Knitting Tutorial – Zen Yarn Garden Plumo Gradient Scarf

Knitting Tutorial – Zen Yarn Garden Plumo Gradient Scarf


In this video, we’re going to cover the techniques
used in the scarf that I’m wearing right now. It’s called the Plumo Gradient Scarf and it’s
brought to us by Zen Yarn Garden, both the tutorial and the free pattern. If you’d like to get your copy of the pattern
to follow along, just click the little “i” in the upper right-hand corner. That will take you to my website where I also
have a link to the Zen Yarn Garden gradient kits. And the gradient kits are what I used in designing
this pattern. The yarn used is super wash, meaning it can
be washed, machine washed, and super fine merino. So it’s double super. It’s fingering weight yarn and there are 18
different colors available in the gradient kits. So be sure to click through and take a look. These are the colors that I used in mine. They’re kind of denim colors. From dark blue to light blue, and here is
black to light grey, and this is the one that’s gonna get everybody excited. Berry colors, and plum to lavender kind of. I love it when someone else picks the colors
of yarn for me because I love it especially when it’s dyed to match. It’s very exciting. This is just a small sample. There are 18 different colors available. I’m going to put this pattern at an advanced
beginner level. If you’re comfortable with knitting and purling,
we’re going to cover everything else. And the stitch used in this is a feather and
fan stitch. And I talk a lot in videos about bang for
your buck. This is a good bang for your buck stitch because
it looks really complicated, it looks like you’ve…your knitting skills are just amazing,
but it’s really easy to work and I’ll give you a closeup look of the feather and fan
stitch. So it’s light summer knitting, beautiful hand-dyed
yarns in these gradient colors. Just click the little eye to go to my website
where I’ll have links to everything. Your free pattern, the materials you’ll need
for knitting it, and next up we’re going to get started with the scarf. We are ready to get started with this scarf,
if you’ve got your yarn and your free pattern. You can really use any needles that you want
for this. I am going to use circular needles and you’ll
see why. Because I’m gonna string some lifelines in
there to make this fool proof. Absolutely fool proof. And circular needles make that a little bit
easier and you’ll see why. But you can use straight needles or circulars. Totally up to you. I recommend that you use needles that have
a decently sharp point on them because of all the knit two togethers. So really blunt needles, you can still use
them, but you’ll have an easier time with sharper needles. Okay, let’s go ahead and take a look at this
bang for the buck stitch. Here is the feather and fan stitch and it
looks, you see, it looks like there’s so much going on, but there’s really only one row
out of four that you have to pay attention to. So the way that this gradient…the gradient
colors work in this is we start with the lighter color, lalalalalala, and then we alternate
stripes of lighter and the medium color, and then we move into the medium color, alternate
stripes of the medium and darker color, and finish up with the darker color. And I designed this because you can see in
the pattern photo, that I wanted the two ends that were hanging in front to be the lightest
and the darkest color, with the medium color around the back of my neck. Anyway, that’s how that looks. And so we’ll get started on this. It’s mostly just four rows repeated over and
over again. And so we’re gonna talk about those. When you’re knitting it, anytime you’re knitting
lace, it’s going to look like this until you block it or steam it or something. And I wanted to show you this example so that
you don’t start to feel like something’s wrong with yours. Because until it’s blocked, it’s always kind
of a crumpled mess. This is what it looks like once it’s had some
steam applied to it and this is the curly little mess that it is until then. So the first two rows of the pattern are just
knit and purl. And now we’re going to get into the pattern…oh
let’s talk about checking gauge first. What I have here is a little sample that is
half as wide as the finished scarf. And the finished scarf, let me double check
this, I think it’s 10 inches wide. It’s nine inches wide. So what you can do is there really isn’t much
of a need to check gauge. You can just cast on and start knitting a
little bit and then measure by stretching it out so that you can really see the lace. And if when you stretch it out, you’re getting
something close to nine inches, then your gauge is right on. If you’re stretching it out and you’re getting
something much wider, you probably wanna use a smaller needle, or much narrower you probably
wanna use a larger needle. But as long as you’re close to nine inches
when you stretch it out and look at it, you should be good. And I’ve allowed a little leeway in the pattern,
so if your gauge is a little off you’ll still have plenty of yarn. That shouldn’t be a problem with running out
of yarn. Okay. So I have worked rows one and two in this,
and so we’re ready to get started on the action row, which is row three. And I’ve got a marker placed these…again,
this is half of the scarf, but this is one pattern repeat and this is another pattern
repeat. So I’m gonna do it twice here. So we start with three knit two togethers. One, two, three. And if you need a review of knit two together,
I’ll give you a link to that video right now. Okay, and now we’re going to do six knit one
yarn over. It’s two stitches. Knit one, yarn over. Knit one, yarn over six times. So we decreased three stitches here. We’re going to increase six stitches here. Knit one, yarn over. Knit one, yarn over. Okay, I had to double check to make sure I
