Friday, 28 February 2014

Boot Toppers

It's a very long drive across Australia's Nullabor and as we are always in a hurry to get to Victoria and then in even more of a hurry to get back, it becomes an exceptionally long time to be sitting in the car.  We don't stop off and sight see so it means a lot of knitting time.  And I mean A LOT.

I usually knit socks - something quick and easily portable that can be put away quickly at refuelling stops as I dash out to pay for fuel and seek chocolate, but I was already knitting a sock and wanted something else.

My daughter had mentioned that she would like a pair of boot toppers and I had every intention of making her some whilst we were on holiday.  But you know what it's like with knitting - there's always other projects on the go.  Now, however, the Nullabor stretched out for 1000's of kilometers before us for the drive home so I took up a ball of beautiful Bergere de France yarn in Sport, a set of 4.00mm needles and set to work coming up with a pattern.  I had wanted to knit these in the round but only bought my sock knitting DPN's so, in the end,  I knitted them flat and 'sewed' them up with a crochet needle.  They can easily be knit in the round though - the choice is yours.


half a ball of Bergere de France Sport in creme.
1 set of 4.00mm knitting needles.
1 4.00mm crochet needle (optional)


Cast on 54 stiches
K2, P2 to end
Continue ribbing for 9 rows

Row 1: *K4, YO, K3, P2* rpt to end
Row 2: *K2, P8* rpt to end
Row 3: *K2, K2tog, YO, K1, YO, SSK, K1, P2* rpt to end
Row 4 (and all even rows) Knit all knit stitches and purl all purl stitches (Purl YO's)
Row 5: *K1, K2tog, YO, Slip one, K2, PSSO, YO, SSK, P2* rpt to end
Row 6: as row 4

Repeat this pattern (Rows 1 - 6) a further 5 times.

Repeat K2, P2 ribbing for 9 rows and loosely cast off.

To join, I slipped stitched them together with a crochet hook which leaves a nice, neat edge. They can just as easily be sewn together though.

The finished topper is 6 inches long.  If you need to make them any wider, cast on a further 9 stitches for each extra pattern repeat.

I have arrived home and believe me, it is sweltering.  There will be a few more months yet before they can be worn - which is fine.  It gives me time to make some for myself.

Happy Knitting,

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

  2. Shouldn't row five say k2tog instead of knit 2 in front of the PSSO. It makes the pattern 11 stitches where everything else in the pattern is in sets of 10.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. I am also having a problem with row 5, and since the author has not replied, will try the k2tog as you suggested to see if that makes the pattern work right.

    3. I had problems with this pattern too, but I adjusted the YO to YFWD and the pattern worked perfectly. I had spent all day trying to work out what I was doing wrong, then I thought I will just try rows 1-6 using yfwd instead of yo and the problem was solved. I hope this helps everyone who is having trouble. Give it a try :)

  3. I'm confused. I am knitting in the round and 54 stitches makes an uneven rib if you start with k2 and end with k2. What am I doing wrong?

    1. Hi MJ,
      As I didn't knit these in the round, the K2 at each end of the toppers meant that when you sew them together, the two end stitches were sewn together. This means that the sewn seam looks like a K2. If you are knitting in the round, I would suggest trying a K3, P3 rib instead.

  4. What do you mean by "knit all knit stitches and purl all purl stitches?" Thanks.

    1. Hi Mellie,

      It just means on the reverse of your knitting, if the stitch presents itself as a knit stitch, then you knit it and if it presents itself as a purl stitch, then you purl it. There is no patterning on the reverse of the boot toppers, so it's just following the pattern that has been established on the front. Happy knitting, Louise

  5. what cast on and bind off did you use? i'm not happy with my cast off no matter what method i use :(

    1. Hi Lisa,
      I always use the cable cast on .. It was the cast on I was taught when I was 6 and I pretty much use it all the time. (I've included a you tube link) The cast of is the standard, K2, and slip the 1st knitted stitch over the 2nd and repeat. I tend to loosen it up a bit if using if for socks or boot toppers though. Happy knitting, Louise

  6. Hello,

    I love the look of those boot toppers however, once I completed the ribbing I ran into problems on the first row. I followed your instructions of *K4, YO, K3, P2* RPT to end. In my mind when the pattern request to RPT to end then you knit everything within the * so when I did I ended with K4 instead of P2.....don't know what I'm doing wrong???

  7. where do you find needles (in the round) that are small enough for these boot toppers? Tks. so much

  8. Has anyone figured out how to get down to 54 stitches in row 5 so when one repeats the pattern with row 1, row 1 will not have 6 extra stitches? If I follow row 5 as written, I end up with 72 stitches. If I knit 2 together where it says to knit 2, I end up with 60 stitches or 66 - depending on whether I decrease one or two stitches with the psso. Has anyone tried k1, k2tog, yo, slip 1, k2tog, psso, yo, ssk, p2tog, p1?

