For the look of Relax in a worsted weight yarn, take a look at Worsted Boxy.

Quilting for Dummies

Dear Ann,
Good news! The new windows seem to be staying bolted into the walls, the dust is settling at a rate I can almost keep up with, the kids are in school, and I find myself with an unexpected free afternoon. So, obviously, I’m going to make a quilt.
HAHAHAHahahahaha. No really! I’m going to make a quilt! But first I’m going to write a tutorial, How To Make a Quilt By Kay Gardiner Who Has Never Made a Quilt.
Step 1: Get a copy of Denyse Schmidt Quilts, by Denyse Schmidt. (I mean, if you are going to make a quilt, make it a cool one, right? There are no cooler quilts than DS quilts.)
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Step 2: Choose your quilt. I chose, of all things, a log cabin: “What A Bunch of Squares”. It’s a Courthouse Steps layout, very simple. Denyse gives you templates in the back of the book, so that your log cabin strips will be wonky, not straight, and your centers will be different sizes. With the arrogance that comes with having absolutely no experience making quilts, I decided, WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ TEMPLATES. I mean, if I can’t make a strip wonky, what good am I? The saving grace is that you can square up each log cabin before you join them into the quilt top. That’s my theory.
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Step 3: Before you do anything else, KNIT THE QUILT. Do not, under any circumstances, skip this step. Sure, it’s a shortcut not to knit a whole quilt before starting the fabric version. But Grasshopper, it is only by going through your stash and knitting up yarns in a variety of shades of ‘Lake’, ‘Limeade’, and ‘Lemonade’, that you truly understand qu’est-ce que c’est le Lake, le Limeade, et le Lemonade. (Sometimes, I find, Lemonade is orange.) There are 9 more knitted squares in my basket. I had a blast mixing different cotton yarns. The center patch is a self-striping cotton by Katia called ‘Jamaica’–isn’t it the Lake-iest?
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Step 4: When you are one with the Lake, the Lemonade, and the Limeade, choose your fabrics. Cut. Sew. No problem.
I’ll let you know how it goes.
Love, Kay
P.S. Setting up my photo shoot on last night’s Magnetic Poetry surface, I found the following sentences composed by Carrie.
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I have no small amount of maternal pride at the one about the President. Hubby and I are doing strong work, raising the next generation of Upper West Siders.

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37 Comments

37 Comments

  1. yeah the president bugs me too.
    go carrie!

  2. Loyal reader but first-time commenter. Had to write to tell you that I was gobsmacked to find your book in the local (Dedham, MA) Costco! It was you along with FE’s Inspired Cable Knits and one other knitting book I can’t remember. Already had your book so I bought a copy for my mom (quilter/knitter who will love the log cabin thing). Love the book, love the blog, keep up the great work!
    Kathy

  3. Cheering you on from the sidelines! Methinks you are starting with a perfect attitude. Full speed ahead!

  4. Orange lemonade is orangina, n’est-ce pas?

  5. president bug me, too. That is one fine child you are raising!

  6. I’d be mortified if you could see what my magnetic words on my fridge spell out.
    No, really.

  7. Fine child. I need big magnetic letters to put that on my car!
    I think you should submit that quilting tip to a major quilt publication and start yet another career!

  8. Hooray for log cabin-ing! After reading your book, I just started a log cabin blanket and no kidding – all is right with the world when you’re log cabin-ing. I hope the same holds true for lob cabin quilting!
    And congrats on the windows :-)

  9. The more we are the same… the more we are different. No kidding, last night B and I were looking at the book and he says, “Do you think you could knit any quilt?” I said I thought so, but my feeling was I would have to make it with fabic first to see how it goes together! Guess it just depends on where you begin. Can’t wait to hear more of the tale.

  10. o dear. are you making a quil-ghan?
    beware the quil-ghan!
    :)

  11. President Bug Me too! What an incredibly insightful child ;) Can’t wait to see the quilt, I have been digging through my stash to find my “tweedy” yarns to make a log cabin for my living room – can’t wait to start – but first lots of baby socks and baby kimono’s for all of the “expecting” people in my life! Good knitting for softball tournaments – don’t ya think? I also wanted to tell you how incredibly happy I am that you liked the KAL button I created enough to put it on your site! :) Thanks! Off to watch, cheer on the team and KNIT :)

  12. Our magnetic poetry used to read ‘linger in stiff wet concrete’. No one person has ever taken responsibility for that, strangely. ‘Celebrate corduroy’ was another. But Carrie’s is just the best. I knew that girl was smart.
    Oh, and nice knitting, too. Have the teeny strips of fabric stuff that fray driven you mad yet? Do we get an o that has been f’d tomorrow?

  13. Missing you today! The ride home just won’t be the same. :)

  14. Neat project you’ve started there.
    And here’s some food for thought: there are a lot of us out here who like your book and your blog AND the president.