did six of those because I was talking. And then we finish off this pattern repeat
with three knit two togethers. And so the stitch count never changes. It’s always 18 stitches between the markers. Okay, let me see if I could do this. I’m gonna try continental because people who
knit continental always want me to show yarn overs. You know why better than knit two togethers
this way. Let me do this first. Three knit two togethers
and then, this is not my primary way of knitting so don’t laugh at me. I wanna do knit one, yarn over. And to do that continental, you just kind
of loop the yarn around the right needle. Knit one, yarn over. I should practice this way more. Okay, and now I have three knit two togethers. So we can talk about what we just did there. Starting here at the beginning, this is where
all the decreases happen, this is where all the yarn over increases happen, and then we
go back to decreases. And that’s what gives us this open lacey pattern
in the middle, the fan section. And the…I guess the feather section is here
with the decreases, but when it all lines up, the effect is really nice. Now, I wanna show you…I wanna talk about
working the next row because if you haven’t worked lace before, you might be intimidated
by…you might not be intimated, but confused by what the yarn overs look like on the other
side. And this is a knit row. Row four’s a knit row. Knit three, and the first stitch I come up
to is a yarn over. It’s not a real stitch. It doesn’t have a knot under it, but you work
it just like any other stitch just the same. The only thing I suggest is if you have a
yarn over in your work and the phone rings, don’t set your work down because that can
just like fall off the needle pretty easily, and then you’ll forget it’s there. So work that stitch and then answer the phone,
or just let ’em leave a message. My trick at home is to get through the yarn
overs, knitting through the yarn overs before like the puppy wakes up or something. So that’s just…that’s the important thing
about this row four is to pay attention to the yarn overs, they don’t look like real
stitches, but they count. Okay, and as a safeguard, if you’ve never
worked lace before and you’re worried about messing up, I wanna talk a little bit about
lifelines. You may have been wondering what this white
thing is in my work here. And this is just, this is not part of the
gradient set, this is just some fingering weight yarn in a different color that I’m
using for a lifeline. First, I’m gonna show you how to string a
lifeline. So I’m gonna grab a piece, if I can find the
end. Grab a piece of this yarn and a tapestry needle. And this is what I call a proactive lifeline. I haven’t made a mistake yet, but I’m setting
myself up for easy recovery of my stitches in case I do make a mistake. So this is where circular needle will come
in handy. I’ve slid the stitches over to the cord and
leaves me a little bit of room so that I can string the tapestry needle through all of
the stitches. When you get to the stitch marker, go around
it, not through it. You’ll thank me later. Okay, once you have that in there, that is
your lifeline. That is your safety line in case you mess
up. You always wanna do it after row four so you
know where you are. In case you mess up, you can rip back to this
place and recover the stitches really easily. And I’m gonna show you how to do that. Okay, let’s say, I’m doing lifelines every
five pattern repeats. So one, two, three, four, five. Put one in. Now, we’ll pretend I didn’t put that lifeline
in and I see that I have a mistake, you know, somewhere two rows back. So I’m gonna take my needle out without worrying
because I’ve got my lifeline. We’re gonna pretend I didn’t put that one
in. Okay, so I have my lifeline down here. I’m gonna rip up to there. Rip out below the mistake that I made. Oh, something I didn’t mention, after you
string the lifeline, you work the next row as if the lifeline isn’t there. You just don’t let it get in your way. Okay, so now I ripped it out to the lifeline. All of these stitches are very safely held
on the white yarn. No prob. And I can just take my needle or I can also
use a smaller needle if I have like a smaller needle to use. I can do that, but this works fine. And I just run my needle back through those
stitches, picking ’em back up. No problem. I’m not worried about anything unraveling. Because if stuff did unravel, it would be
tricky with the yarn overs and the knit two togethers to get it back on the needle. But this is easy. This one’s a little hard to pick up. Just pull the white yarn until the stitch
comes out. There we go. Just do what you gotta do. Anyway, once they’re all back on there, I
recommend leaving the lifeline in, no need to rip it out. Leave it in there and keep going in case you
have to rip back again. Okay, so the last part of this segment, we’re
gonna talk about carrying the colors or attach the new yarn and carrying the colors. So to attach a new color of yarn, first of
all I’ll show you that. I don’t need to attach that in the pattern
right now. I’m just going to do it because. I put…let me try this again. I put my needle in. I grab the new color of yarn that I want to
use. I fold it over, leaving like a six inch tail
and then just pop it on the back needle that I’ve already put into the stitch and pull
it through. And that is the new yarn attached. You can just work from there with the new
color of yarn. And then I will also tie the tail end of the
yarn to the other color that I have going just to secure it in a tidy little knot. But I don’t need to attach it because I already
have two colors attached right now. So this is how you can carry the color up