    1. Hello, I have gone back and knitted this pattern again to see if I can locate the problem, but I end up with 54 stitches at the end of row 5 - as in the original pattern. I have knitted and re-knitted and do not end up with any extra stitches at the end of row 5 and I am unable to ascertain how you have any extra stitches. If you have 72 stitches, it means that by the time you get to row 5, you have 18 extra stitches - which works out to be 3 for each pattern repeat. This would indicate to me that a decrease is not being done. The SSK that I used for this pattern is to slip a stitch purlwise, slip the next stitch purlwise and the put the LHS needle through the front of both of the slipped stitches and knit them together.

      A link for the lace pattern can be found here

      I hope this can help you. I know how frustrating it can be when a pattern doesn't come together. Please let me know if there is anything more I can help you with. Kind regards, Louise

    2. I'm knitting the ssk the way you are and end up with 60 stitches at the end of rows 1 and 3. If I knit the psso as a double decrease, I have 66 stitches at the end of row 5. If I knit the psso as a single decrease - it's 72. I've spent hours knitting those five rows over and over and can't figure out what I'm missing.

    3. Louise, thank you for responding. The link you gave leads to an acorn pattern - is that the right one?

    4. Hello, the link should have sent you to a 'Lace Arrows 1' pattern. If it is not opening correctly, just do a search and it should then show up. I saw the pattern and thought it would make a great pair of boot toppers so I just knitted 6 repeats of this pattern with a P2 in between each set and then sewed them together.

      For Row 1, you are increasing one stitch per set so you should have 60 stitches with each stitch set being 8 pattern and 2 purl.
      For Row 3, the stitch count remains the same - each stitch set is 10 stitches (8 pattern and 2 purl)
      For Row 5, You are decreasing one stitch per stitch set to bring you back to 54 stitches (7 pattern stitches and 2 purl).

      I hope this can help you .. The boot topper really do look lovely when finished and I would love for you have a pair . Kind regards, Louise

    5. Thank you Louise! I figured out what I was doing wrong by looking at the Lace Arrows1 pattern. I was treating slip one, K2 as separate from PSSO. I was slipping one stitch, knitting two and then slipping two more stitches before I dropped one over instead of slipping one stitch, knitting 2 and moving the slipped stitch over the two knitted and off the needle - then moving onto the yo and ssk. Once I figured out that psso was just telling me to work with the three previous stitches - row 5 worked and decreased to 54 stitches.

      You're right - you have created a beautiful pattern for lacy boot toppers. I'm knitting this pair as a gift but expect I will have to knit a pair for me too.

    6. I'm so relieved for you .. there's nothing more frustrating than a pattern that won't behave itself :-) Happy knitting .. Louise

  9. Hi, I don't quite understand why I should use 4.00 mm knitting needles with such fine wool. When I tried it made this huge loops and holes which did not look pretty. Am I missing something?

    1. Hello Maryke,
      Are you using UK4.00mm needles? If you are using US sizing then, yes, it will be too big as the US 4 equates to UK6.00mm. I have used a 4.00mm not only on the boot toppers but also a Jumper/sweater that I made and both items are spot on with guage. Hope this helps. Louise

  10. According to charts I found:
    US4=3.5mm metric & is between 9 & 10 UK/Canadian.
    UK6mm=US8 & 5.0mm metric.
    4.0mm metric= US6 & UK/Canadian 8.
    I am going to try US6 and hope this works, if not I'll try the next size down.
    Thank you for the lovely pattern, I just wish sizing wasn't so different.

  11. I was stuck on row 5 with the Slip one, K2, PSSO. Once I read Glimer Girl's comment I was able to understand my error and continue. Love the comments and answers, great help. Can't wait to finish. Thank you!

  12. So I was having problems with this pattern and this is how I fixed it:

    After the 9 rows of ribbing and row one of the original pattern I did the following:

    Row 2: k2,p8 repeat across
    Row 3: k2, k2tog, yo, k1, yo, ssk, k1, p2 repeat across
    Row 4: k2, p8 repeat across
    Row 5: k1, k2tog, yo, slip 1, k2 yo, ssk, p2 repeat across
    Row 6: k2, p8 repeat across
    Row 7: k4, yo, k1, ssk, k1, p2 repeat across
    Repeat from 2-7 4 times then the 5th time do rows 2-5. Then in row 6 I k2, p4, p2tog, p2 to the end to get back down to the original 54 stitches.

    Then finish with the 9 rows of ribbing.


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