Split Crotch Longies

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					                       Split Crotch Longies

Use these like a diaper belt with attached legwarmers! They have an elastic-casing
waist with a hidden slit, so you can knit them large and change out the elastic for a
longer piece later without unpicking any yarn seams. The elastic should allow you to
hold up a folded flat, a tea towel, thin prefold, or whatever. These instructions are for
magic loop with a 40" circular needle but you can as easily use a shorter circular
needle for the first half and double pointed needles for the legs.
Gauge: 4.5-5.0 stitches per inch in stockinette.

For a newborn size: cast on 74 stitches (14 inches plus 4 stitches) on e.g. size 7
circular needles. Do not join in the round yet. (Larger sizes: Add 2" (10 st) for each
size: small 84, medium 94, large 104.) These photos show a long-tail cast-on.

Rows 1-4: Work in stockinette stitch. The waistband is now a little less than 1".

Row 5: At the start of a right-side (knit) row, bind off 4 stitches (70 stitches remain.)
Knit to the end of the row.

Row 6:
Push your work to the other end of the needle, and turn it so that the "right side" faces
you. On your left hand needle you see the end with the bound-off stitches. On your
right hand needle you see the working yarn. Make sure your work is not twisted and
join in the round (knit into the first stitch on the left needle without thinking too hard
about it.) Knit this round.

Round 7: Purl this round to make a crease where we will fold the elastic casing.

Now knit until you have the same length (about an inch) on each side of the purl
round: 6 or 7 rounds.
Round 14 (or so):
Now we will close up the elastic casing by knitting each stitch together with a cast-on
stitch. Here's how.
Fold the bottom of the knitting behind and up (along the purl crease) so that the cast-
on stitches are directly behind the live stitches on the needle. Here is the beginning of
the round before folding:
Here it is after folding:

Find the cast-on stitch that is the ancestor of the first stitch on your left needle. Here I
am pinching it in my right hand:
Pick up the right leg of the cast-on stitch onto any convenient needle (here I show it on
the right needle before moving it to the left needle, but it is faster to pick it up directly
onto the left needle.)

Here is the cast-on stitch picked up onto the left needle:
Now K2tog (knit the cast-on stitch together with the next stitch.)

Continue to pick up a cast-on stitch and knit it together with the next live stitch for the
rest of the round! If you are still not sure what I'm picking up, take a look here.

This is the back side of the work; the cast-on stitches are at the bottom, each with their
right leg swooping diagonally downward and to the left, crossing over the left leg.
These right legs or big swoops are what I am picking up (the left needle is poking
through one right now.)


Now you have a closed hem at the top of the pants. At the start of the round, on the
inside of the hem, there is a slit to insert elastic and a flap to tuck in over the elastic so
that none is exposed through the slit. When the pants are finished you will insert the
elastic, safety-pin the ends, check size on your child, and sew the ends of the elastic
together (machine or hand-sewing), then tuck in the knit flap.

Knit 1 round. Next we will split the crotch.

Knit 35 stitches (half a round). These are the stitches that will become one of the two
legwarmers. Drop your working yarn. Tie on another ball of working yarn and knit the
remaining 35 stitches. These are the stitches that will become the other of the two
legwarmers. If you think you will have any trouble remembering to change yarns
(instead of working across the gap and having to rip back) you can always choose two
different colors of yarn that coordinate with the waistband! Fashion statement!

Turn your work (and flip the waistband inside out). We are not in the round anymore.

At this point we are going to split into the two future legs and work flat for a while. You
can knit in plain stockinette (which will curl in at the edges of the split crotch, making
the split wider) or you can put a border of some kind on it. Here are instructions for a
seed stitch border.

Stockinette with a one-inch seed stitch border:

Row 1: wrong side:
{P1, K1} 3 times. P 29. {K1, P1} 3 times. (total of 35 stitches)
Remember to pick up the other working yarn.
{P1, K1} 3 times. P 29. {K1, P1} 3 times. (total of 35 stitches). Turn your work.

Row 2: right side:
{P1, K1} 3 times. K 29. {K1, P1} 3 times. Change yarn! Repeat on other leg.

Repeat Row 1 and Row 2 until you have enough rise. (For newborn size you want at
least 6.5 inches from the top of the waistband to your needles. The stockinette portion
will measure longer than the seed stitch portion by its nature.)

Join each leg in the round as follows:
At the end of a purl (wrong side) row when you've finished the row for both legs:
Instead of turning the work to do the "right side" of the leg you just finished, you will lay
the work out right side out, take the other leg and count to its center, pull some needle
cable through at the center so that the leg is folded in half... your longies will look like
The working yarn for this leg is located at the back edge now, and you will simply go
on to knit the front edge using that yarn, joining the leg in the round.

(Take the right needle behind the cable and in front of the working yarn. Insert into the
first stitch on left needle. Knit this stitch. Insert right needle into the next stitch and pull
your working yarn to snug up the first stitch you knit. Then just knit everything.)
(If you're not into magic loop, just switch to double pointed needles to knit the legs
instead. No one is watching.)

Knit all the way around this leg (front side and back side.) Drop its working yarn. Now
you are in the same position at the other leg; pick up its working yarn in the same way
and knit all the way around the leg, joining it in the round.

Keep knitting (a round on each leg if you are magic looping, or one leg at a time if
using DPNs) until each leg measures 5 inches. Switch to needles that are two sizes
smaller and knit 1-2 inches of k1p1 ribbing. Bind off, not too tightly. Here is a bind-off
that is not super tight:

*K2tog. Slip the new stitch that you just made back onto your left needle.*
Repeat between *'s until you have one stitch left (then cut your yarn a few inches from
your work, thread it on a needle, run it through the stitch, and do whatever you like to
do with yarn tails.)

Almost done!

If the 4-stitch flap is tucked into your waistband slit, pull it out now. Cut a piece of
elastic (the elastic package will probably suggest how long to make it; slightly smaller
than the wearer's waist) and pin a large safety pin through one end. Put the pin into
the slit in your elastic casing waistband and work it around the waist (holding onto the
other end of the elastic) until it comes back out the slit from the other direction. Overlap
the ends of your elastic by 1/2"-1" and pin them together with a safety pin. Try it on for
size, re-pinning to fit more snugly if necessary, then sew the ends of the elastic
together, remove the pin, let go of the elastic, stretch the waistband to pull the elastic
through the slit so that none is visible, and tuck in the 4-stitch flap to hide the slit.

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