Belfry by Hunter Hammersen


no longer available from 1 source show
November 2020
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
blocked stockinette
50 - 150 yards (46 - 137 m)
Three sizes. My building is about 1.25 inches on the short sides, 2.5 inches on the long sides, and 3.25 inches tall, though this is adjustable.
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This pattern (along with most of my earlier work) was retired in the summer of 2022. However, it may be available for a few days once or twice a year. Read on for details!

In the summer of 2022, I realized that maintaining a back catalog of hundreds of patterns was kind of overwhelming. I couldn’t do it and still release new things. So I took my old patterns down so I could keep doing new work.

Since then, a handful of my favorites have come back, and lovely new things have come out. But the vast majority of the old patterns are retired and will no longer be generally available.

However, enough folks have asked about some old favorites that I’m planning to make many of the retired patterns available for a few days once or twice a year (most likely in late spring and then again in the fall around Thanksgiving).

  • If you see the buy buttons on this page, you’ve caught it on one of the days it’s available, and you’re welcome to grab it!
  • If you don’t see the buy buttons on this page, then it’s not currently available.
  • If you want to hear when the retired patterns will be available, subscribe to the mailing list or patreon, or keep an eye on my instagram.

Belfry noun a bell tower, especially one surmounting or attached to another structure

This is a companion to Chimney and Foghorn (the houses and lighthouse in the pictures at the bottom of this page).

So, your little village, your little village full of adorable houses, was it missing something? Because I think maybe it was. I think maybe it needs a church. Or maybe a school house. Or maybe a town hall.

It’s totally up to you what you decide it wants to be. But once your town reaches a certain size, you’re going to need some municipal structure. This should totally help!

What to do with the sweet, silly little things:

  • Round out your village with some lovely new buildings
  • Make your kid’s teacher the perfect little red schoolhouse
  • Make a tiny version of your church or the church a friend got married in
  • Knit a Christmas ornament

Your imagination is the limit here. I suspect you already have a whole host of ideas for exactly how you could use a few of these!

The pattern is tremendously detailed. It’s written for three different stitch counts, and you can adjust your gauge a bit to get a wide variety of finished sizes (and work with a variety of different yarns).

The knitting is easy. The walls of the building are all knit in one piece, and they’re mostly stockinette and mostly knit in the round. The roof is knit flat (and is far smaller than a respectable swatch so you’ll be done in no time). The only sewing is the seam at the end where you attach the roof to the building (and it doesn’t really show when you’re done, so you don’t have to be especially tidy about it, I totally wasn’t).

Each building took less than 50 yards of yarn for the walls and less than 50 yards of yarn for the roof (if you’re making bigger buildings, you should be able to make them with less than 75 for the walls and less than 75 yards for the roof). I used a fingering weight, single ply yarn, but anything that will give you a smooth, dense fabric is fine (this is a great project for using up yarn scraps). The windows and doors are duplicate stitched on with embroidery floss once the knitting is finished.

I’ve stuffed my building with blocks, which give the finished pieces a delightful heft and structure. I’ve got a blog post up over here with more information about the exact blocks I used, but almost any set of kids’ blocks will work great. If you don’t want to use blocks, I’ve also included templates you can print out and assemble to make your own out of card stock. Or if you’re the industrious type, I’ve heard from people who have cut upholstery foam to size or assembled blocks out of plastic canvas. So you do have options! But I think toy blocks are going to be your easiest and most satisfying choice.

Oh and if you’re feeling nervous about knitting something tiny and 3D, don’t worry. The pattern includes a lengthy photo tutorial with pages and pages of step-by-step photos to walk you through every part of the process. There’s also a worksheet to help you figure out your gauge (in case you’re using different size blocks than I did), a resource guide with links to techniques you might need, a printable grid so you can sketch out your windows and doors, and printouts you can use to assemble your own shapes if you don’t want to track down blocks.

The pattern is 28 pages long and holds your hand the whole way through. There are lots of pictures and lots of cheer leading and encouragement. If you take it step by step, you can totally do this!

Oh, and just to be super clear so no one misunderstands, this pattern is for the two-level building shown in the first two pictures (the one with a tower on the front of the building). The houses that accompany it in the other pictures are in the Chimney pattern.

These are perfect for you if:

  • You knew there was a reason you had a box of blocks kicking around in the basement
  • Your townsfolk have been petitioning for some city improvements

They’re not for you if:

  • You don’t like charts (the pattern uses charts)
  • You are a respectable grownup at all times and couldn’t possibly let anyone know you made something so absurd