My eldest son arrived last night from California! My kitties are finished! And today is the day for blogging about knitting! Yay!
Ta da! Here they are, posing for a picture by the mums on the front porch. I’m calling them Pumkin and Spyce. Guess you can figure out which is which! Spyce is happily taking a catnap, but Pumkin is feeling a little grumpy because she wants to nap, too.
The kitties started with a class I signed up for at The Yarn Asylum. We used a pattern from Ravelry called The Window Cat by Sara Elizabeth Kellner. Knitting the first kitty was so much fun that I had to do another one, but I used Sara’s The Parlor Cat pattern instead. She has so many cute stuffed animal patterns, including a squirrel that would be perfect sitting amongst some pumpkins, that I wish I had time to knit more of them.
I used three colors of Perfection Worsted by Kraemer Yarns. I began with two: the Chirp (orange) and Fluff (white) colorways, but one of the other ladies in the class was using Evening Song (purple) and it looked so pretty that I had to add it. I think it makes a nice fall palette!
The Parlor Cat pattern requires short rows. Knitting that section was like knitting the heel of a giant sock. I think the stripes kind of made it feel that way, too.
I love how they turned out!
My Next Project: The Sweater Sampler
I was moseying around the yarn store after one of the cat classes (yes, mosey is a word!) when I noticed these odd looking knitted things hanging near the yarn. They kind of looked like sleeves, but they weren’t, nor were they cowls. But they were tubularly constructed with a couple of different kinds of knitting, and each one also had a pocket. Curious, I asked the shop owner what they were.
It turned out that these were samples she had knitted for a workshop called The Sweater Sampler. She’s going to have the workshop again in January, but in the meantime she recommended buying the book that the workshop was based upon. It’s written by Jackie Fee, and after finishing the workshop the objective is to be able to pick up any yarn and use any size of needles and make a sweater. The workshop teaches all kinds of sweater making techniques like common rib stitches, stripes in ribbing, how to make cardigan plackets and knitted belts, how to do two color knitting, and (of course) afterthought pockets. And it’s all knitted into a sampler that looks like a sleeve from a Dr. Seuss sweater.
I wish I asked to take a picture of hers, but you can kind of see what it looks like in the inset of the book cover.
I was intrigued, and when I got home I found an older version of the book for sale on Etsy. There’s a Ravelry group, too. I think I already know how to do most of the things in the book, but there’s always room for improvement and I certainly can use the practice. I’d love to make a sweater by finding the perfect yarn first instead of starting with a pattern and trying to find yarn that will work. Is that wistful thinking or is it really possible?
The book arrived in a week. When I eagerly poured through it I was surprised to find a bunch of photocopied knitting articles tucked inside.
Apparently the book was once in the library of a yarn store, and someone had inserted the additional tips and patterns for extra help. It was a pretty neat bonus!
Of course I can’t wait until January to do one of these samplers. I bought some inexpensive acrylic yarn and I’m casting on today, if only just a little bit, after I’ve made a home-cooked meal for my son.
A Note About Unraveled Wednesday
Some time last spring while I was off traipsing around the U.S. looking for a new home, Ginny at small things decided to put Yarn Along on hiatus. Thankfully, another of my favorite bloggers, Kat from AsKatKnits took up the banner and is now hosting Unraveled Wednesday. In requiem to the dedicated Yarn Alongers she wrote
…So, what do you do when reading and knitting are…a major theme for your blog (and, quite frankly, your life?)…
I think this is something we all do rather well – in both knitting and reading. And, while unraveling a book might be less painless than unraveling your knitting – it is necessary occasionally.
I hope you will join me on Wednesdays and unravel the stories you are reading and share your crafting inspiration – knitting, crochet, spinning, sewing, quilting, weaving, drawing, etc.
I can’t begin to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed the posts that these ladies (and others who link up through this theme) published through Yarn Along and now through Unraveled Wednesday. And how happy I am that Kat is now leading the charge.
Personally, I don’t think I’m alone in preferring genuinely written posts about the ups and downs of ordinary people in everyday life instead of sensationalized news articles intended for profit. It’s lovely to sit with a cup of coffee and see what the other ladies are working on, and equally, to share my work with them.
Please take a few minutes to visit them. You can find this week’s Unraveled Wednesday link here.
And feel free to leave a comment! What are you working on this week?
P.s. I just finished reading “Wish You Were Here” by Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie Brown. I definitely have cats on the brain this month!