the side…the two colors up the side of the work without cutting the yarn every time you
change color. It saves a lot of weaving in ends. So right now, I’m ready to switch back to
the darker blue, and to get the twist of the yarn the same, running all the way up the
work. I’m always going to pull the new color from
under the old color like this. You don’t have to do it that way, just be
consistent with how you pull it up and you’ll end up with a really nice looking edge. And so, I’m going to just knit across with
that. I can take a look at my tension there on the
edge, it looks good. You wanna make sure you don’t pull that first
stitch too tightly because it can bunch up the work. But we’re working with a really nice wool
yarn here. So if you do end up with a little bit of tension
issue on the edge, it’s kind of okay. It should block out just fine with this beautiful
wool. Okay, I’m working row one here of the stripes,
and I wanna work two rows here to show you how to catch the yarn. Catch the other color. [00:16:27] [Silence] [00:16:42] I’m purling this row. You know, I normally don’t knit over a table
like this. You might be able to hear the cord against
the blocking board. [00:16:59] [Silence] [00:17:31] We’re almost there. Okay now, I’m back to the right side of the
work here and I want to catch the other color that I’m not using. I still have two more rows to go in this dark
blue, but I want to catch this other yarn. So I’m going to pull the dark yarn from under
the lighter color of yarn, the older color of yarn. And then, start using it. And all I’ve done is just kind of get this
lighter color of yarn wrapped up in the other color. So it helps carry it up the side. And then that’s all you do. That’s just it. Let me show you that one more time. I’ve got the dark here that I’m still using. And the other one, I wanna catch this lighter
one. So I go under that, grab the color I’m using,
and then start knitting with that. And it just caught up this color to help carry
it up the side of the work. Those are really all the techniques used in
knitting this. I tell you it looks like a lot, but it’s really
not that hard. Next up we’re going to talk about finishing
work, blocking, stuff like that. Once you’ve finished knitting your scarf,
you want to block it out. And really anytime that you want, while you’re
knitting it, you can always apply some steam to it and smooth that out a little bit so
you can see the lace. I always do that. I just like to see the way it looks while
I’m knitting it, but you can do that with an iron. Just blast steam into it without pressing
down with the iron. You know, get it steamy and hot and then pat
it out, so you can see what it looks like. There’s no need to do that. It’s just kind of fun, I think. But after you’ve totally finished knitting,
you’re going to want to block it. And this is super wash yarn, so you can machine
wash it. Personally, I think it’s easy enough just
to wash it in the sink with some wool wash. Plus, wool wash smells so good. A little bit of cool water in the sink, a
little bit of wool soap. Put your scarf in there and squish it around
to really get the wool into the fibers and then let it sit for 20 or 30 minutes. And then take your scarf out of the water
and squeeze, not wring, of course, squeeze it while it’s wet and then take a bath towel. Put the scarf in the bath towel and roll it
up like a burrito and then step all over it. And that will squish out a lot of the water. And then you’re ready to set it out and block
it. And I blocked this on my bed because it’s
a long scarf. I didn’t have enough room on a blocking board
or an ironing board to do it, but I’ll tell you these colors were perfectly color fast. There was no color bleeding in the water or
even on my white quilt when I set this out to block. No color bleeding at all. So that’s nice. Isn’t it? Okay, let’s talk about the specifics about
blocking this so that it looks its best. Let’s take a look. Okay. At this one end, both ends, we have this scalped
edge and while it’s wet you can pull these points out. I’m telling you I did this right in the quilt,
no problem. Pull these points out and even exaggerate
’em a little bit because they’ll shrink back up when it’s totally dry. And you can use your measuring tape to make
sure that you’re getting this nine inches across. And let it dry like that with the points pulled
really hard and then they will shrink back up, but you’ll still have that really nice
shape. And then when you get to the stripe section
of the scarf, there is no shaping in the stripes, but it’s the shaping above and below that
gives these waves. But you can help them along a little bit. This is the method that I came up with for
this. Take two fingers and pull down and up. Just a little push with your fingers like
this to exaggerate the waves while it drys. And then, let it dry like that and it’ll hold. It will stay just like it is. The waves are there, even when it’s wet, but
you can exaggerate them and let them dry that way. And then, it’s just a matter of setting it
out so that it’s even and straight. The whole length of the scarf, and it dries
pretty quickly. I was surprised. I set it out flat to dry and I didn’t even
remember to turn on the ceiling fan in my bedroom when it was drying. And I had the back door open. And it was really humid outside, but it was
still dry within a couple of hours. So I was surprised about that. Anyway, those are all the techniques used
in making this scarf. I hope you’d give it a try. Many thanks to Zen Yarn Garden for sponsoring
this video and the free pattern. Be sure to click through my website and take
a look at the gradient color sets that Zen Yarn Garden is dying just for these. Good luck. [00:22:34] [music] [00:23:04]

