This week’s free pattern is Bisbee, a V-shaped shawl with an unusual construction. The shawl, designed by Brenda York and knit in Berroco Maya®, begins with a center diamond panel that features eyelet shapes and a flower created by cables, eyelets, and bobbles. Then the left and right wings are created by picking up stitches along the top two edges of the diamond, and knit to narrowing points. The knitting of the shawl is fairly easy, but if you need a refresher on how to knit bobbles, read on for video tutorials on knitting bobbles.
Before we get into how to make a bobble, let’s talk a little bit about what a bobble is. A bobble is simply extra stitches worked in a small amount of space to create a raised textured feature on a knitted space. Bobbles are related to knit popcorn stitches and nupps, which make an appearance in many Estonian knitting patterns.
For Bisbee, the bobbles are created by knitting into the front, back, and front again of the same stitch. All of a sudden, one stitch becomes three. But before you move on from the bobble, you slip the first and second stitches that you created over the third, thereby taking three down to one. This quick increase and decrease is what creates the elevated texture of the bobble stitch.
There’s many ways to work a bobble aside from the method used in the Bisbee shawl. Our Rosebud Cardigan uses a four-stitch bobble that has a purl row in the middle, making the bobbles even bigger. Cirilia made a video to show how to work this bobble.
Amanda also made a video on how to knit a bobble, to demonstrate the technique used to knit the Wisteria poncho. This technique uses a mix of knit and purl stitches to create the new stitches.
These are just a few ways to work a knitted bobble—what’s your preferred method of bobble making? Let us know in the comments.