Leg warmers were originally used by dancers to keep their muscles warm. Today, it is fashionable for anyone to wear them. Knitting your own leg warmers has some advantages. It can save money, and they can be made in any color or pattern that you like. Knitting leg warmers need not be a frustrating experience. Using two common stitches -- knit and purl -- and medium-sized straight knitting needles, even children and beginning knitters can make their own leg warmers.
Things You'll Need
Worsted-weight yarn, any color
Set of U.S. size 8 straight knitting needles
Set of U.S. size 9 straight knitting needles
Cast 30 stitches onto the size-8 knitting needles.
Knit one stitch, purl one stitch until you have worked your piece for 3 inches from the knitting needle.
Switch to size-9 knitting needles and knit in stockinette stitch -- knit one whole row, purl one whole row repeatedly -- until your leg warmer is the desired length, minus 3 inches. The side that shows the knit stitch will be the outside of the leg warmer, or right side.
The last 3 inches, switch back to the size 8 knitting needles, return to the knit 1 stitch, purl 1 stitch and repeat the pattern.
Bind off loosely after completing 3 inches of this pattern.
Fold the leg warmer lengthwise with the knitted side on the inside. Sew together using the same color yarn and embroidery needle. Turn the leg warmer right side out.
Repeat Steps 1 through 6 for the second leg warmer.
To make your seams less bulky, slip the first and last stitch of each knitted row. Using size-8 needles and most worsted-weight yarns, you should get a gauge of 18 stitches by 24 rows to equal a 4-by-4-inch square. Use your gauge to adjust the pattern to different sizes. For example, if your gauge is 16 stitches by 24 rows for the 4-by-4-inch square and your leg is 32 inches long, cast on 128 stitches (16 stitches in 4 inches = 4 stitches per inch. 32 inches times 4 stitches per inches = 128 stitches).
Gauge varies for each knitter. Always check your gauge before starting a project.