We are bursting with excitement to introduce the newest little book in our series: Mason-Dixon Knitting Field Guide No. 4: Log Cabin.
This time, it’s personal. Log cabin knitting has been a huge part of our lives. Before we learned this simple yet revolutionary technique, neither one of us would have dreamed of sitting down with a batch of colors of a yarn we love, casting on, and just knitting.
Log cabin never disappoints. In the many years that we’ve been knitting this way, log cabin always leads to something interesting and beautiful, for both the knitter and the lucky person who gets the finished piece.
Our kids have grown up dragging log cabin blankets around the house in the morning. Our sofas would look naked without short stacks of folded log cabin blankets, waiting for someone in need of a snuggle. We have knit log cabin rugs for the floor, and cushions for hard chairs. We have knit small log cabin blankets for babies, and even smaller ones for dogs and cats.
Log cabin is a technique that gives a knitter the ability to play with color and pattern, using only the most basic knitting skills. To get in on the fun, you just need to know these techniques:
Pick up stitches.
Log cabin is play. Log cabin is painting, but with yarn.
We thought a lot about how to teach log cabin knitting in the easiest, most beautiful way possible. This pocket-sized book is the result of that effort, and of the many years we’ve been knitting and loving this technique.
Here’s a peek at Field Guide No. 4: Log Cabin.
Project Number One
Log Cabin Cloths. These mini cabins are small, but mighty. Each one teaches a basic element of log cabin architecture. Make all six, and you will learn everything you need to know to knit almost any log cabin project, from the center patch to the edging. You’ll have six soft, pretty cloths to use as washcloths, dish rags, or the makings of a cushion or baby blanket.
The yarn: Rowan Handknit Cotton.
The Shop has two cheerful colorways.
Project Number Two
Ninepatch Blanket. We couldn’t do a log cabin book without including a quilt-inspired blanket—that’s how this adventure started. This project was inspired by a quilt we saw online that, at first glance, looked like a random patchwork, but in fact was an unconventional setting of the traditional ninepatch quilt block. Although each of the 14 blocks of the Ninepatch Blanket is constructed in exactly the same way (using skills learned making the Log Cabin Cloths), the blocks play with color placement and scale, so that no two are the same. You can place the colors exactly as shown in the pattern, or any way you like. That’s the fun of log cabin.
The yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca.
The Shop has kits in two colorways, warm and cool.
Project Number Three
Sommerfeld Shawl. When thinking about how we could show how far log cabin can go, we immediately thought of knitwear designer Ann Weaver. Much of Ann’s work takes inspiration from Josef Albers’s seminal color study paintings, and log cabin construction is one of her signatures. The Sommerfeld Shawl, directly inspired by stained-glass windows that Albers designed for a Bauhaus residence, takes log cabin to a transparent, glamorous and lacy place. It’s an intriguing puzzle to knit, and will fit into the most sophisticated wardrobe.
The yarn: Neighborhood Fiber Co. Loft.
We’ve been dreaming of this day for a while now, and we can’t wait to hunker down and knit log cabins with you all. Please take a look and join us. There’s big fun ahead.
Kay and Ann