Thursday, August 10, 2017

Orphan Kitten Sweater-Take 3

***Update-We have changed up the measurements in the images at the bottom to account for what is more consistent with the different yarns and tensions we are all using.  Because we all crochet with these different yarns and tensions, we have decided to aim more for the right dimensions, rather than the number of rows and stitches.  This is easier said than done for those of you who are not comfortable with crochet, we know that.  If you are a beginner, by all means, get used to the pattern before you try to alter it.***

I’m pretty dang proud of how many kitten lives have been touched by this “little” project.  Thank you to everyone who has helped in one way or another, especially our fearless leader, Stephanie, and the sweater making machine, Barbara.  We are hoping this is the last iteration of the pattern.  Fingers crossed!  That being said, however, if you have suggestions, please let me know.

Hopefully this blog isn’t too busy, but I’m trying out housing all of the sizes on one page.  One day, I’ll figure out how to get it to jump to the size below without you having to scroll.  I'm also hoping to make a how-to video.  Stay tuned.

In case there was anything in the original blog you want to reference, here is the link.

You can find us on facebook, and the official site can be found here.  There you can find information on how to volunteer to make these sweaters, how to donate money if you so wish, and about the project itself.  Teamwork!





Materials:  G/4.5mm crochet hook, scissors, yarn needle if desired, SEW-ON Velcro (Make sure BOTH sides are sew-on.  I learned the hard way.), thread, sewing machine if desired, parchment paper if desired.

Yarn:  The original pattern called for 100% cotton yarn, but we have been experimenting with acrylic recently.  Basically whatever worsted weight yarn you prefer.  My favorite is Caron Simply Soft.  With coupons, I can usually get a skein for under $3.  I would suggest that you avoid any of the super saver-type yarns, as they aren’t very soft.  Think about what you would want a human baby wrapped up in.  I found that the Lion Brand 24/7 cotton and Caron Cotton Cakes work well for the size 2 sweaters.  That size isn’t used so much to keep babies warm, but more for protecting their stitches post-surgery.  It allows the wound to breathe, but keeps the poor little babies from needing to wear the “cone of shame.”

Guide to sizes:
The Millie:  approximately 3-10 oz.
The Mazie:  approximately 10-18 oz.
The Daniel:  approximately 18-26 oz.
The Sunny:  approximately 26-32 oz.


Stitch Guide:  CH-chain, HDC-half double crochet, SC-single crochet, SL ST-slip stitch


CH 23


Row 1:

SC into the 2rd stitch from the end

SC 1 more
SL ST into the next 2 stitches, SC into the next 2 stitches.  Continue across for a total of 22 stitches.
(This row starts and ends with 2 SCs.)


Row 2:

CH 1 and turn
SC 2
CH 2
Skip 2 stitches and repeat across
(This row also starts and ends with 2 SCs.)

Row 3: 
CH 2 and turn
HDC 2
HDC into the back loops of the 2 chains
Repeat across

Row 4:

CH1 and turn

SC 22


Row 5:
CH 2 and turn

HDC into first 4 stitches

CH 4

Skip 4 stitches and HDC 4 into the next 4 stitches

CH 4

Skip 4 stitches and HDC 6 into the remaining 6 stitches


Row 6:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6

HDC into the back loops of the 4 chains

HDC 4

HDC into the back loops of the 4 chains

HDC 4


Row 7-9:

CH2 and turn

HDC 22


Row 10:

CH 1 and turn

SL ST 10

CH 2

HDC 6


Row 11:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6


Row 12:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 1

CH 3

Skip 3 and stitch into the 4th stitch

HDC into the final stitch


Row 13:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 2

HDC into the back loop of the 3 chains

HDC 2


Row 14:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6


Row 15:
CH 2 and turn
HDC 6 together*


CH 1, cut the yarn, pull through, and weave in ends.


*To crochet stitches together, you don’t pull through the last loop.  You’ll chain 2, turn, yarn over, pull through, and then pull through 2.  You’ll have 2 stitches on your hook.  You’ll do that all of the way across, and you’ll end up with 7 stitches on your hook.  Then you’ll yarn over, and pull through all 7 stitches.


CH 28


Row 1:

HDC into the 3rd stitch from the end

HDC 1 more
SL ST 2, HDC 2 across for a total of 26 stitches
(This row starts and ends with 2 HDCs.)


Row 2:

CH 2 and turn
HDC 2
CH 2
Skip 2 stitches and repeat across
(This row also starts and ends with 2 HDCs.)

Row 3: 
CH 2 and turn
HDC 2
HDC into the back loops of the 2 chains
Repeat across

Row 4-5:

CH2 and turn

HDC 26


Row 6:
CH 2 and turn

HDC 5

CH 5

Skip 5 stitches and HDC 5 into the next stitches

CH 5

Skip 5 stitches and HDC 6 into the remaining 6 stitches


Row 7:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6

HDC into the back loops of the 5 chains

HDC 5

HDC into the back loops of the 5 chains

HDC 5


Row 8-12:

CH2 and turn

HDC 26


Row 13:

CH 1 and turn

SL ST 11

CH 2

HDC 6


Row 14:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6


Row 15:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 1

CH 3

Skip 3 and stitch into the 4th stitch

HDC into the final 2 stitches


Row 16:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 2

HDC into the back loop of the 3 chains

HDC 1


Row 17-19:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 6

Row 20:
CH 2 and turn
HDC 6 together*


CH 1, cut the yarn, pull through, and weave in ends.


