Knitted nativity scene

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Knitted nativity scene

Materials
Panda Disco 8ply (20g balls): 1 ball each of colours as follows: Sky 138, Royal 103, White 101, Dark Green 147, Koala 146, Yellow 125, Rust 149, Hot Pink 166, Rose 136, Orange 145, Purple 130, Bright Blue 144, Lavender 127, Steel 134, Dark Grey 135, Bright Green 141, Nutmeg 111, Black 113, Pale Yellow 112

2 balls of each of Cream 108 and Red 106

3 balls of Flesh 148

One pair 3.00mm knitting needles, or the required size to give correct tension

Polyester filling

5cm circle of stiff cardboard for each figure

Fabric glue

Red pencil (optional)

25cm narrow gold cord and transparent thread for Mary and Baby Jesus

Plastic drinking straw for Joseph

Plastic bendable drinking straw and pipe-cleaner for Shepherd

Knitter's needle

Measurements
Figures: approx 15cm high. Sheep: approx 10cm high.
Tension. These items have been designed at a tension of 26 sts and 36 rows to 10cm over stocking st, using 3.00mm needles.

Abbreviations
Alt: alternate
beg: begin, beginning
cm: centimetres
cont: continue
dec: decrease, decreasing
foll: follows, following
garter st: every row knit
inc: increase, increasing
include: inclusive, including
K: knit
'M1' (make 1): pick up loop which lies before next st, place on left-hand needle and knit into back of loop
tog: together.

NOTE: All pieces are worked in stocking st unless otherwise stated.


TO MAKE BASIC FIGURES BODY AND HEAD (make 1 piece)
Using 3.00mm needles and robe colour (stated for individual figures), cast on 35 sts.
Work 20 rows stocking st.
Shape waist. Next row. (K3, K2tog) to endà28 sts.
Work 11 rows.
Shape neck. Next row. (K2tog) to endà14 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Change to flesh colour and work 2 rows.
Shape head. Next row. Inc in every stà28 sts.
Work 13 rows.
Shape top of head. Next row. K1, (K1, K2tog) to endà19 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. K1 (K2tog) to endà10 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

BASE
With right sides of work facing, pick up and knit 35 sts from cast on edge, using same colour yarn.
Knit 2 rows. Purl 1 row.
Shape base. Next row. (K3, K2tog) to endà28 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2, K2tog) to endà21 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K1, K2tog) to endà14 sts.
Next row. (P2tog) to endà7 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

ARMS (make 2 pieces)
Using sleeve colour (as stated), cast on 6 sts.
Work 2 rows.
Inc one st at beg only of next 6 rowsà12 sts.
Work 4 rows.
Change to flesh colour and work 5 rows.
Shape base of hand. Next row. (P2tog) to endà6 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

To make up
Join body seam from centre of base to neck edge. Glue card circle in base and stuff body firmly. Stuff head firmly, then sew up head seam. Run a gathering thread through first row of flesh colour on head, draw up to shape neck and fasten of securely. Join arm seams, leaving shaped edge open. Stuff firmly, then position and sew onto body. Embroider features as folls: fastening off ends of yarn at back of head, count 9 sts up from neck edge in centre of face and work 5 sts in flesh colour over one knit st to form nose. Work French knots in black for eyes, leaving 3 knit sts between, work 2 straight sts in red for mouth. If desired, blush cheeks lightly with red pencil.


HAIR LOOPS
Make loops by winding yarn around pencil 3 times. Sew loops tog securely then slip off pencil. Darn the yarn ends into the figure securely.

TWISTED CORD
Cut a length of yarn, 4 times required finished length, and knot end tog. Fix knot to a surface with a drawing pin (or get someone to hold it), pull yarn taut, place a pencil in looped end, twist yarn tightly. Bring looped and knotted ends tog and let cord twist. Knot ends and trim.

MARY
Robe. Working as given for Body of Basic Figure.
Work 10 rows sky, 18 rows royal and 6 rows white.
Work sleeves in royal.
Veil. Using sky, cast on 24 sts.
Work 26 rows.
*Next row. (K1, K2tog) to end ...16 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 8 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

BABY JESUS
Using cream, cast on 11 sts.
Work 2 rows.
Next row. Inc in every st à 22 sts.
Work 9 rows.
Shape neck. Next row. K1, (K2tog, K1) to end à 15 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Change to flesh colour, work 8 rows.
Next row. K1, (K2tog) to endà 8 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

MARY AND BABY JESUS
To make up:
Sew veil to Mary's head; sew three bunches of pale yellow hair loops in place. Join seams on Jesus, leaving case on edge open. Stuff firmly, gather round opening, draw up tightly and secure. Gather around neck as before and embroider face with tiny straight stitches, adding two flesh-coloured loops for ears. If desired, blush cheeks with a red pencil. Sew Mary's arms in position, holding Baby Jesus. Cut a 15cm length of gold cord for Mary's halo and a 10cm length of gold cord for Baby Jesus' halo. Knot ends, then sew in place as illustrated, using transparent thread.

