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Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Jul Christmas Balls - Free Tutorials

Do you knit Christmas decorations? Fancy a quick little project to decorate your house or tree? These little balls are worked in the round using either double pointed needles or a long circular needles (magic loop technique).  I've got a set of four tutorials so you can knit along with me. 

The Jul Christmas Balls pattern includes four balls - one stranded colour work, one stranded colour work with beads and two beaded designs. Jul is Christmas in Norwegian.

Chart A

 Chart A is a Christmas tree which is a simple and easy design to knit.

Chart B

Chart B is a beaded stranded colour work design but you can leave the beads out if you prefer. See the red and grey ball below for this design without beads. If you don't use beads, then just knit those stitches in the colour indicated on the chart.

Chart B with and without beads

Chart C

Chart C is a beaded design but as you can see below, if you don't like beads, knit the beaded (B on the chart) stitches in another colour for a stranded colour work design.

Chart C with the red ball knitted in stranded colour work instead of beads.

Chart D

Chart D is a beaded design but as you can see below, you can also knit it in stranded colour work instead of beads. You can also combine the beads and stranded colour work.

Chart D with the right ball knitted in stranded colour work instead of beads.

I will post a tutorial for each section of the ball over the next three days. Today is a little introduction and a chance for you to get your tools and materials together.

Part 1

Watch Part 1 - Getting Started & Shaping the Beginning here. 

Watch the video on how to knit the  middle section with beads. 

Watch the video on how to knit the middle section in stranded colour work.

Part 3

Here's the final video on how to shape the top and how to finish the ball.

I will add videos to this post once they go live each day. You can download the Jul Christmas Balls pattern here.

These balls are knitted in the round and you can use either double pointed needles (I recommend a set of 5) or circular needles using the magic loop technique. I'm using magic loop in the video and I give you a quick introduction in the first video but I have a more in depth Magic Loop tutorial you may find helpful. 

The balls are charted and if you're new to charts you may find my De-mystifying Charts tutorial helpful. This tutorial is based on lace charts but the principles are the same. Here's a quick re-cap:

  • Charts are read from bottom to the top, so round 1 in at the bottom of the chart.
  • When you knit in the round, all rounds are read from right to left (so all round numbers are on the right hand side of the chart).
  • Each square is a stitch.
  • Check the chart key for the meaning of each symbol. On these charts, you only have to worry about which colour to knit each stitch in and where to add the beads (B on the chart). 
  • The balls are knitted in stocking stitch (knit every stitch).

Here's what you need:
You can use any dk yarn but below are the details of what I used. I do recommend using a smooth wool yarn.
Lang Merino 120 (dk; 100% Superwash Merino Wool; 120m/131yds per 50g) x 10g of each colour per ball. Shown in shades: Grey 0324, Cherry 0162, Aubergine 0180
3.75mm (UK 9/US 5) set of 5 double pointed needles or  circular needle, 80cm (32in) length
Seed Beads size 6 - I used Debbie Abrahams beads
Chart B - 32 beads 
Chart C - 96 beads
Chart D - 144 beads
0.75mm (US 14) crochet hook (for adding beads)
Approx 15g toy stuffing per ball
15cm/6in narrow ribbon per ball

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