Hand-knit slippers customised for fit make warm and practical gifts. These boot-style slippers knit up from heel to toe quickly and are suitable for beginning knitters who know how to cast on, knit, purl, bind off and decrease. If you use a natural animal fibre yarn (wool, angora, etc.) and knit the slippers a couple of sizes too large, you can run them through the hot/cold water cycle of the washing machine a couple of times to create felted slippers.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Bulky weight yarn
- Straight or circular needles (Size 9 US, or one size smaller than the needle size indicated on the label of your yarn)
- Tape measure
- Yarn needle
Cast on 25 stitches and knit each row until you have a square of material. The material should be as stiff or floppy as you want the slippers to be. To increase the stiffness of the material, go down a needle size and knit another swatch.
Bind off, but do not cut the yarn if you wish to reuse it.
Starting one or two stitches in from the edge of your square, count the number of stitches in 4 inches of width of your knitting. Divide this number by four to get stitches per inch (st/in). Record this number.
Starting one or two rows up from the bottom of your square, count the number of rows in 4 inches of length. Divide this number by four to get your rows per inch (row/in). Record this number.
Unravel your swatch if you wish to reuse your yarn.
Knit a swatch
Run the measuring tape from where you want the slipper to stop on your leg, down the ankle to the centre of the heel sole. Multiply this measurement by two, and then by the st/in value from your swatch. This value will be X, the number of stitches to cast on.
Measure from where you want the slipper to stop on your leg to the top of the foot where the instep begins. Multiply this measurement by the st/in value from your swatch. This value will be Y, the number of stitches to bind off at the instep.
Measure from the back of the heel to the beginning of the instep. Multiply this measurement by your row/in value. This value will be Z.
Calculate slipper length and width
Cast on X stitches.
Knit each row for Z rows, until the knitting is long enough to cover the ankle and heel of the foot.
Bind off Y stitches where the instep begins. K1, P1 until the last Y stitches. Bind off Y more stitches.
Continue in K1, P1 ribbing over remaining stitches until knitting is long enough to cover toes.
Bind off at toes, leaving 24 inches of yarn for seaming.
Fold the knitting in half so it forms a boot shape.
Thread the yarn tail through the yarn needle, and sew the toe and front seam of the slipper together, leaving room at the ankle for the foot to slip through.
Knit the slippers
Tips and warnings
- Paint dots or lines on the bottom of the slippers with puffy fabric paint to create a slip-free sole.
- Turn any sock pattern into a slipper pattern by using a bulky yarn and cropping the cuff length.
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