JOSEPH
Robe. Using red and flesh, make body and sleeves, as given for Basic Figure.
Shawl. Using dark green, cast on 7sts.
Work 70 rows garter st.
Cast off.
Hair. Using koala, cast on 24 sts.
Work 8 rows garter st.
Change to stocking st, beg with a knit row, and work 10 rows.
Work as for Mary's Veil from * to end.
Beard. Using koala, cast on 3 sts.
Knit 1 row.
Next row. K2, inc in next st à 4 sts.
Next row. K2tog, K2 à 3 sts.
Rep last 2 rows 10 times (22 rows in all).
Knit 1 row. Cast off.
Lantern. Using black, cast on 18 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Cont in stocking st, beg with a purl row, work 4 rows yellow, 1 row black, 4 rows yellow.
Cont in black and knit 3 rows.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K1, K2tog) to end à 12 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 6 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.
Lantern pole. Using rust, cast on 40 sts.
Work 4 rows. Cast off.

To make up
Sew hair and beard in place; add a bunch of hair loops to top of head. Place shawl over shoulder and tie around waist with a nutmeg twisted cord. Sew knitted strip, purl side out , round a 15cm length of straw for lantern pole. Join lantern seam, work 4 vertical lines of black chain stitch at 4 knit st intervals. Sew top of lantern to pole; sew pole to hand and base of robe.

KING WITH TURBAN
Robe. Working as given for Body of Basic Figure. Work 18 rows hot pink, 16 rows rose, Work sleeves in hot pink.
Casket. Using orange cast on 10 sts.
Work 2 rows.
Next row. Inc in every st à 20 sts.
Work 11 rows.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 10 sts.
Purl 1 row. Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.
Turban. Using purple, cast on 36 sts.
Work 13 rows garter st.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2, K2tog) to end à 27 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K1, K2tog) to end à 18 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 9 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

To make up
Wind a length of purple twisted cord around waist twice.; tie. Join turban seam, gather garter st section of seam; sew in place on head. Trim with bunch of hot pink hair loops to resemble feathers and embroider a jewel in blue. Sew bunches of black hair loops in place. Gather 5 rows in from one end of casket and trim with orange cord to form lid. Thread ends of cord into casket; sew onto hands.

KING WITH CROWN
Robe. Working as given for Body of Basic Figure. Work 18 rows lavender, 16 rows purple. Work sleeves in purple, hair in steel, shawl in bright blue and the casket (see King with Turban) in yellow.
Crown. Using orange, cast on 32 sts.
Work 2 rows.
Next row. ('M1', K2tog ) to end.
Work 2 rows. Cast off.

To make up
Sew hair in place and tie shawl at waist with orange twisted cord. Sew steel loops in place for beard. Join short ends of crown; fold in half, sew cast on and cast off edges together and sew in place on head. Join casket seam, leaving cast on edge open. Stuff firmly, run a gathering thread round opening, draw up tightly and secure. Wrap yellow twisted cord around casket; knot at front. Thread ends of cord into casket; sew casket to hands.

KING WITH BEARD
Robe. Working as given for Body of Basic Figure. Work 10 rows bright blue, 24 rows bright green. Work sleeves in bright green, veil in red, casket (see King with Turban) in pale yellow, beard in rust, crown in yellow.
Sash. Using red, cast on 24 sts.
Knit 1 row. Cast off.

To make up
Sew sash around waist. Sew veil, crown, beard and casket in place.

SHEPHERD
Robe. Working as given for Body of Basic Figure. Work 10 rows nutmeg, 24 rows rust.
Work sleeves in rust, veil in koala, and lantern pole in koala.
Headband. Using rust, cast on 32 sts.
Knit 1 row. Cast off.

To make up
Sew veil in place, join short ends of headband; sew in place over veil. Wrap brown twisted cord around bodice, crossing at front and back and tying at front. Cut a 15cm length of bendable straw, leaving 2.5cm in straight piece before pleated section of straw. Cover with knitted strip as for lantern pole, bend end for crook; sew to hand and base of robe.

SHEEP
BODY (make 1 piece)
Using cream, cast on 15 sts and work in garter st throughout body.
Work 2 rows.
Next row. Inc in every st à 30 sts.
Work 37 rows.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 15 sts.
Work 1 row. Cast off.
HEAD (make 1 piece)
Using cream, cast on 14 sts.
Knit 2 rows.
Next row. Inc in every st à 28 sts.
Knit 4 rows.
Change to dark grey and purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2, K2tog) to end à 21 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K1, K2tog) to end à 14 sts.
Purl 1 row.
Next row. (K2tog) to end à 7 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.
LEGS (make 4 pieces)
Using dark grey, cast on 10 sts.
Work 9 rows.
Next row. (P2tog) to end à 5 sts.
Break yarn, thread end through rem sts, draw up and fasten off securely.

EARS (make 2 pieces)
Using dark grey, cast on 4 sts. Cast off.

To make up
Fold body in half and join side seam and across one end. Stuff firmly; join opening. Join head seam, leaving cast on edge open. Stuff firmly, position and sew onto body. Join leg seams, leaving cast on edge open, stuff firmly; sew in place. Sew ears to sides of head. Using black yarn and French knots, embroider eyes.
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