54 thoughts on “Knitting Tutorial – Zen Yarn Garden Plumo Gradient Scarf

  1. Ooh, another pattern that I NEED to try ๐Ÿ˜ and you are the only other knitter I know , who steps on the towel to dry the item for blocking ! ( I knew I wasn't crazy )

  2. I use crochet thread, through the key holes in the needles. Knit the row, pull the needle far enough to get the thread, unthread the hole, and voila! Lifeline! If you don't use markers that can be opened, then you will have to be careful, when you get to the marker, to be sure it's not caught on the lifeline. LOVE this pattern. I really need to get out more, so I can wear pretty things. THANKS!

  3. I like the purple/lavender yarn
    What kind of yarn is that sitting on your white shelf behind you?
    Continental knitting looks hard but then again I am not left handed…๐Ÿ’œ your videos

  4. That's a very beautiful scarf..thank you Staci! ๐Ÿ™‚ I was wondering…after you rip out to the lifeline do you use the yarn all "wrinkled" like that or do you straighten it out?

  5. Some interchangeable needles have a little hole. They say it's for threading a lifeline. Have you ever done that? The hole is very small.

  6. Ooh!!! So pretty! And thanks for showing the yarn overs in continental style ๐Ÿ˜ŠI'm choosing between Royale or Nova Platina needles for my 16" needles, do you have a preference? Also, the Royale needles apparently have a tiny hole on the tip that can be used for stringing a lifeline. Have you ever done I that way and do you find the hole catches on the yarn? Thanks, Miss Bee

  7. I knit but at the moment I'm doing crochet. Making a blanket using the ripple pattern…hum…I'm thinking I could crochet in a ripple pattern for a scarf. Your color sequence is beautiful n so is that yarn ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š thanks Stacie๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ

  8. hi when you took the needle out then the life line i just about shouted NO you are one brave cookie claudette
    p.s i am trying to get the courage to try it

  9. So pretty!
    What kind of blocking board do you have there? I do a lot of filet crochet projects and a board exactly like what you're using would be so handy!!

