Buachaille Baffies — A Travel Project

Happy New Year to all!  I know that all of us at The Stitchin' Den wish you a healthy, happy, and crafty 2022!

When I left you in 2021, I was beginning a small travel project, Buachaille Baffies (baffies is the Scots’ name for house slippers). The Buachaille Baffies seemed like just the right-sized project for a Christmas trip on the plane. And they were. All I needed were a couple of 50-gram skeins of Kenzie yarn, a few stitch markers, 2 sets of circular needles, and my pattern. The project was compact enough to fit in a small bag.

Buachaille Baffies Scottish Slippers

The pattern called for starting at the toe with a Turkish cast on. This was new to me, so I found a great set of directions by Andrea Mowry, on YouTube (see below) and cast on the first slipper toe before I left home.

Once I was on the plane, I was ready to settle in and knit. The stranded-knit pattern was straight-forward with only two colors that repeated four times for 39 rows, so it didn't take long to knit the first section. You never carry the yarn more than five stitches, so I really did not even have to worry about catching floats. The heel was a series of garter stitch rows. After a three-needle bind-off, I knitted an I-cord bind off to finish the slipper. If you are interested in learning more about an I-cord bind off, you can view the tutorial below by Knit Purl Hunter. It is a nice, neat way to finish an edge. In this case, it also provided some extra stability to the top edges of the slippers, which will receive some stretching as they are pulled on and off.

After I tried my slippers on, I decided to felt them slightly. They were just a tad larger than I liked. They are designed to have a snug fit, but the toes on mine were pretty roomy. I ran them through a normal cycle of my front-load washer with a load of sheets, and that did the trick. They hug my feet better and the fabric has a nice, warm density. They look pretty, too.

I definitely will knit this pattern again; however, I have learned a few things that will make the next pair better.

  • Next time I will use a worsted weight yarn and swatch with size 3 and 4 needles to produce a tighter toe section.
  • The stranded knitting helped the body of the slipper to fit tighter than the toe, so I will make sure to watch the tension or go up a needle size for the colorwork.
  • These are terrific stash busters and will make great Christmas presents for next year. I have already started another pair to put aside for just that purpose.

I hope that your new year of crafting is off to a good start. This is a good time to appreciate what you accomplished in 2021 and make some great projects for 2022. And, I'm looking forward to taking a couple of classes from our gifted instructors at The Stitchin' Den.

You might just want to check out one of our classes!

Andrea Mowry's Turkish Cast on video.

Knit Purl Hunter's video for an i-cord bind off.