The old stand-bys

I’m a slow knitter, for two reasons: 1) I tend to have a lot of things going on that fill what could be otherwise used as knitting time, and 2) I do a lot of work with my hands and a repetitive strain injury could set me back in a lot of inconvenient ways. So, I don’t have quite the output of finished knitted objects that, say, some of my friends have.

As a result, I rarely knit a pattern more than once (despite my habit of remarking on what I would change to a pattern, were I to knit it again). If it’s going to take me a season to knit a scarf, I’d like to at least get a feeling of novelty for the next one.

All of that being said, there are a few patterns I’ve gone back to several times, and I don’t mean reknitting the same sleeve four times until it fits. I do a lot of my knitting these days either on public transit, or in dimly lit hospital auditoria–both places where it can be difficult to look at instructions, so memorized patterns have a real advantage. There are also patterns that produce great gifts, with reliably positive reactions from the giftees. And well, some patterns are also just fast.

Here are my three stand-by knitting projects–fast, easily memorized, and appealing. In fact, I’ve knit these so many times I don’t even have recent photos–I tend to do FO shots of the first one and skip the incessant urge to visually document the rest. Some of these go back several years (all the way to my old Colorado apartment):

Cartridge-belt rib scarf:






Cartridge-belt rib is not a true rib, in that it doesn’t have horizontal elasticity, but its vertical lines give it a strong resemblance to other forms of ribbing. I like this stitch pattern because it’s soft, reversible, dense, and pretty gender-neutral. It’s made a few nice and warm scarves over the years.

Christine’s Stay-On Baby Booties:






Being of the age where new babies are rapidly popping, quark-like, into existence into my social/family circles, I always find it useful to have a stash of them on hand as gifts. This pattern is quite simple, looks cute, and apparently is damn near impossible for babies to pry off their own feet. Great way to use up leftover fine yarn, too.

Mother Bear Project Bears







I’m not sure how many bears I’ve knit for the Mother Bear Project over the years. Let’s just say, a lot. I’ve adapted the (very easy, very memorizable) pattern a few times, so that I can now knit them in the round and avoid seaming, and do raglan-style arms for a change once in a while. When I amass a few, I put them all in a box and ship them off to MBP.

What are your favourite patterns to knit more than once? Or do you always knit something new?

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One Response to The old stand-bys

  1. Shireen says:

    Those booties are adorable! The one knit I keep coming back to are the sporty striped peds at the Purl Bee – super easy sock pattern for ankle peds!

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