Mystery Cushion Club 2020: the final instalment! Post 5, October

HELLO AND WELCOME TO THE FINAL INSTALMENT OF THE 2020 MYSTERY CUSHION CLUB! And so, we are here at last, with the ‘mystery’ about to be unveiled for this year’s Club! It seems a long time ago that we made a start on this knitting journey back in June. Haven’t the months flown by fast!?!

 

Hopefully for many of you this project has given you something positive to focus on while we live through the global pandemic. We’ve all been in need of a distraction from what is going on around us and knitting is the perfect escape, giving us a cosy, familiar place to go to where we can relax and immerse ourselves in gorgeous yarns and patterns. So I hope you have enjoyed your Mystery Cushion journey so far and are as excited as me about this final piece of the puzzle…

FOR THE REVEAL OF THE MYSTERY CUSHION THEME I HAVE MADE A SHORT FILM IN WHICH I TELL YOU ALL ABOUT THIS YEAR’S DESIGN AND THE INSPIRATION FOR IT - and you can view it right here! Simply click on the screen below to reveal the ‘mystery’! 



THE OCTOBER PATTERNS – THE FINAL SET! - WERE EMAILED TO ALL THE MEMBERS ON THE 15th OCTOBER, so you all should have received them by now. The printed patterns (for those who paid for them), were posted to overseas members on the 6th October and to the UK members on the 12th October. If they have not arrived yet, then they should be with you soon.

THERE IS A PATTERN ADDENDUM ON PAGE 6, it’s at the end of the Pattern notes and tips. There is an instruction to block, press and then join together the front panel squares. However, you have already been instructed to do this in Mail Out 4, so please ignore this instruction.

UNFORTUNATELY THERE IS ANOTHER ADDENDUM – OR RATHER OMISSION – ON PAGE 7. Under ‘Finishing’ there is no instruction to sew the Upper Back Panel to the Front Panel. This should be done after blocking and pressing the Lower Back Panel. Please see my advice further on in the blog about how to sew this into place.

THIS IS THE FINAL PANEL TO KNIT THIS MONTH:
LOWER BACK PANEL:
Snakeskin – lace pattern with hooked-in beads:

And here’s some extra advice on this panel to help you with your knitting this month…

LOWER BACK PANEL, SNAKESKIN: this panel is created by picking up the stitches along the cast-on edge of the completed Front Panel. It’s an all-over beaded pattern repeat and it has a variable stitch count, which means that you won’t always have the same number of stitches on your needle at the end of every row. To help you with this I have stated what number you should have at the end of each row so that you can check it as you go along.

The beads are hooked-in, but on page 6 I suggest that you thread them onto a length of spare yarn before you start to knit this panel so that you can slide them off in the correct order to use. You might want to follow this advice, or alternatively have them in four separate bowls which you will need to rotate in the correct order.

To pick up the stitches along the cast-on edge I would suggest that you slide the knitting needle through the middle of the very first stitch you can see above the cast-on edge. Because you are holding the Front Panel upside down, each stitch will look like an upside down ‘V’, so you need to put your needle through the middle of the two legs of the ‘V’.

The pattern repeat is eight rows long, and you repeat this eight times more after the initial first eight rows have been completed. If you are unsure about any of the abbreviations in the pattern rows they are all explained on page 11 of your mail out. I am quite certain that you have come across all of these before in this project, except for ‘M3’ – which is make three (knit into front, back, front of stitch).

After Row 80 you cut off the Turquoise yarn and knit a garter stitch striped button-band. This is shown on the image in page 6 but it not shown on the Piecing diagram on page 4. If you find that the Lower Back Panel is either too long or too short and therefore the button-band is not meeting up with the buttonholes on the Upper Back Panel, you may have to knit more or fewer rows of the eight row pattern repeat to make it the correct length for your cushion. Which brings me to the instruction I missed out about sewing down the Upper Back Panel, so here goes!...

FINISHING INSTRUCTIONS… I began sewing the Upper Back Panel to the Front Panel beginning at the top (where it has been joined to the Front Panel) and finished at the end of the buttonhole band. To give you some guidance, this image shows where the buttonhole band meets the Front Panel:

I used Mattress stitch to sew together all my side seams, however I can’t remember which colour yarn I used - oh dear! But it doesn’t actually matter which colour you use as Mattress stitch is an invisible seam and it won’t be seen. So I suggest that you use whatever you have the most left over of, or use a spare length if you kept hold of all your bits and pieces.

