With the extended version of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (Two-Disc Special Edition) just out (I recommend watching that, by the way, much improved compared to the cinema release) and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug about to be released in the cinema, I’m in a Lord of the Rings sort of mood.
I’m rereading some of Tolkien’s The Silmarillion (another recommendation), watching the extras on the Hobbit DVDs in preparation.
In the first Hobbit film I couldn’t help but notice the many handknits the dwarves in particular wore. Dwarf women must be avid knitters!
It’s therefore time to do a Lord of the Rings inspired project.
My choice are the Varda Socks, but if socks, cables or Valar aren’t your thing, there’s plenty of other Tolkien knits out there to choose from.
Here’s just a few of my favourites.
Knits for Nerds
Tony Carr’s book Knits for Nerds: 30 Projects: Science Fiction, Comic Books, Fantasy includes a pattern for Hobbit Feet! What true Lord of the Rings fan can possibly resist that?
The book has some really promising looking patterns in it anyway as you can see on it’s Ravelry page. I don’t own it but its high on my wish list for the title alone.
I love knitting lace, and the airy elegant fabric it creates is supremely suited to the Elvish races in particular.
This lovely cowl is inspired by the Last Homely House west of the mountains. I love the use of yarn with subtle colour changes.
As stunning as the jewel it was inspired by, this shawl represents a formidable commitment. I hope to get around to knitting this some day.
This lady from Hungary has a whole bunch of very beautiful Lord of the Rings inspired socks patterns, and deserves a category of her own. Many of Tolkien’s characters, including Smaug and Treebeard, have their own pattern. Have purchased some of Clair Ellen designs myself, I can testify they are well written. She also provides personal support on her ravelry group.
Her designs can be found on Ravelry:
I recommend you have a little browse around.
I personally don’t do colour knitting. I mean, I wish I could but I inevitably end up with a big tangle if I try to use more than one skein of yarn at a time. If you’re not multiple skein challenged as I am however, there’s some really beautiful pattern charts to choose from.
I absolutely love the sweaters in the example. I want. Unfortunately aside from not doing colour knitting, I don’t do sweaters either. Maybe some day I’ll get brave enough.
The One Ring, the One Pattern to rule them all. Or at least the one pattern that seriously has me consider setting aside my aversion to knitting with more than one skein at a time as it is quite simply awesome. Seriously, check this one out.
The Rohirrim (the people of Rohan) are perhaps my favourite race from Tolkien’s Middle Earth. And Elmer is one of my favourite characters. This stunning tam features a a representation of his shield.
You know the little leaf shaped brooch Galadriel gives to each of the members of the Fellowship of the Ring? This clever design recreates that piece into a yarny craft involving knitting, crocheting and embroidery.
Need more ideas?
Is what you’re looking for not listed here, or do you want to have a chat with other knitting Lord of the Rings fans, take a look it the Lord of the Rings group on Ravelry. There’s a long list of Tolkien inspired patterns there that are regularly updated.
And please don’t be shy about leaving a comment below with your favourite Lord of the Rings knitting pattern!
UPDATE: I originally posted this in 2013. In 2014, in honour of the release of the third Hobbit film, I released my very own Lord of the Rings inspired knitting pattern, the Erebor Lace Shawl. This triangular shawl features geometric shapes, but has an organic quality too, just like the intricate carved stonework in the halls of the King under the Mountain. It’s a large shawl, to be draped over the shoulders on those chilly nights deep under ground. It’s quite the fashionable item amongst the more stylish Dwarf women!