2.3.15

Chunky Shrug Bolero

This is an amazing pattern for many different reasons: It's without a doubt one of the easiest garments that you will ever knit. It looks great on almost any body and can be worn open (as above) or closed together with a stylish shawl pin or button. Finishing is a breeze with just 2 small side seams. And best of all, you can adapt it for a better fit by adding or subtracting stitches in groups of 4. (Anyone can add or subtract 4 stitches.) And don't even think about blocking it at the end. It really can't be done as the shape molds to your body and with the stretch of the fabric, it really isn't of much use.

Gauge and size are not crucial for this garment as the ribbing allows the fabric to stretch to accommodate most figures.

Materials: 800m- 850m* of any Chunky weight yarn.
                  6mm circular needles at least 24"/ 60cm long.
*Note that the exact quantity of the yarn  is not crucial as the collar can be made a bit shorter without effecting the look or fit of the shrug.
                 
Directions: 
Leaving a tail of about 60cm, cast on 94sts. DO NOT JOIN the stitches, the piece is worked back and forth on the circular needle.
Row 1: K2, *P2, K2. Repeat from * to the end of the row.
Row 2: P2, *K2, P2. Repeat from * to the end of the row.
Repeat these 2 rows until the piece measures 24" (or desired length of the back), with Row 1 being the last row that you work.

Increase Row: Increase in each stitch by knitting into the front and the back of each. (188 sts)
Next Row: *K1, P1. Repeat from * to end of the row.
Repeat the last row until you have only 10m of yarn left (or desired length for the depth of the collar).

Cast off as follows: 
K1. Yarn forward.  Place the stitch from the right hand needle back on the left needle.
*P2tog. Move the yarn to the back. Place the stitch from the right hand needle back on the left needle.
K2 tog. through the back loop. Yarn forward. Place the stitch from the right hand needle back on the left needle.
Repeat from * until all of the stitches have been cast off and cut the yarn, leaving a tail of about 60 cm.

Finishing:
Fold the piece in half so the cast off and cast on edges are lying parallel, one on top of the other. Using a mattress stitch (It's absolutely worth looking this technique up on You Tube as it leaves such a polished finish to your seam) and the yarn from end of the cast off row, sew the side seam together from the base where the cast on and cast off stitches meet, up to the Increase Row. Do not tie off the yarn at this point. You should have a hole of about 20cm in height.

Hopefully you will have a cast on tail at the base of the other seam. If not, cut a new piece of yarn about 60cm long and attach it to the cast on edge on the opposite side and sew up the 2nd side to match the first.
Try on the shrug by inserting your arms through the holes. The K1, P1 part of the fabric should be at the top, forming the collar. Decide if you wish a more fitted look by continuing to sew the sides together for another few centimeters. Or if you feel that the armhole spaces do not leave enough room for layering, undo a few stitches on each side. Tie off the sewing yarn on each side.