  15. I like the quote “Go have one, friend” which I think refers to the brewskis in the fridge, right?
    I’m confused about the quilt though, coz right in that first picture, there are 2 Block 3s, and they’re not the same, so why are they both called Block 3? Huh?

  16. OK, I totally missed that “knit one first” part when doing the king quilt. Perhaps that’s why I haven’t done one single thing on it since I last saw you? I needed to work through it in a knitted way first?

  17. Love the knit the quilt step! can’t wait to see this. perhaps that step should be obligatory in all projects: draw up blueprint, knit blueprint. plan table setting, knit table setting.

  18. We have the doggie magnetic words, very fun licking, wagging, sniffing…you ladies make my day.

  19. Knitting a quilt. What a concept!
    I finally got to order your book. I can’t wait to get it.
    :)

  20. Being the last one to the party time after time after time, I’m just now reading Eats, Shoots and Leaves and thinking of ways to punctuate Carrie’s lines.
    I had a monkey–go have one, friend! President Bugme, MY shark book is cool.

  21. forget the president stuff —- what happened to the monkey?

  22. Not only do the president bug me, but I do believe someone should tell the president “go have one friend”… thought I suppose Laura still counts. Kinda.
    I love New York kids!

  23. it’s just a natural progression….knit, quilt, knit, quilt…..by golly, miss molly…i love the fabby fabrics!

  24. Gosh, all this knitting….I love it! I so wish I could knit as well. I’ve tried and do ok, but I make a lot mistakes and I just can’t figure out how to fix them. I do a lot of corcheting and it seems so natural to me….is this just something I can’t do or am I going at it all wrong?
    April, in CA.

  25. just bought your book too. *love*it* and the blog and *president*bug*me* too. log cabin, yes; lacy curtains for the bathroom, yes; spiral rag rug, yes; those are my top projects for now :)

  26. Darlin, I love the knit quilt thing BUT I need you to listen to me. I’ve been sewing and quilting for 30 years. I look to you for knitting, now listen to me a minute about quilting strips. There’s a reason for the template. Do you understand bias cut fabric? The different levels of stretch and play? I hope so. They will grow while you sew. They will buckle and warp. Remember to adjust the pressure on the pressure foot to the mid range. A light foot will decrease the amount of walking. Keep posting. I love the new machine you got. It will be fun.

  27. Love the quilt in progress! When I read your book I was smiling to myself, of course, why not knit a quilt! Wonderful stash project as well. I’ll have to put on my “things to knit” list. Every growing.

  28. I’m loving the colorwork!

  29. Hmmm… I am wondering how you joined those stitches. I love the simplicity of DS’ quilts. They are so pretty in an Amish way vs a Laura Ashley way.

  30. I just wanted to tell y’all that today was (well, still is, but I’m sleepy and goin’ abed soon) my 32nd birthday and I got just what I wanted from my mom: a copy of your book! Awesome job, Mom! Awesome job, Kay and Ann! Awesome birthday, me!

  31. Way to go Carrie! Your president bugs me too.
    It’s going to be a wonderful blanket. Can’t wait to see it when it’s finished. Lovely colours.

  32. So, is the monkey and the President one and the same?

  33. Okay. KNIT THE QUILT FIRST. You are freakin’ hilarious. But also reasonable. I mean that’s a good way to be confident, eh?
    I’m scheduled to hit the fabric shop tonight before the sale ends for supplies for the first baby quilt. I’ll let you know how the cast on goes.

  34. I love Mason Dixon knitting and am almost finished with the Moderne Baby blanket. I have however discovered an error in the pattern for block 9. It calls for picking up 54 st. twice in intarsia to make side by side squares, however after finishing block 8, which is at the exact opposite end and has 126 stitches, 108 for the bottom (54,and 54) is just not right. If you count the garter ridges along the edge where you will place block 9 you will count 126. I have followed this pattern to a T, making each block exactly as suggested in the pattern and it has been perfect up to block 9. Just wanted to share my correction. Blessings, JanM

  35. In addition to my previous comment. Pick up 63 stitches in one color, intarsia in the next color with 63 stitches, for a total of 126. Have not decided yet if I am going to knit 63 garter rows to square off the blocks or 54. I may also make block 10, 36 rows instead of 18 because at this rate, it will be an abnormally long, but narrow blanket, and I will make accomodations for this. The yarn I am using is Caron Pounder, completely washable, and inexpensive. Blessings, JanM

  36. I like your blocks , your quilt and ALSO our presidnent,,,this isnt a political blog is it?
    pam

  37. Just back from a week of “vacation” unpacking into a new apartment–missed you guys–found the stash and brought the bathmat in progress with me in the car so it wouldn’t get lost–GO CARRIE.