Please Pass the Garter Stitch
July 27, 2005
On the cusp of finishing Kiri, or one of the Kiris, I have a powerful yen for garter stitch. I also feel like it’s time to get moving toward finishing up the last loose ends of the Afghanalong for Afghans.
Carolyn is a reader in California we’ve never met. She sent in one of the very first squares for the Afghanalong. And she kept sending them. She sent so many that our first blanket was almost a 100% Carolyn blanket. Then she kept sending them.
At first, Carolyn was using up leftovers from all her other charity knitting (didja get that? “all her other charity knitting”? enough leftovers to make entire blankets out of?). Then she started sending these fantastic, bright, fine-gauge squares. She explained that her sister had passed onto her ‘a lot’ of 20-plus year old tapestry wool that she wasn’t ever going to use. The tapestry wool wasn’t as springy as knitting yarn (less twist, I think), but it knit up beautifully just the same.
I had no idea how much ‘a lot’ was, but the squares kept coming. To amuse herself, Carolyn gave them names, like ‘Oreo’ and ‘Ivy’ and ‘Lap Pool’. They were based, mostly and loosely, on the ‘log cabin’ theme. They were, in essence, brilliant color play.
So naturally I started to hoard them.
In the end, there were 19. Pictured above. I asked Carolyn if she would mind if we made one Superfantastic blanket out of them, and put it up on eBay to raise money for Afghans for Afghans. Carolyn, being Carolyn, said yes. Then she sent me:
A Righteous Pile of Tapestry Yarn.
So I’ve been a-thinkin’ and a-ponderin’ how to put the squares together. First I was going to just sew them together and log-cabin around them until the cows come home. But then I thought, gee, it’d be nice to share this work and maybe finish this thing in time for early autumn, when eBay shoppers start craving wool blankets. So I thought, if we did the strips Courthouse Steps style, then two people could work on the blanket simultaneously, one at each end.
Of course, these two people would have to be in the same room at the same time, to do that, and the strips would get long and get set aside in mid-strip, etc. So I wasn’t quite sure about that one, either.
Finally, the answer was in the Taro Blankie. Many hands could make light work, if we joined the squares with sashing and blocks, as in the Taro Blanket. (I have another Californian, Ann HB, to thank for showing me how to sash-and-block). This would have the added advantage of being the kind of project that many people could do, in the same room, while enjoying snacks and beverages. Each person could sash-and-block one square at a time. A nice, do-able evening’s project.
So here’s the plan: In September, after Labor Day, I’ll be having Open House every Monday evening. Anybody who’s in the neighborhood and wants to come over and knit a sash-and-block or two, and doesn’t already know where I live, email me. We’ll do it for a few weeks, until we run out of sashes, blocks and tapestry yarn. Bring a salty snack and/or a beverage to share.
Don’t worry, I’ll remind you when the time comes.
Now back to Kiri edging(s).