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How to Knit a Kippah, Also Called a Skullcap, Worn by Observant Jewish Men
The Kippah is often knitted by community members and those who admire its beautiful design. A knitted Kippot is referred to as a Kippot serugot and is most commonly worn by Religious Zionists and Modern Orthodox. A kippah isn’t just one color or design – each is a skull cap, but they can be made in a variety of colors, including sports team colors, colors that represent tradition, or colors that are significant to the individual.
-Yarn cotton, wool, linen. Use a thick and bulky or worsted yarn so you can see your stitches. Sports yarn gives you five stitches per inch. You may want a different color of yarn for the pattern
-A round US 10 needle that is 16 inches long
-Artificial ribbon or yarn of a contrasting color for the pattern
-Crochet hook/tapestry needle
16 stitches, 20 rows This makes a kippah that is 4 inches deep and 17 inches around.
* Consider the way you knit the stitches. If you knit loosely, use a small needle and if you knit tightly, use a larger needle. The fabric you want to knit on the kip must be firm but not stiff.
Introduction and basics:
When knitting a kippah, you will need to cast on, knit in the round, decrease and weave in the ends to complete the kippah knitting. You also need to know the basics of knitting, such as creating a knit stitch and purl.
You start with a slip knot on the needle. Hold the needle in your right hand and hold the yarn tail away with your fingers. Grasp the working yarn in your left hand and pull the working yarn around your thumb starting from the back towards the front. Insert the tip of the needle under the loop of yarn around the thumb. Pull your thumb out of the loop and gently pull on the stitch on the needle to secure it. Continue doing this until you have a loose and thin edging of the knit. Turn your work over and start knitting.
Knitting in the round:
To knit a Kippah, you need to use the technique of knitting in the round. This way you don’t have to use two needles when knitting and sew seams when making a kippah. You can use one circular needle, two circular needles, the magic loop method or five double pointed needles. When using a circular needle, you will need one that is smaller than the circumference of the kippah. For example, use a 16-inch circular needle for a kippah with an 18-inch circumference. This allows the stitches to fit snugly around the needle and meet at the tips without stretching.
Before you knit the first stitch, make sure there are no twists in the cast-on stitches. The cast-on edge should run along the bottom of the needle all the way around without bending around the cable. Push the last cast-on stitches onto the tip of the needle so that the working yarn is close to the tip. Hold the tip of the needle with your left hand and the other with your right. Place a marker on the right tip of the needle so you can track the start of the round and it will help you count later. Begin knitting by inserting the right needle tip into the first stitch on the left needle tip. Use the working yarn to knit the first stitch, pull tight so that it connects more tightly with the stitches on the right needle tip. Continue knitting until you come to the marker. When you reach the mark, it means you have completed one round of knitting.
You can reduce it in two ways. You can do this at the beginning of the row. Knit the first stitch, slip the next stitch. Knit the third stitch and take the middle stitch and pull it up and over the needle. This takes away one stitch that you can use to bind off. The second way to decrease is when you only get to three stitches at the end of the row, take two stitches and knit them together. Knit the last stitch and you have reduced the number of stitches in your kippah.
How to calculate for the gauge:
Measure your head in inches and knit the pattern with yarn and needles. Here you will find out how many stitches you knit per inch. Multiply the number of inches you get from your head measurement by the number of stitches you will knit per inch. Then you have the number of stitches you need to cast on.
Multiples of 6 stitches.
The first and second rows will use silk ribbon, purl 3 and slip 3, repeat until you reach the marker.
The third and fourth rows will have cotton yarn, knitting will get you to the mark. The fifth and sixth rows will have cotton yarn. You will need to make a lifting loop in row 5. Rows 7 and 8, use rayo ribbon again in front, slip 3, turn 3 until you reach the marker. Rows 9, 10, 11, 12 use cotton yarn. Make a lifting loop in the eleventh row to the last two stitches.
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