, working in the round.
put my needle in, grab it, wrap it, and pull it through.
and then really give it a tug to eliminate the drag between the two stitches.
and you're off!
and you're going to have to wait for me to knit through this, half of the row, so i can
show you what to do next.
the little metal stitch marker is hitting the paper.
okay, so i've reached the end of this half, and there are no more stithes for me to work
on the left needle.
so, i essentially turn the work.
and get myself back into the magic loop starting position.
which is to get the needles both facing to the right, both tips close together, stitches
close to the tip of the left needle.
and then, just like i did before, i pull the back needle long, and then get going again.
and this one is going to be easier to start because i'm not joining in the round this
and that's it!
that's how you work magic loop.
let me try to make this visually a little easier to understand.
i have extra cord coming out of two sides, and my stitches are kind of in the middle,
as i work across.
once you get the hang of it, it's pretty easy.
next up we're going to go over make 1 stitches, and cable stitches, and counting cable rows.
once you get past the neck border, which is just knit a row, purl a row, that's when you
start the "meat" of the poncho.
and really, things stay the same - they don't change much from the neck border down to the
bottom of the poncho.
there are really just a few things you have to learn.
and one of those is make 1 stitches.
and i know the first question i'm going to get from somebody about this pattern is "can
i use a different increase".
well, yes you can.
but i specifically chose make 1s for this because they are the most invisible.
and using make 1 left and make 1 right stitches does make - i like the way the mirror increases
look on this.
it ends up being part of the desgin.
and not just part of the structure of the whole thing.
you can use a different increase, and you might even really like the way it looks, with
the yarn that you're using and everythign else.
or you could also consider this a really good opporutnity to get good at make 1 stitches.
let's go ahead and take a look at the little sample i have.
this is obviously a bulky sample, knit on huge needles.
and knit flat and not in the round.
but it is an exact copy of what the back of the poncho looks like.
right here we have - it's not exact, because it's knit flat, so these stitches don't look
quite as nice as they do in the poncho, since it's knit in the round.
but these are knit through the back loops, which gives a ridge in the work, and i'll
show you another example here in just a moment.
and then the stitches kind of grow out from there at an angle, because of the increases.
and every time -well, the pattern, of course, spells this all out.
let me just get to the spot where we can do some make 1 stitches.
the very center back of the poncho is the beginning of the round.
and every time you come up, well, follow the pattern, when you come to an increase row,
you'll knit to one stitch from the marker, and we want to do a make 1 right on this side
of the marker.
and a make 1 left on this side of the marker.
because they lean, and we want it to be decorative.
to do a make 1 right, you want to pick up the bar between two stitches.
and it's pretty obvious, it's right there.
this is bulky yarn, but it's still pretty obvious when you're doing it in the poncho
with the size needles and the yarn that we have there.
so i'm going to pick this up from back to front wtih the left needle.
from back to front.
and i actually am more coordinated with my right hand.
i usually pick it up wtih my left needle, and hand it over - backwards!
i pick it up with my RIGHT needle, and hand it to my left needle.
so that's how it's going to be looped over the needle.
we're going to knit this through the front loop, the normal way of knitting.
which is tricky. make 1 stitches can be tricky because you have to put a twist on the stitch
to keep there from being a hole.
so i'm going to knit this through the front loop like this.
and that is a completed make 1 right.
let me show you one more time.
make 1 right is picking up the bar between two stitches from back to front.
and then knitting it through the front loop.
and one thing to make it easier - two things to make it easier.
first one is, you can use needles with pretty sharp tips that will make it easier to get
the needle in there.
or what i do is i use my index finger and create some slack on that stitch to give my
needle some room.
okay, so that's a make 1 right.
then i'm going to knit this through the back loop.
slip the marker, knit the next one through the back loop.
and then i'm ready to do a make 1 left.
here again is the bar between two stitches.
i'm going to pick this one up from front to back.
front to back.
and then i'm going to knit it through the back loop, back here.
it's difficult to get your needle in, so this is what i always do.
i put it through the front loop, and flop it over.
i'll show you again.
i put it through the front loop, which is totally easy, and just slide my needle over
but if you have, you can also just create some slack on there and get your needle in
these needles are not very sharp.
there we go.
so i'm knitting that one through the back loop.
the secret to make 1 stitches is if it's easy to get your needle in there, you're probably
not doing it correctly.
let me show you an example.
this is not a spot in the pattern that requires a make 1 stitch, i'm just going to show you
this for example.
i'm going to pick up the bar from the back to the front, to do a make 1 right.
