This Saturday, January 23rd, PBS's Create TV station is holding a Knit and Crochet Now Marathon. Check your local channels for listings. Create TV is one of PBS's digital signals - on our WGBY it is 57-004. I might not cable or satellite or high speed internet service but I get PBS's Create TV! How amazing is that? For those of you who don't know, I am a "knitting expert" on this PBS t.v. show. I go to Detroit once in a while to tape segments. It's been a fun experience and I am over my television appearance jitters for sure.
Julia is threatening to watch her mom on t.v. all day long. I will stay far away from the t.v. when I'm on - I hate to watch myself on t.v! I'm glad I have been given the opportunity, don't get me wrong. Here's the link to the new Knit and Crochet Now website. There are awesome free patterns on it, videos, and you can sign up for the weekly newsletter. The new season is just beginning (we taped it in October). I don't think they will be showing the new season but they will have all the past seasons on this "marathon." Here's the line-up of the shows and the times they will be broadcast. What a way to spend a Saturday - knitting and watching t.v. It all begins at 6:00 a.m. EST. Check it out here! But don't forget to go outside and take a walk!
In other knitting news, I'd like to introduce you to a new, very easy, but extremely colorful "Kristin Nicholas" creation modeled by our own "Julia." Available in my Shop as a instant PDF download, Julia named this sweater and hat set her "Cozy Cap and Pullover." This sweater has been in her rotation of sweaters this winter and it is surely her favorite. I think she may be the only child at her elementary school who wears wool and animal protein blends! We'll see how long this wool-love lasts! She is already showing a partiality to cashmere. I hope she finds a good job! When I look at these photos from ten months ago, I can't believe how much she has changed in looks. Here she looks like a child and now, she is changing so quickly it is scary. It's a good thing I took these photos when I did!
The incredibly beautiful photo I took of Julia in March of 2009 served as our Christmas card this year (see below). What a moody shot. I didn't know what I was catching that day because it was late and dark and the sun was low. You can see the crocheted flowers on the yoke of the sweater which dresses it up a bit. I added French knots to the flowers to make them more realistic. I've got 2 videos on my sidebar I made for you - one for the simple crochet flowers and the other for how to make a French knot.
Let me tell you a little about the day we took these photos - I know you all will get a kick out of it. It was late winter and the weather was finally getting a little warm. Spring was in the air and sugaring was finished. I had finally finished this sweater. In the back of my mind, I was planning to do a bunch of new patterns that would be available on my website, not in my books. The grass was threatening to turn green. Green grass was not the look I was going for so I knit in great urgency. I crocheted and embroidered the flowers, sewed them on and hoped for an overcast day. As luck would have it, no sun was out and the grass only had an inkling of green to it. I picked Julia up from school and told her she had work to do. I promised her $10. Off we went in search of a place on our hill that wouldn't look too springy.
Poor kid, I make her work. I'm not the best photographer and I need to try a lot of variations to get the image I want. The first place we went was our neighbor's field where our sheep often graze. There I got this photo and the Christmas Card. I love the colors, the cloudy sky and Julia's cold look.
In this photo, Julia was dancing. Aren't those red boots the cutest? They were inexpensive rubber boots I picked up at the grain store. Sadly, they no longer fit here. Thank goodness the sweater still does.
Next, we hopped in the truck and moved on to a woodland scene with leaves that were already laying on the forest floor for at least five months. It was still pretty and I loved how the colors of the sweater popped out from the brown and gray background.
I hope you like this new pattern. The yarn and sizing specifics (it is sized for toddlers to children, no adult sizing) can be found on my website here. Here's the thing - even if you are a beginner, you can knit this sweater! It is knit entirely in garter stitch (knit all rows). The stripes are made by alternating colors every second row - it's easy - trust me. The yoke is made all in one color. The instructions are given for knitting the neckline in the round so some purling is involved there. But, if you knit the neckline with one shoulder seam open, you would be able to work the garter stitch back and forth and then sew the seam closed. You can order the pattern here on my shop page.
I think that the simple striping of garter stitch looks so much harder than it is. If you want the stripes to stand out and look stripey, make sure you choose colors that contrast greatly. If you want a more subtle stripe, then chose colors that aren't as dark and light. I used my Julia Yarn in Magenta and Espresso for the base stripes and Blue Thyme for the yoke. There is no end to the variations you could make to this simple striped sweater and cap.
Here's the question for the weekend. This is always something that fascinates me when I go around teaching or run into knitters on the street. So many times they say to me "I only knit. I don't know how to purl." It always blows my mind that there are many people afraid of the purl stitch.
So, do you only knit? Or do you know how to purl too? Do you like to purl or do you disdain it?
The Farmer will be back next week with more answers to your questions. And of course I will have more lamb photos. See you on the tellie (telly?).