*To crochet stitches together, you don’t pull through the last loop.  You’ll chain 2, turn, yarn over, pull through, and then pull through 2.  You’ll have 2 stitches on your hook.  You’ll do that all of the way across, and you’ll end up with 7 stitches on your hook.  Then you’ll yarn over, and pull through all 7 stitches.

Pattern:


CH 32


Row 1:

HDC into the 3rd stitch from the end

HDC 1 more
SL ST 2, HDC 2 across for a total of 30 stitches

(This row starts and ends with 2 HDCs.)


Row 2:
CH 2 and turn
HDC 2
CH 2
Skip 2 stitches and repeat across
(This row also starts and ends with 2 HDCs.)

Row 3:
CH 2 and turn
HDC 2
HDC into the back loops of the 2 chains
Repeat across

Row 4-6:
CH2 and turn

HDC 30

Row 7:
CH 2 and turn

HDC 7

CH 6

Skip 6 stitches and HDC 6 into the next stitches

CH 6

Skip 6 stitches and HDC 5 into the remaining 5 stitches


Row 8:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 5

HDC into the back loops of the 6 chains

HDC 6

HDC into the back loops of the 6 chains

HDC 7


Row 9-17:

CH2 and turn

HDC 30

Row 18:

CH 1 and turn

SL ST 11

CH 2

HDC 8


Row 19 & 20:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 8


Row 21:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 2

CH 3

Skip 3 and stitch into the 4th stitch

HDC into the final 3 stitches


Row 22:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 3

HDC into the back loop of the 3 chains

HDC 2


Row 23-25:

CH 2 and turn

HDC 8


Row 26:
CH 2 and turn
HDC 8 together*


CH 1, cut the yarn, pull through, and weave in ends.

To make The Sunny, use the same pattern as The Daniel, but use a 6mm hook.  Most people don't want the flap in this size, as it is usually for post-surgery babies, and it isn't necessary.  If this is your preference, just end after row 17.

Add Velcro.  Tip:  I've been using thread that matches the yarn.  That way you don't really see it from the outside.  It's been working well.

I actually stopped using the parchment paper and doing the X's on the ends.  I found that doing a backstitch at the beginning and end made it sturdy enough.  It also goes WAY faster.  If you have an issue with the yarn catching in your machine, use parchment paper underneath your piece.

Helpful images:

Row 1:
 Row 2:
To add the arm holes, you'll do your chain stitches, yarn over, and stitch into whatever stitch it calls for in the pattern.

When you chain together, you'll pull through the two loops that are circled here:
The stitches on your hook before you yarn over and pull through all of the loops.
Measurements:  Please keep in mind that these are estimates.  Your sweaters may vary, due to tension or yearn differences.
The Millie:


The Mazie:

The Daniel:

The Sunny:
Velcro:

In this picture, the scratchy velcro is the larger piece on the left, and the small piece on the right is the soft side.
In this picture, the larger section is the soft side, and the small piece on the flap is the scratchy side.  The two smaller models have one row of the soft velcro, and the two larger models have two rows.


18 comments:

  1. Have you found that one way of Velcro works better than the other?

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    Replies
    1. I wish I knew the answer to this as well

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    2. I'm sorry, guys! I missed any notifications about this question. Can you please be more specific?

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  2. This is wonderful! You don't know how many times I could have used these!! Can't believe I didn't think of it :( I have Feral Cats out in our woods and they always bring their babies up and sometimes just leave them. I've got to get busy now ~ I will be prepared the next time thanks to you :)

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  4. I really don't like velcro but i have tons of buttons. Since i work crochet, I'm wondering if using buttons that the loops fit over would be better than scratchy velcro of any sort. I will try , and if so, I'll post back here (but give me a bit of time until Summer session at Uni begins...)

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    Replies
    1. I'm so sorry. I swear I already responded to this question. The problem with buttons is trying to get the kittens to hold still long enough to button them up. We thought about this one too, since I have approximately 12,000,000 buttons. Love the idea, though!

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  5. Would be easy with fleece since you wouldnt hav to hem holes

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    Replies
    1. There are a lot of people doing fleece. I would think they would go so fast! Have you tried it?

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  6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  7. i just made my first one of these, and i'm trying to make sense of your velcro placement...i can't figure out a) why the large piece of scratchy side and not comparable size of soft side (doesn't it just get caught up in the yarn??); and b) why it's not placed so the sides can attach at an overlap. do you have any photos of these on a kitten to help me make sense of it??

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    Replies
    1. A) If you're talking about length, it's because it always seems to get stretched when I sew it on. It starts the same. If you're talking about width, it's so it can be adjusted for the size of the kitten. If the scratchy side was wider, it would definitely catch, but with the soft side being wider, I haven't had an issue with that. B) Maybe the images on this page will help. It shows the folded sweaters from both the top and the bottom. https://www.orphankittensweaters.org/about-the-sweaters

      Please let me know if you need more clarification. I can ask someone for more pictures if we need them.

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  8. Yes, please! Y’all need more pictures of Velcro attachment, placement, location, etc.

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  9. Well, I always wanted to learn to crochet.... Now I'm more motivated. I have 7 fosters right now, so will have lots to practice! Thank you for sharing your patterns!

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  10. my question is if you do the Velcro like image one how does the tail part attach?if Velcro is only on the left and right but nothing on the tail? if that's understandable

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    Replies
    1. @beth88969 There is a piece of Velcro on the tail tab. The tail flap folds up first and attaches to the small side piece of Velcro.

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