and i should be knitting that through the front loop.
but if i knit it through the back loop, which is totally easy to get my needle in there.
it leaves an enormous hole, that you don't want.
so, the secret to make 1 stitches, if you are having a really easy time getting your
needle in there, you probably need to take a close look at what you're going.
probably leaving a big hole in your work, and not the right way of going about it.
this is a little bit of the poncho finished, so i can show you exactly what a round looks
this again is done on bulky needles, these are not the correct numbers for the pattern.
this is just a sample to show the techniques.
i'm going to get myself up t the beginning of the round here.
and i always - whoops! that's a knit through the back loop.
and i always use a different stitch marker to mark the beginning of the round.
i have the tail hanging here which can remind me.
but i always use a black stitch marker, that's just my thing.
anything different will do, though.
so at the beginning of the round, i'm going to do a knit through the back loop.
and then, because the row that i'm on, i'm going to do an increase row for you, i'm going
to do a make 1 left.
so i pick up the bar from the back to the front, and knit it through the back loop.
and then i'm going to knit up to the next marker.
the setup row after the neck border will tell you where to place all these markers.
because we're going to get to the gentle shoulder shaping.
and when i get up to this next marker, i'm going to do a make 1 right.
which is picking up the bar from the back to the front, and knitting through the front
and then slipping the marker from the left needle to the right.
i'm going to knit up to the next marker.
these next two markers are both - this one and this one are the two orange ones there,
these are both shoulder shaping markers.
and this is all spelled out clearly in the pattern.
slip that marker, and now i want to do a make 1 left.
so i pick it up from front to back, and knit through the back loop.
and then the next marker i come up to is the beginning of the cable pattern on the front
of the sweater.
sweaters have sleeves.
and the rows for the cable are all clearly spelled out in the pattern, i'm going to show
you quickly how easy cables are to work.
this is another increase spot, so i'm going to do another make 1 right.
picking up the bar between the stitches from back to front.
knitting through the front loop.
slipping the needle from the left needle to the right.
and then really the only thing you have to know about - you know what i don't have is
my cable needle.
cables look twisted, because they actually are.
there we go.
i'm sure that noise was unpleasant, i'm sorry.
so i have my cable needle.
cable needles come in all shapes and sizes.
i like these little short wood needles that are a little bit thinner in the middle, a
little bit thicker on the outside edge.
it's so you can slide stitches on there and let it hang, and it won't fall out.
these are my favorite ones.
i'll give you a link to these needles, i think they're available on Amazon.
i'm going to slide three stitches to the cable needle, and they're held securely there.
and put that in the back of the work.
then knit three stitches from the left needle.
and go back, and knit the three stitches from the cable needle.
that's all cables are!
you just put a few stitches on the cable needle, ignore them, and then knit them.
and that's all a cable is.
and the cable pattern is an 8 row repeat.
you will need to keep count with a row counter to make sure you're on the right row for the
the only difference in the two different cable twists we have is sometimes you put three
stitches on the cable needle, the first three stitches.
and sometimes you put the last three stitches on the cable needle.
that's the only difference.
or the middle three stitches on the cable needle, that's all in the pattern.
that is the trick to working a cable.
let me get past these cable stitches, and then i want to show you one more thing.
slip the marker, and do a make 1 left.
okay, i'm going to do something terrifying.
i hope you're all sitting down.
oh, also - i have this clip here.
when i first started the cable, i wanted to make sure i knew, with all of these markers
going on, which was the cable twist.
now that i have a couple of inches here it's easy to see, but it was helpful.
okay, i hope you're sitting down.
this is going to terrify everybody.
i'm taking all these stitches off the needle.
so i can show you exactly what you're seeing.
exactly what it looks like while you're working through this.
so that you can be sure you're on track.
stitch markers flying everywhere.
this is pretty fun, really.
reckless abandon! i think that's what this is called.
it was hard to see when it was on the needle, that's why i'm doing this.
okay, here is the back center of the poncho.
you see we have these prominent knit through the back stitches.
and the stitches seem to be growing out of this spine because of the increases.
and we get a natural shape to the neck border because of the increases here.
you travel along.
here we have more increase stitches.
this is the gentle shoulder shaping.
that happens in the poncho.
okay, then we travel along.
and we have the cable stitches.
and we have more stitches growing out from the cable, because there are more increases
on the sides of the cable.
we travel along, we have more shoulder shaping to match the other side.
and then we're back at the back center of the poncho.
you're going to follow your pattern.
of course, the shoulder shaping doesn't go on forever.
after, well, i don't know how many rows. it's all listed in the pattern.
