Learn how to crawl: the New York City Yarn CrawlΒ is on through Sunday, September 25.

The World According to the Yarnery

Dear Kay,
I hate to say it, and I’m a little bitter because they did it without the aid of two-story-tall hair, but I think we’ve been out-YouTubed.
On Sunday, The Yarnery Family Singers just about blew everybody’s handknit socks off at the knitting party in St. Paul. For those of you who somehow didn’t manage to get to Minnesota (where were ya and we missed ya!), drink it in . . .

Bravo to them all: Eric, Scott, Jess, and the wicked lyricist Angie, in the blue shirt, for finally fixing up Rodgers and Hammerstein the way we knitters want to hear it.
The whole event was crazy, with the door prizes and my balky computer that mysteriously started to work and a big room full of people I wanted to spend the day with. Maura, Julie, Shelley, Maureen, and the whole group pulled off an afternoon that we will always remember. I’m told that Maura has taught classes in hosting knitting events; anybody who can get hundreds of knitters to show up on a beautiful Sunday afternoon ought to be teaching graduate-level courses!
We were moving at warp speed–a day trip from Nashville to St. Paul on the way to Portland, Oregon?–but time slowed down in an amazing way during our visit to this extraordinary place. We’ll be back, really. Thank you, o Yarnery, for a mind-blowingly fun day. “Welcome to our local yaaaarn shop” is still stuck in my head . . .
Surprise Guest
The winner of our Teeny Project Runway contest made an appearance:
Jill the Monkey! The lanky seductress who appears on the last page of our new book. Lemme tell you, Jill is absolutely gorgeous in person, and she’s just as down-home and real as you’d hope her to be. NOT a diva. And Rhonda Tesch, the designer who put Jill in that fibery, slinky-yet-Minnesota-winter-ready Oscar gown, was so great to bring her along. So funny to look down and see the monkey of my dreams peeking up out of Rhonda’s tote bag.
Regional Moment of the Day
Seeing “Al Franken for Senate” signs all over the place.
Delicious Moment of the Day
Lunch at Cafe Latte next door to the Yarnery with Yarneryist Julie. It’s a cafeteria, but imagine a cafeteria that serves airy lemon shrimp pasta and roasted vegetables and salads so beautiful even I wanted to have some. Where was the mystery meat???
Thing I Learned about Kay That I Didn’t Know Until Now
Kay played the cello in high school.
Next stop: Portland, Oregon! We haven’t missed a flight yet! Probably just jinxed THAT!




  1. hoping the jinx doesn’t take so I can see you in NYC on Thursday. Travel safely.

  2. It was great fun to meet the Mason Dixon girls, as well as perform for you. Best of luck on your whirlwind tour.
    (Note to Keith at the event: I lost your email address and was going to include you on the Yarnery’s Men’s Knit Night email list. If you see this, send me a note!)

  3. you are just too much. I hope it continues and continues for a long time. The Rogers and Ham.song was hilarious. What gigs you do get. Love, Dad

  4. Cafe Latte! I think that was was introduced to pate…hooked for life! I used to go there all the time when I was in high school. I graduated in 1988. OY! It’s been a long time. I now live in Chicago and I had fun meeting Ann (so sorry that I didn’t get to meet Kay–maybe I will bump into you the next time I visit my brother and sil in the upper west side!). Anyhoo, thanks for sharing the singing…wish I could have been there!

  5. Fawning over Rhonda’s sweater…can we get details?
    (And am working up the nerve to try Liberty or the Dotty Blankie…LOVE THEM!)

  6. Bravo! Brava!

  7. The singing was so beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes, but I was also laughing. I wish I could have been there. Thanks for sharing your day with the rest of us.

  8. My friend and I traveled from Des Moines, Iowa to see you guys and the entire trip was wonderful. The musical introduction was absolutely unexpected and great. I really enjoyed our trip. Best of luck on your travels. I wonder how anyone can top the Yarnery singing group!

  9. And we really appreciated the Al Franken songs and Cafe Latte too.

  10. And we really appreciated the Al Franken signs and Cafe Latte too.

  11. Jill the Monkey!!!!!!!
    (I’m waiting for the youtube files to load, but had to express my delight at the surprise celebrity appearance right away πŸ™‚

  12. Fabulous! Wish I could’ve seen it in person!

  13. Thanks for coming to Saint Paul ladies!
    I had a super fun time singing for y’all and I am glad that you had fun too.
    I agree with you about Maura, she is an organizing wonder.

  14. Thanks for coming to Saint Paul ladies!
    I had a super fun time singing for y’all and I am glad that you had fun too.
    I agree with you about Maura, she is an organizing wonder.

  15. Thanks for coming to Saint Paul ladies!
    I had a super fun time singing for y’all and I am glad that you had fun too.
    I agree with you about Maura, she is an organizing wonder.

