Sunday, September 27, 2009

KDO 2009

Another year of Knitters’ Day Out is complete!

Kris and I began the weekend with a Knitters’ NIGHT Out.  We ate at IMG_4467Cedars Restaurant in Camp Hill and enjoyed a lovely array of mezza dishes.  Unfortunately, I did not photograph them.  Trust me, they were both beautiful and delicious.  Then we headed to KDO to register and visit the marketplace.  At registration, we learned that everyone won a door prize this year.  I got lucky and won this set of plastic needles in sizes 8-10.5.  These will be perfect for teaching kids.  I’ve already lost most of my straight Brittany needles to beginner knitters who never return them.  This is a very useful door prize for me!

Kris had never seen a sock knitting machine before.  This one as at the Knitters Dream booth.  Fascinating!IMG_4454 I ended up picking up a few small things at the market:

- a cute little book from Regia called Flusi and the Sock Yarn (it goes with their new line of sock yarns for kids, which I resisted as I have plenty of stash) – cute illustrations that might make kids ask you to knit socks for them!IMG_4471 IMG_4472- a sock pattern that I picked up at The Mannings booth (they had two different samples knitted up that were quite striking, and I thought this would be a great way to knit down some of my handpainted sock yarn):IMG_4473- some 2-ply yarn from Icelandic sheep from Cedarland Farm in Delta, PA (south of Lancaster near the Maryland line, about 60 miles east of Gettysburg).  This is 100% Icelandic wool in its natural color, but I think it will be plenty strong for socks:IMG_4469 On Saturday morning, I took Merike Saarniit’s Patent Stitches class.  Patent stitches are a group of Estonian stitches that use a lot of yarn (the patent stitch is composed of a pair of loops over the needle) and which create a really squishy fabric.  Often, garments made from patent stitching were fulled, which made them warmer (Estonia is a very cold place).  The patent stitching creates a more flexible fulled fabric than felted stockinette.

Here are some of the sample garments Merike brought to show.  See the hat knit in orange and blue/purple?  merike collageI loved that stitch (the Two Color Full Patent) so much that I bought some Malabrigo Worsted to try making a hat using it.  I offered to knit Ed a hat when I was in Portland last month, and he requested “green.”  I think these two greens together will still be neutral enough to suit his taste.IMG_4474 Here is the patent stitch sampler we made in class:patent stitches labelled I was much more enamored of patent stitches than I expected to be.  They are enticingly squishy, and many of them require no purling, even though they look like ribbing.  The Pearl Patent, for example, creates a dimensional nubbly pattern that gives me the same visual and tactile satisfaction as moss or seed stitch, but it would knit up soooooo much more quickly because it’s all knitting and is knit over fewer stitches.  I plan to knit the hat mentioned above as well as a pair of socks that uses patent stitches on the leg.  Merike recommended reducing the number of stitches considerably, as this fabric is very stretchy.

After a lovely lunch spent catching up with Kris, Julie, and Alison (Julie’s sister, who usually joins her for this event), I hopped off to my afternoon class on ribbing.  We created the following sampler of different rib stitches:Rib Sample Labelled This session served to remind me that one should always question the basic 1x1 or 2x2 rib when it is called for in a pattern.  Why go plain if you can go fancy?

Another fun year! 


  1. It looks like you had an awesome KDO 2009. How fun! I like the kids book. Very cool about ribbing sampler.

    Oh, how I long to have my life absorbed by knitting! Kristina

  2. I definitely need to go to the patent stitch class next year...any way to avoid purling! I've been talking all day about my fabulous "seam" class. I never knew I could be awed by math and structural engineering -- so, so cool!

    The meals (Friday's dinner and Saturday's lunch) were also awesome!

  3. I'm thinking maybe my class in Portland with Merike touched on patent stitches? I'll have to check my handouts.

    Yummy food, free needles, learning fun techniques and getting Icelandic yarn. What could be better?