after you finish the shoulder shaping, the pattern will tell you to remove those markers,
and then you just knit straight past there without any more increases.
that is really the bulk of how to work this!
it really isn't very complicated.
and next up, i'm going to show you how to attach a new ball of yarn, and measure for
a new ball of yarn, a few different things.
obviously, this poncho has a lot of fabric to it and you're going to use multiple balls
of yarn to finish it.
and the yarn that i used came in 50 gram balls which aren't very big.
so i had to attach new balls of yarn frequently to get through the whole thing.
now with a cashmere merino blend like this is, i would normally recommend spit splicing.
which is a way of cutting, attaching a new ball of yarn by felting one end to the other.
and i'll give you a link right here to my spit splicing video, because, depending on
the yarn you use, that might be the right choice for you.
i found that with this yarn, the yarn is really so smooth and the stitches are so even, that
the areas that i spit spliced together showed in the work.
and so i actually ended up ripping back and cutting that out and attaching a new ball
of yarn the old fashioned way.
old fashioned way? i don't know. [laughs]
but i tied knots with a new ball of yarn instead of spit splicing.
i'm going to show you how to attach a new ball of yarn that way, but first, i want to
show you how to measure.
you are going to want to attach a new ball of yarn at one of the stitch markers.
and once you get down to the bigger parts of the poncho, there is a long way between
the only stitch markers you have left, which are the very back center, and the front center,
the cable, of the sweater.
so you want to make sure you have enough yarn to get from where ever you are to the next
otherwise you're going to get half way there and have to tink back to the marker before
to attach a new ball of yarn.
do you see what i'm saying?
you don't ever want to attach a new ball of yarn in a sea of stockinette.
because that will show.
there's enough going on with the increases and the cable and everything, that a new ball
of yarn will be hidden in the marker.
now this is what i do.
you saw me in the last segment, i tore all this off the needles, so this isn't a viable
sample to use anymore!
but what i do when i'm knitting around and i want to make sure i have enough yarn to
hit the next marker.
when i start to get low on yarn, before it's an emergency, i start to get low on yarn,
i measure how much yarn i need to get to the next marker.
and it's going to be increasing as you move along, because you're increasing the whole
so this is what i do.
i measure from nose to fingertip, and depending on how far i am down in the pattern, i might
measure three times nose to fingertip.
and i put a slip knot in right there to mark it.
and sometimes i put a clippie marker in there too, if i'm worried that the slip knot is
going to come out.
you can use feet or inches or centimeters or whatever to measure this, but if you're
comfortable in your knitting chair, you just need a unit of measurement, and nose to fingertip
is a unit of measurement.
so then i do that at a marker, i knit up to the next marker, and i see how far i am from
the slip knot.
let's say that i ended up knitting to here, and the slip knot is here.
i would say that i need three measurements, nose to fingertip, to be safe to get to the
so that's how i know.
and i will do that with each ball of yarn, since the amount's going to be increasing
each time, it's a simple thing.
and if i knit and it was well past the slip knot that i left, i would say okay, i need
four nose to fingertip measurements.
and then i'll know if i need to stop there and attach a new ball of yarn.
i can measure the yarn that i have in the ball to see if i have enough to get me to
the next marker.
it will be a lot easier for you with the measurement thing if your yarn looks good with spit splicing.
but this is a safe way to go about it if you don't.
okay, now i'm going to show you how to attach a new ball of yarn at the marker.
let's go ahead and take a look.
we had to go back to using this sample because i took everything else off the needles!
there is actually a marker right here.
and i knit right up to that marker, and we're going to pretend that i'm out of yarn.
just very conveniently, perfect amount right there.
and i have my new ball of yarn here.
i'm right at the marker.
this first stitch is a knit through the back loop.
i am going to fold my yarn over, leaving about a six inch tail, and make a loop out of that.
wrap the needle with that and pull it through.
i am attached.
that is how i attach it.
then i always look to the other side of my work.
and take the two short ends, and tie a knot.
and as long as your stitches are on the needle and not on the cord, the circular cord, these
stitches will stay a nice size.
and they won't scrinch down, even if you tie a tight knot.
so the new ball of yarn is attached.
you will not even be able to tell that it's there because of the knit through the back
loop stitches at the marker.
this is the area you want to avoid attaching a new ball of yarn.
because this is just so even and smooth, to attach a new ball of yarn or have any disruption
to the sea of stockinette is really pretty obvious.
well, that's it! i think we've covered everything you need to know to knit this poncho.
i hope you have a really good time making it!