As I said above, you might need to adjust the number of rows in your Lower Back Panel if the buttonholes are not lining up correctly with the button-band. You will need to make that decision and take any necessary action before you sew the Lower Back Panel into place.

After completing the Lower Back Panel, you then need to move onto putting the final touches to your cushion-cover, instructions for which you will find on page 7. This includes marking out the position of the buttons on the button-band and joining the sides seams of the Lower Back Panel to the Front Panel, before finally sewing on the buttons.

You will need six buttons for the fastenings. I chose medium-sized white buttons that have four holes. But you can have fun choosing whatever you want for your Mystery Cushion!

There is an option to add pom-poms to the four corners of your cushion, which is not necessary but I think it’s a cute little finishing touch. I used a Clover Pom Pom Maker, advice for which you can find on page 7. But alternatively you could use the method of making them from pieces of circular card if you don’t have this piece of kit.

Finally you need to stuff your cushion-cover with a pad. It is advisable to take your completed cushion-cover to the shop when you purchase your pad to check that you choose the right size. I used a 40cm x 40cm (16in x 16in) cushion-pad for my cushion-cover, however, if you did not match the given tension in the pattern instructions then you might find that you need either a bigger or smaller pad than this. But that won’t matter – your cushion-cover will look stunning whatever size pad you use!

And there we are – your 2020 Mystery Cushion is finished – well done to all of you!

IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR A NEW PROJECT AND SOMETHING TO BRIGHTEN UP YOUR DAY, BEADYKNITS HAVE LAUNCHED A NEW KIT IN THEIR COLLECTION – and you can place an order for it right now!

Following on from the success of the pillow Cushion Cover kits, BeadyKnits have created a new 'square' shaped design in the colourway Mexicana.

 

The design features the following knitting techniques: fairisle, beading (slip stitch and hooked), buttonholes and garter stitch. This cushion is the ideal companion to the original pillow in the same design.

The kit contains quality Rico Cotton Essentials DK yarns and Debbie Abraham's size 6 glass beads, 6 buttons and full colour pattern instructions for the chosen design (you must supply your own knitting needles and a sewing-up needle).

Cushion cover knitting kit prices:

Knitting kit: £36

Shipping:

UK: £3.10

EUROPE: £7.25

USA: £15.18

WORLD ZONE 1: £11.25

WORLD ZONE 2: £13.20

For further information and to place you order, please contact Jenny directly at jenny@beadyknits.com

Please note that these kits are not available to buy in our online shop, they must be purchased from BeadyKnits.

IF ARE YOU UP FOR ANOTHER MYSTERY CUSHION CLUB ADVENTURE NEXT YEAR THEN APPLICATIONS WILL OPEN FOR OUR 2021 MYSTERY CUSHION CLUB IN MARCH 2021. Memberships for this Club are limited to 200, but you will all be notified when the signing up begins via an emailed newsletter to ensure that you don’t miss out. I am not going to reveal anything about the theme and the yarn yet, but I will give you some pointers in the newsletter that we will send out in March. And don’t forget that if you have signed up for the 2021 Mystery Blanket Club, you will get a discount on your 2021 Mystery Cushion Club membership. The discount code to be used at checkout will be given to all Mystery Blanket members when the new Club begins in February.

AND LASTLY, TO CELEBRATE 10-YEARS OF THE MYSTERY CUSHION CLUB WE HAVE A SPECIAL ANNIVERSARY CALENDAR FOR 2021! The calendar features all ten of the Mystery Cushion designs from 2011-2020 in a full-colour wall-hanging booklet format (A3 size when opened). So you can see all ten designs in one go and enjoy them throughout the whole of next year.

Below: Mystery Cushion 2017, Metropolis.

The calendar will be available to purchase in our online shop in a couple of weeks time, but we will notify you by email as soon as it is launched. And don't forget that the first fifty members who signed up for this year's Mystery Cushion Club will all receive a free calendar, so if that's you, simply sit back and wait for it to arrive!

Thank you for joining me on this journey and I hope that you have enjoyed the project as much as I have enjoyed designing it. It has been a very strange year with many of us confined to our homes but knitting has been a life saver and has helped to keep us busy and focused. So as the year continues with some uncertainty I do hope that you continue to enjoy all your knitting projects and find plenty more to keep you occupied until the end of year. And then in the new year there will brand new ‘mystery’ knitting adventures beginning with the 2021 Mystery Blanket Club in February, followed by the 2021 Mystery Cushion Club in June. So until then I wish you happy knitting, whatever you have on your needles, and I hope to see some of you next year for more ‘mystery’ knitting fun! Take care and keep safe and well, Debbie x


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