  10. This is going to be a wonderful Christmas gift for my DIL. Looks easy, fancy, and fast!
    Always, much thanks to you, Staci!

  11. This is gorgeous! I question calling this feather and fan, though. I've always known this as old shale, in an 18 stitch repeat, whereas feather and fan is a 14 stitch repeat with an obvious "quill" in the middle of the feather. Have a great day, and thanks for the beautiful colorways! <3

  12. Haha, that's great about the puppy! I have to schedule any complicated bits of knitting around my dogs, I can't even imagine knitting with little kids around.

  13. I have a gigantic lace shawl I knitted for my sister in law. We have a very small house and there is no surface as big as that shawl available that isn't being used. Is it possible to block something half at a time?

  14. I plan on making this scarf once i'm done with my previous scarf but i'm unsure of what kind of yarn/needle size i should use? it looks like the yarn your using isn't the typical worsted (4 ply?) yarn so is there any specific weight/type of yarn i should use? i can't really afford to buy 60$ worth of yarn so i was hoping to find a cheaper equivalent at a Craft store.
    I absolutely love your tutorials. ^^

  15. Hey Stacy, this is lovely, but how do you finish off the last stitch? I was taught to pass the yarn through the final loop but this pretty much always leaves a huge knot, which for lace type patterns like this is not easily hidden. Others have suggested just pulling the yarn up but this has made me lose stitches โ˜น๏ธ would love to know your thoughts thanks

  16. Hi Stacy! I love your scarf. I ordered the same color way as the one you made. Very hard decision. I think all of the color sets are beautiful. I agree with you though. I love when they choose the colors for you. Thank you for the free pattern also.

  17. I've sent Yen Gardens an email about yarn availability in Europe, I really like the 'bang for your buck!' Thank you ๐ŸŒธ

  18. I LOVE this scarf! Almost done making mine, I think I can do old shale in my sleep now, lol. Thanks for being amazing!

  19. Hi Staci I switch back and forth between cont. and american….so your continental is still good nothing to laugh at…. I and gonna try this pattern……Love your Videos…..:)

  20. hi love your channel……Question I started this project and it gauge out to 9 1/2. Is that ok? I don't want to start over….I don't have a smaller needle at this time.

  21. I unintentionally purchased gradient set with four skeins. Would appreciate hints on how to tweak the pattern for four colors. Or a recommendation for a pattern that would work with the four skein set. In the meantime, I've ordered the three skein set and still waiting for delivery.

  22. This scarf looks amazing! I definitely need to try this pattern out, I see a lot of gradient set colors that my friends and I would love to wear! Thanks for a great tutorial- I am still new to knitting and find these incredibly helpful and I'm learning so much just watching you!

  23. I'm a beginner but decided to tackle this project and thrilled with the end results. I went up a needle size for the bind off but found the project finished somewhat tight and with little scalloped edge. Even with wet blocking, the scallops were minimal. Suggestions for future projects will be appreciated.

  24. Hey Stacy.. i am just a beginner at knitting.. i knit real tightly.. so it becomes difficult for me to K2tog.. i always try to knit a little loosely but always fail.. will you please suggest me what should I do to make my knitting loose..

    Will be waiting for your reply..
    And thank you in advance..

  25. Hi Stacy. Thank you so much for the lovely videos, patterns and good advice. You are awesome. I have learned so much from you. You are an expert and a very good teacher. Very grateful to learn from you.

  26. THANK YOU! I can't wait to try this pattern out. Glad you mentioned how to catch the yarn so you don't have to cut and weave in a bunch of ends later.

  27. You are so good at finding nice projects and SO good at teaching how to do them!
    I'm 71 and am learning to knit from YOU.
    I can't tell you how much pleasure your teaching has given me.

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