Friday, November 21, 2014

Superhero Mask Blueprints: Spiderman

Here is a rough guide on how I made my son's Spiderman mask this year. It is constructed top-down, in the round using double point needles and a circular needle (US6). 

I used: 
a full skein of Red Heart Super Saver (worsted weight), 
black puffy paint, 
some spare fiberglass screening I had laying around,
and some ribbon. No I didn't measure the ribbon... Sorry.

Cast on 6 stitches.
Join and knit in round, increasing in each stitch. 12 stitches
Knit every other row.
Row 3: increase in each stitch. 24 stitches
Row 5: increase every other stitch. 36 stitches
Row 7: increase every other stitch. 54 stitches

Here's where increasing gets a little hairy. I increased in every stitch for the next few increase rows and I ended up with 187 stitches. This was too much for a four year old head. I cast off with 80 stitches eventually. If I were to do this again, I would definitely only increase to about 120 stitches for that size. Unfortunately I can't offer more specific help since you have to increase based on the age you're knitting for. If you need to increase more, don't do it every stitch because it grows too fast and it will get ruffly or wavy.

When you have increased until the crown is large enough to cover the entire top surface of the head, knit in the round for four inches or until the hat fits just above the eyebrows.

Eye openings
Work 30 stitches (just pick some) as follows:
Row 1: K2tog, knit to last two stitches, k2tog
Row 2: Purl
Repeat those two rows until you have 8 stitches left.
Right side row: K2tog, k1, k2tog, k1, k2tog (5 stitches remain)
Wrong side: purl
Right side: knit 2tog, k1, k2tog, put stitches on separate double point needle or some scrap yarn.

Work remainder of head as follows:
Right side rows: increase one stitch at each end
Wrong side row: purl
*A note: I decreased almost 20 stitches throughout this section due to the fact that I increased too many stitches initially. I decreased in the back of the head so it would be fitted around the curve of the head while increasing at either end.

Repeat until you have approximately 22 rows (a few rows shorter than the piece you have set aside). At the beginning of next two rows, cast on 5 stitches.
Work one more right side row, picking up the three stitches you had saved from the center of the eye holes, so that you are working in the round knitting on the right side again. I also did a slip one-k2tog-psso decrease where those center three stitches were. I repeated that decrease in the same spot about three times.
If needed, after trying the mask on the intended recipient and it looks like it will be loose, decrease every five stitches (every 4 stitches, 3, etc until it fits well without being too difficult to put on). Do not go below 80 stitches for a toddler-sized mask. Bind off.
It will look naked and sad. This will change.

Cut a piece of screening in the shape of the eye openings. Make sure the screen is folded in half so that both sides are connected. I folded a black ribbon in half all the way around for a border. You might also choose to make an i-cord or use bias tape or nothing at all around the eyes. Sew in place (I machine sewed this piece on).
We're getting somewhere now...

 Using puff paint, lightly add webbing lines. Let dry. If you're lazy like me you'll just do the front. Be a supermom and do the back too though... Haha!
Let your little hero play and have fun. Hope this helped steer someone in the right direction for making this. Comment if any of the instructions are too confusing and I'll do my best to edit it.

Marigolds' Loft