Susan B. Anderson
The Little Hearts pattern below is shown in the photos using either a worsted weight yarn or a sport weight yarn, instructions for the materials are included for both versions. The pattern is worked exactly the same for both, only the yarn and needle size change depending on the weight of the yarn.
There is a video tutorial below to help with the hearts!
Woolens Little Hearts Notes: It's not necessary to change it, but one modification I have used for the sport weight Woolens hearts is that I used a KFB (knit in the front and the back of the same stitch) for the increase in the first and last stitch on each of the two needles instead of the M1 used on the worsted weight hearts. Both increases work fine. Also, for the final finishing on the Woolens Hearts, I used the Kitchener stitch to close the tops instead of pulling the yarn through the live stitches. Either way works fine.
Worsted Weight Hearts
Size: About 2 ¼-inches wide and 2-inches in height after felting
Yarn: 10 grams of worsted weight wool.
Needles: US size 7 or 4.5mm, set of 3 double-pointed needles or long circular for Magic Loop.
Gauge: 5 stitches per inch before felting
Sport Weight Hearts in Woolens Yarn
Size: About 1 3/4-inches in height and width
Yarn: Samples are knit in Woolens yarn. Each heart uses 2 grams of Woolens.
Needles: US size 4 or 3.5mm, set of 3 double-pointed needles
Gauge: 6.5 stitches per inch in stockinette stitch
* The Woolens Little Hearts were steamed when finished, not felted.
Scrap yarn to hold stitches
String or baker’s twine to make a garland (optional)
K2tog Knit two stitches together.
SSK Slip two stitches separately as if to knit. Knit the two slipped stitches together through the back loops.
Dpn(s) Double-pointed needle(s)
M1 Make one stitch by inserting the point of the left needle from front to back, under the strand running in between the stitches. Lift the strand onto the left and knit it through the back loop.
Kfb Knit in the front and the back of the same stitch to increase 1 stitch.
Starting at the bottom of the heart, use 2 double-pointed needles to work in the round (use a third dpn to knit onto) or one long circular needle for magic loop.
Cast on 6 stitches using the long-tail cast-on method, placing 3 stitches on each of two needles. Join to work in the round. Place a stitch marker to mark the beginning of the round.
Rnd 1: Knit.
Rnd 2: (K1, m1, knit to last stitch, m1, k1) repeat on each needle. 5 sts per needle, 10 sts total.
Repeat Rounds 1 and 2 until you have 15 stitches on each of the two needles. End after a Round 2. 30 sts total.
Divide for the Top of the Heart
Next Rnd: K7, place the next 16 stitches on a piece of scrap yarn, k7. 7 sts per needle, 14 sts total. 16 sts being held on scrap yarn.
Rnd 1: (K1, ssk, k1, k2tog, k1) repeat on each needle. 5 sts per needle, 10 sts total.
Rnd 2: Knit.
Rnd 3: (Ssk, k1, k2tog) repeat on each needle. 3 sts per needle, 6 sts total.
Cut the yarn and place the end on a yarn needle. Pull the end through the remaining stitches and pull up tight to close the hole. Pull the end to the inside and trim.
Place the end from the cast on stitches on a yarn needle. Take some stitches to close the hole at the bottom of the heart. Pull the end to the inside and trim.
Stuff the heart with fiberfill until firm but do not overstuff.
Place the stitches being held back on the needles. 8 sts per needle. 16 sts total.
Reattach the yarn to start working at the center of the heart.
Hold the needles parallel. Bring the yarn under the back needle and to the back. Knit the first stitch on the front needle together with the first stitch on the back needle. You will now have one stitch on the right needle. Place this stitch back on the front left needle. Begin working in the round.
Rnd 1: K2tog, knit to the end of the round.
Rnd 2: (K1, ssk, k1, k2tog, k1) repeat on each needle. 5 sts per needle, 10 sts total.
Rnd 3: Knit.
Rnd 4: (Ssk, k1, k2tog) repeat on each needle. 3 sts per needle, 6 sts total.
Cut the yarn leaving a 12-inch end and place the end on a yarn needle. Pull the end through the remaining stitches and pull up tight to close the hole. Leave the end out.
Finish stuffing the heart with fiberfill until firm but do not overstuff. There will be some gaps in the center where you divided the stitches. Pull the end through and use this end to stitch up and close the gaps. It doesn’t need to be perfect because the heart will be felted. Pull the end to the inside and trim.
Fill a basin with hot water (not too hot, of course, but as hot as you can stand) and add some wool soap. I used the brand Soak for the soap. Submerge the heart in the water and get it soaked. Rub the heart vigorously in the palms your hands and turn it in all directions. Don’t worry if it gets misshapen, just stop every once in awhile and reshape it to see what it looks like. Keep dipping the heart in the soapy water and keep rubbing it in your hands until it gets felted. My hearts still have the stitches slightly visible after felting. When the heart gets felted to your preference squeeze out the excess water and reshape it into the final heart-shape. Lay the heart flat to dry.
Put a cut length (the length will vary with the number of hearts) of string or baker’s twine on a yarn needle and pull the end through the series of hearts either vertically or horizontally. Make a loop or loops for hanging at the ends of the string.
I hope you enjoy the Little Hearts pattern! Spread the love and we are wishing you all a very Happy Valentine's Day.
Susan B. Anderson
©Barrett Wool Co. 2017