Stay-at-Home Auxiliary Mitered Square Scarf, Day 1.

Okay! This is the official start. The instructions below make your first mitered square—which will be the starting point for the entire scarf. For materials, gauge, suggested needles, etc., see Day 0.

Begin Work.
First Mitered Square (Make 1).

Using the cable cast-on method, cast on 61 sts.
Row 1 (RS). sl1, k remaining.
Row 2. sl1, k29, p1, k to end of row.
Placing a removable stitch marker on the purled middle stitch is optional. The purled stitch is referred to later as the middle stitch.
Row 3. sl1, k to 1 before middle st, s2kpo, k to end of row (2 sts dec) 59 sts remain.
Row 4. sl1, k to middle st, p middle st, k to end of row.

Repeat Rows 3 & 4 until 5 sts remain, ending with a Row 4 repeat.

Row 5 (Bind Off). sl1, s2kpo, slip previous st over, k1, slip previous st over.
Do not break yarn.
Leave last st on needle.

This is sort of what the first mitered square should look like after the first few rows, but less linen-y, especially if you’re making it out of wool.

The Stay-at-Home Auxiliary’s Mitered Square Scarf

So, there’s a pandemic going on, and it is so far beyond my pay grade that I essentially have very little ability to even acknowledge it here. It’s hard to be flippant about it, and there is no solemn official stance to take with knitting patterns. (We’re doing everything we can to reduce risk by changing nothing! Enjoy instant curbside e-delivery of all .PDFs! If you go and stand by a curb, I guess!) Personally, I am having a lot of angst and not focusing very well, but that only bears mentioning because it means I am pretty much entirely off doing the type of small domestic things that theoretically ought to alleviate some of the psychological pressure. It makes it ridiculously hard to knit a thing, and describe knitting a thing in an effective way.

I had the idea for this scarf a while ago, but have generally been succumbing to morale problems and not working fast, so I’ve decided to launch it early as a very casual knitalong with no accountability, before my sample is done. It could be worthwhile; it could be an amazing trainwreck. But I think I’m at a sort of now or never point with it.

  • It’s not done yet. I was working on a different design with similar elements, but there is no final photo. It’s a MysTeRy KnItAlOnG. (It isn’t. Those are usually well-planned from what I understand.)
  • It’s made up of little (well, big, for mitered squares) mitered squares.
  • It’s a scarf. It ends up being a pretty long scarf. I am working without a measuring tape, bro. But I did the math.
  • Oh no

So with that being said, please join the Stay-at-Home Auxiliary‘s Campaign to Not Destroy All Humans, and enjoy this free pattern for a scarf!

The Stay-at-Home Auxiliary Mitered Square Scarf will consist primarily of 14 large mitered squares, knit together as you go, to minimize loose yarn-ends as much as possible. Gather up your DK scraps and partial skeins, don’t go out,* and knit a square a day to count off two weeks. Or knit the whole scarf, relentlessly, all in one or two sittings. I am not really here to tell you how to knit. I mean, I am here to tell you how to knit a scarf, but not how to knit while you knit it.

This pattern is offered as a free, serialized pattern to help pass the time while we’re all avoiding each other because of how we like each other.

(It won’t be a very complicated mystery knitalong. There are really only three parts.)

*You could also order in from your LYS, in order to support small yarn shops, while observing all precautions. But scraps are good, and that’s what I’ll be using for this very informal knitalong. I think they originally came from The Loopy Ewe in Colorado, which I kind of regard as my foster LYS, because they’re not really local to me, but they are kind of, if you feel like you have a pretty big range under ideal conditions.

Fun Horrible Fact: as mentioned above, I’ve also never done anything with mitered squares before, and I’m launching this as a knitalong, in stages, before my project is completely done—so this really does have an entertaining potential to really go badly wrong. (As of this writing, I’m working a few days ahead.)

Gauge is not too important for this project, but will affect total yardage and the dimensions of the project. Gauge shown is 20 sts and 44 rows in unblocked garter stitch, using light DK/sportweight yarn. A dense gauge gives the squares a nicer shape—in theory.

Yardage estimate: about 600+ yards of DK yarn. Please note that this is a very broad estimate! Scraps are fine; full skeins are fine if you’ve got them on hand. I’ll be knitting mostly DK, but worsted weight is also fine; it might result in a slightly bigger scarf.

(Estimated) Measurements: a pretty broad estimate, again. Ideally, the squares as shown, knit in light DK/sport, will end up being about 6.5” X 6.5”/16.5cm X 16.5cm. This results in a scarf that’s 91”/2.31m (oh no) long before working the border. Borders should/will be about 1-2”/2.5-5cm wide, so the totals should be around 93”/2.3m long by 8.5”/21.6cm wide. This is a pretty massive scarf, so feel free to cut a couple of squares, though obviously it won’t give you 14 days at a square a day if you do not knit 14.

Materials:

  • For the sample shown: 
  • 600+ yds light DK/sportweight yarn 
  • 1 40-60” circular needle in US4-5/3.5.5-3.75mm, or size needed for  gauge. (You can also work on a shorter needle—16” circular, straights, or even long DPNs, if you’re careful—and this may be a lot more comfortable in fact, but a long circular will be required for the last part of the pattern.)
  • tapestry needle, for weaving in ends

Please note: if this scarf is approached as an any-yarn project, then yardage and needle sizes required will vary; choose needles the work with your choice of yarn.

Terms:
k—knit
LH/RH—left hand, right hand
p—purl
RS/WS—right side, wrongside
s2kpo—slip two, knit 1, pass slipped sts over, a centered 2-st decrease
sl1–slip 1
st/s—stitch, stitches

So that’s Day 0: gauge, measurement estimates, yardage estimates, and materials. The next update should be on Wednesday or Thursday, with the first instructions. I will apparently be writing these with a 70-pound poodle trying to be on my lap because he’s upset by changed schedules. Not much of him fits.

Liner Notes 1 & 2.

Liner Notes 1 is a hat—reversible, with a double knit fabric that isn’t double knit (technically). Knit it in a plain MC and a single CC (my contrast skein was a self-striping sock yarn), or use soft sock-weight scraps for something more unique.

The sample shown is knit watchcap-style—it’s just the right length to cover an average adult wearer’s ears—but there’s no reason why you couldn’t knit this longer. The light yarn keeps it from being bulky, and I frankly like the combined minimalism and potential stripédness.

Liner Notes 2 isn’t live yet, mainly because I need to check the gauge, but it should be soon, because virtually all I have left to do to check the gauge, and that shouldn’t be a source of procrastination, right? Right?