Skills for Knitting your Hexipuffs for The Beekeeper's Quilt by Tiny Owl Knits

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Posted: Monday, July 30, 2012
Last Updated: Monday, August 27, 2012

Terry from Jimmy Beans Wool teaches you the skills needed to be able to knit the Hexipuffs in the Beekeeper's Quilt by Tiny Owl Knits. **Please note, this video teaches the skills used in the pattern but is not a substitute for the pattern** The pattern may be purchased here.

Skills for Knitting your Hexipuffs

Handy techniques for making the honeycomb shaped "puffs" for the Tiny Owl Knits Beekeeper's Quilt. Terry demonstrates the cast on called for in the pattern plus how to cast on for magic loop, 2 circulars, and a figure eight cast on. She also shows how to work a kf&b (knit front & back) and a M1 (Make 1).

DPN Method:

To cast on as described in the pattern:

  • With one of your double point needles and the normal Long tail cast on method, cast on the number of stitches required in the pattern. Terry is casting on 10 stitches for demonstration purposes. **Note: the number of stitches called for in the pattern is different.**
  • Now place the needle you just cast stitches onto in your left hand and pick up 2 more double pointed needles, holding them together parallel in your right hand.
  • Slip the first stitch purlwise from the needle holding the cast on stitches onto one of the needles in your right hand, slip the second stitch purlwise onto the other needle. Alternate slipping stitches onto each needle until all are divided equally between the two needles.
  • Slide the stitches to the other end of the needles so your working yarn is on the right side and coming from the back needle.
  • Now you are ready to begin knitting your hexipuff!

Magic Loop Method:

  • Cast on as for the DPN method but instead of turning the needle as you would normally do, slid the stitches to the other end of the double point needle.
  • Hold both tips of a 40" circular needle together and beginning from the opposite end of the double point from the working yarn slip the stitches purlwise alternating needle tips, just as for the DPN method.
  • To start knitting turn the needle so the tips point to your right and one in front of the other with the working yarn coming from the needle in the back. This is called "home" position. If you ever get confused while knitting magic loop technique, returning to this position makes it easier to figure out where you are. Jeanne has done an great video that I recommend you watch for more clarification. Magic Loop
  • While holding the stitches on the front needle tip, pull the back needle tip out to the right so the stitches for that tip are resting on the cable. Now begin knitting normally. When you finish the stitches on the front needle, slid the stitches that have been resting on the cable up onto the now empty needle tip and turn the work. You'll see that you are back to "home" position. Now pull the back needle out to the right and begin knitting the second side of your hexipuff!

Figure 8 cast on method:

This cast on can be used with any of the needle choices, DPN, Magic Loop or 2 Circulars.

  • Hold the tips of your needles together, one on top of the other in one hand with a little space between them.
  • Hold your yarn with the tail hanging down and slid it between your needles. Drape the working end over the top of the back needle. Grasp the tail and hold in the same hand with your needles.
  • Then start winding your working yarn end in figure eight fashion around your two needles by going *over the top of the top needle then in between the needles and around the bottom of the bottom needle then back to in between the needles and repeat from* until you have the number of stitches you need on each needle ending with an around the bottom of the bottom needle then back to in between.
  • Hold onto all the stitches securely until you knit your first round because this cast on will not stay on the needles by itself.
  • Turn so that your work is in the home position as described above and begin knitting your round.

Two Circular needles:

It's possible to use 2 circular needles for knitting your hexipuffs as well.

  • Just as for knitting socks on 2 circulars, Terry likes to use a 16" and a 24" long circulars because it makes it easier to find the needle end that you need to use much easier.
  • When knitting on 2 circulars you will be knitting half your stitches on each needle. The two halves never move from one needle to the other, they always stay on the same needle. So you are basically knitting as if they were two seperate rounds.
  • You can do the cast on called for in the pattern or any cast on you would use for magic loop. Terry demonstrates the figure eight cast on again and mentions Judy's Magic Cast On on that Jeanne has already done an excellent video describing.
  • The main differnece when knitting with 2 circulars as compared to magic loop is that from the "home position" instead of pulling the back needle out and knitting with it, *you pull it out and just let the stitches rest on the cable of that needle and then pickup the other end of the front needle and beginning knitting with this end. When you reach the end of the stitches on the front needle, pull the back needle further to the right to bring your stitches up onto the tip that is pointing left, turn your work, you are now back to "home position" repeat from *.

Loose Stitches

To avoid loose "ladders" or stitches, after you work the first stitch at the beginning of a needle pull the yarn to snug your new needle right up to the needle you just finished working on. The two needles will form a cross when you've snugged it up enough.


Knit front & back

  • The pattern calls for an increase called a knit front and back.
  • A knit front and back is also known by the following abbreviations and other names: kfb or kf&b, bar increase or sometimes just increase (inc)
  • You make a knit front and back by knitting the next stitch on the needle normally but don't drop the stitch off the left needle. Instead insert your needle into the back loop of the stitch and knit it again.
  • Then slip it off the left needle. You know have 2 stitches made from one stitch.
  • The second stitch you just made will look a little like a purl stitch which is why some people call this a bar increase, it makes a little bar.

Make 1 Increase

A Make 1 increases makes a more invisible increase and they can be done either left or right.

Make 1 left (M1L) is a little easier to do. To M1L, with the tip of your left needle pick up the ladder between the stitches on the needles from front to back. Then knit the loop you just picked up in the back to add a twist to the left. And that's all you do.

To Make 1 right (M1R) with the tip of your left needle pick up the ladder between the stitches on the needles from back to front. Then knit the loop you just picked up through the front to add a twist to the right.

I hope this covers most of what you need to make your hexipuffs! Watch for a video that shows how to do the 3-needle crochet bind off coming soon!

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