  16. Sorry about the multiple comments, your website is so fast that I didn’t think it went through.
    Feel free to delete as necessary.

  17. Kay, if you had asked me to guess what instrument you played as I kid, I SO would have guessed cello.

  18. Oh, we laughed so hard, at the songs and at your wit. Thank you, ladies, for squeezing this stop in. (And, yes, the Yarnery is awesome for holding events, and the store is awesome, too!)

  19. Oh my gosh – that was hilarious! Kudos to the Yarnery Family Singers. I worked on a production of Oklahoma many years ago, and I don’t remember it being *nearly* this funny. What a nice tribute! πŸ™‚

  20. There’s a whole lotta love out there. Hope you’re slurping it up. Marvelous.

  21. Wow. If it weren’t so far from Nashville and so crazy cold I think we would all do a road trip to St. Paul. What a fun event. What great songs. What great singers. Thanks for sharing the fun with the rest of us.

  22. I love it when funny writers are even more entertaining in person. Thanks for a great afternoon, ladies! (And if you can talk The Powers That Be into coming back our way, I’m sure there’ll be more songs on your next book tour!)
    Safe travels!

  23. How fun!

  24. See! I told you the Yarnery was the best LYS EVAR!!! Wish I could’ve been there, but I don’t live in St. Paul anymore. (I’m on the other side of Wisconsin, now.) So glad you had a good time. It was fun to read (and hear) about it.

  25. What fun. The Yarnery Quartet is giving Merle and The Girls some competition in the talent and cleverness departments!
    In the words of Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies to you. Hope you enjoy the remainder of your tour.

  26. goodness.
    …we’re only saying
    you’re doing fine,
    ann and kay
    ann and kay

  27. Quite hilarious. I’ve got an ear worm now: I’m just a girl on Ravelry!

  28. Just when I thought NOTHING could be as funny as “Pardon Me, I Didn’t KnitThat for You”, comes this. Great voices and I especially appreciate how the styling of the piano mimics that of the original. GREAT WORK, Yarnery! I’m gonna send this to my mom too!

  29. Loved the singing, but sure hope they get that piano tuned soon.
    And which one of your dads wrote the lovely comment above? What I’d do for a chance to read “Love, Dad” again… (Mine’s been gone 12 years. It still sucks.)

  30. p.s. to Michelle:
    The event was held at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul (read: no “music department” or “piano technician”). We were just glad they had one! But yes – scary church-basement sounds. Scott had to do some creative octave displacement to avoid the truly heinous notes. He rocks the casbah.

  31. fun fun fun
    jill looks smashing

  32. Rhonda’s sweater? Because we love it? Rhonda? Please?
    Also, please don’t tell me it’s the new Clapotis or something and everyone already knows and has already knit it. Just because I’m far enough out of the loop already. Sheesh.

  33. This Okie who now resides in New Jersey (Met a blue eyed Jersey boy in college and “couldn’t say no” much to the dismay of my Boomer Sooner family!) is lol over the clever knitterly lyrics. As a Drama teacher who grew up in Oklahoma you can imagine how many times I’ve been in, directed, and seen this beloved musical. Btw, my blue eyed Jersey boy surprised me with your book a couple of weeks ago. Love it, Love it, LOVE IT! Already finished one of those new hangy dish towel things.

  34. I laughed so hard I cried. There should be an albumn!

  35. Wow! That was great! Thanks for sharing from your tour.

  36. Between your song and the Yarnery, I laughed harder than I have in a long time! Hope there’s a CD in the future.

  37. Ok, that was fabulous! Loved the singers, and especially the Ravelry lyrics.

  38. Thanks for stopping at Minnesota! A fun time was had by all. Can’t wait to dive into the patterns of the new book, if I ever finish the endless log cabin. If you want to see some candid shots of y’all, check out my blog.

  39. What can I say, Minnesotans don’t need much prompting to bust out a song. We are a singing bunch of folks. Glad you had a great visit!

  40. Oh my gosh, I wish I could say that I knit my own sweater! How embarassing, in front of y’all.
    (I’ve never even knit a sweater for my self yet.)
    *whew*, I feel like I just was at knitters anonymous,
    hi my name is Rhonda and I have not knit my own sweater. It’s so freeing.
    I bought it at this super cute store here in Waconia called Clearwater Clothing, it has a Carolyn Taylor tag. So sorry, no pattern to share…
    It was such a thrill to meet Ann and Kay, and hear their stories in person, and to be surrounded by all those knitters. What a great day, thank you for coming to Minnesota!!!!! And thanks Yarnery, you rock… literally.

  41. Any chance Scott could be persuaded to appear in Franklin’s next calendar? πŸ˜‰

  42. To Rhonda…thanks for checking in and making your ‘big confession’. You’re among friends so don’t be embarrassed!
    Wonder if one of us will get inspired enough to create something inspired by your sweater? Wouldn’t that be great!


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