For a Muff

From Exercises in Knitting by Cornelia Mee. Original text at Project Gutenberg.

Original Pattern

Cast on 80 stitches with the lightest shade, and knit 3 plain rows: in the fourth row pass the wool round the pin, seam 2 stitches together, pass the wool round the pin, seam 2 together, and so on to the end of the row; join the next lightest shade, and knit 3 plain rows. In the fourth row, seam 2 stitches together, pass the wool round the pin, seam 2 together, and so on to the end of the row. Continue in this manner, knitting 3 plain rows, and an open row of each shade, till the darkest; then again to the lightest: this forms 1 stripe, 4 of which are required. The last stripe should finish with the lightest shade, to correspond with the beginning. The shading of each stripe must be reversed; thus, first begin with the lightest shade and knit to the darkest, then knit from the darkest to the lightest, and then again to the darkest, and so on. This should be done in double German wool, in five shades of sable or chinchilla colours, and satin put underneath the knitting of the same colour.

Updated Version

Materials

5 colors of dk weight yarn and a pair of 4mm needles needles

Abbreviations

CO = Cast on
yo = yarn over – bring the yarn over the top of the right hand needle, wind it around the needle and bring it back to the front.
p2tog = purl two stitches together
BO = Bind off
CA = yarn color A (the lightest color)
CB = yarn color B
CC = yarn color C
CD = yarn color D
CE = yarn color E (the darkest color)

Stripe Pattern

With CA, CO 80

Rows 1-3: knit to end
Row 4: *yo, p2tog; repeat from * to end

Change to CB
Rows 5-7: knit to end
Row 8: *p2tog, yo; repeat from * to end

Change to CC
Row 9-11: knit to end
Row 12: *yo, p2tog; repeat from * to end

Change to CD
Row 13-15: knit to end
Row 16: *p2tog, yo; repeat from * to end

Change to CE
Rows 17-19: knit to end
Row 20: *yo, p2tog; repeat from * to end

Change to CD
Rows 21-23: knit to end
Row 24: *p2tog, yo; repeat from * to end

Change to CC
Row 25-27: knit to end
Row 28: *yo, p2tog; repeat from * to end

Change to CB
Row 29-31: knit to end
Row 32: *p2tog, yo; repeat from * to end

Repeat Rows 1-32, three more times

Change to CA
Repeat Rows 1-3
BO all

The muff should be lined with two layers of satin, between which layers of horse hair and stuffing are used to hold the shape of the muff and provide extra warmth.

Other versions of this pattern published say to cast on 70 or 80 stitches, and to finish off the ends with tassels or ribbon, since the muff was designed to hung around the neck.

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