Jianzhi by Kathleen Sperling


January 2015
DK (11 wpi) ?
34 stitches and 25 rows = 4 inches
in Double knitted stocking stitch on 3.75mm needles (17 sts/4" per side)
US 5 - 3.75 mm
US 7 - 4.5 mm
310 yards (283 m)
One size
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This pattern is available from wipinsanity.blogspot.com for $3.99.

When gift-giving occasions come around for my children’s teachers, I like to knit things. It makes their presents unique and special; and let’s face it, teachers spend a lot of time out in cold playgrounds, so anything that helps keep them warm is a big plus.

When my eldest was in grade four, I wanted to knit her teacher a cowl, but was stumped as to what sort of pattern to put on it. I decided to turn to the teacher’s Chinese heritage for ideas, and Googled around a bit to see what I could find. What I discovered was an absolute treasure trove of gorgeous inspiration and stunning artistry: “Jianzhi”, the Chinese art of papercutting, traditionally done with red paper and displayed with a white background.

Adapting one of the background designs I found into knitting gave me a great motif, and this cowl is the end result. It uses the double knitting technique to make an accessory which is not only reversible, but double-thick; sure to keep you warm even on a freezing day!

Other buying options:
* Etsy

Skills Required

  • knitting
  • purling
  • working in the round
  • chart reading
  • double knitting know-how (explained in pattern)

Size Information

Adult - one size fits all. Finished measurements: 25” circumference, 8.5” height.

Yarn Requirements

Approximately 155 yards of each colour

Other Materials Needed

  • stitch marker