Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Paloma Blanca [a free knitting pattern]

A friend gave me a little bag at church the other week - it contained 3 balls of white baby wool [one ball started] and a rather elderly pattern for a baby's matinee jacket. The problem - the wool was 3ply, and this was her only pattern for that weight, and she could not manage to make it work. She said she'd had three goes, and pulled it out, and was fed up with the wool and the pattern, so thought I could use it.
An irresistible challenge. I set to, and it took me three attempts to make sense of the pattern. And when I had, I really didn't like it. It was holey, rather than lacy - and I felt that for a small baby, the holes were big enough to trap little fingers. 
But I didn't have a 3ply pattern anywhere in my stash either [yes, I know, I was surprised too!]  I asked in a local woolshop. "We don't really sell 3ply any more, but I have some shawl patterns" But these needed more than 3 balls of yarn."Why don't you knit it up with 2 strands to a double knit pattern?"
I spent ages trawling the internet, and finally found one on an Australian site - a simple V neck cardi.  But [a] the Oz knitting terminology was not familiar to me, and [b] it was an all over "Greek Key" type of pattern over 8 stitches and 15 rows. Undoubtedly attractive, but too complicated for my Saturday night knitting in front of the TV. 
So I modified the pattern and come up with this...
I have called it Paloma Blanca because it is white, and I used Dove Stitch
Dove Stitch is possibly not its proper name - but I call it that for my best friend. Her farming family have used this pattern for classic V and round neck pullovers for a number of years  [Chris gave me a copy some while ago, and I still haven't got round to knitting myself one] It is easy, and slightly more interesting than regular stocking stitch, but less complicated than moss stitch or fisherman's rib. Basic pattern is for just 4 rows.
Row 1 knit, Row 2 purl, Row 3 K1, *K1P1* repeat to last st, K1, Row 4 purl.

PALOMA BLANCA -Baby's Cardigan in Dove Stitch
Fits 3-6 months, chest 50cm
Required; 75gm 3ply wool, pair each 2.75 & 3mm needles, 5 buttons

BACK - Cast on 80 sts with 2.75mm needles. Work 15 rows in K1P1 rib. Change to 3 mm needles. Work 48 rows in Dove Stitch [as above] Keeping pattern correct, cast off 2 sts at beginning of next 6 rows, and k2tog at each end of next row. [66 sts] Work 41 rows. Cast off.
LEFT FRONT- Cast on 40 sts, with 2.75mm needles. Work 15 rows in K1P1 rib. Change to 3 mm needles. Work 48 rows in Dove Stitch [as above] Keeping pattern correct, cast off 2 sts at beginning of next 3 right side rows, at the same time k2tog at end of each right side row. [31sts] P2tog at end of next row. Now k2tog at end of each right side row 8 more times [22 sts] Keeping pattern correct, work until 96 rows of Dove Stitch pattern completed [to match back]
RIGHT FRONT- Work as left front, reversing shapings.
MAKING UP - Sew shoulders, sew in sleeves and side seams.
BUTTON BAND -  With 2.75mm needles, cast on 8 sts. Work 4 rows in K1P1 rib. ** row 5 K1P1, cast off 4, K1P1.   row 6, K1,P1, cast on 4, K1,P1 rows 7-16 - work in K1P1 rib** Repeat **to**4 more times [5 buttonholes]. Continue in K1P1 rib till band is long enough to go all round front edge. Cast off. Sew in place, sew on 5 buttons. 

Dove Stitch is great because the ridges make it easy to count the rows!


  1. I've knitted that stitch many times, but didn't have a name for it.
    Dove stitch it is then!

  2. That is a lovely little sweater! A very good name for the stitch! Thank you for the pattern, Angela.


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