Letters From The Editors
The scoop from the editors
I have no idea what temperature it is.
It's summer, but it feels like spring, except it's gonna be hot later this week. Or maybe not.
People, that is what knitting is all about. Have you ever been to Hawaii? Or Arizona? What the heck do they knit there? It's HOT! Well, I've been to those places, and the knitters there told me what we all really know: the reason you knit is so that you can cuddle up when you're in over air-conditioned offices or movie theatres. Or pare down to a light-as-air layer when you're outside and it's danged hot. Fine, most of us don't live in a place where we need huge and heavy sweaters year round. Thankfully, our designers have provided options for you in this issue, and tons more in our Library! Lots of light, less light and heavier layers. Knit for now when the weather is uncertain, or knit for the cold weather to come.
This issue is full of smaller projects you can knit for gifts (for birthdays? for the holiday season?) and lovely lighter things to wear right now. Which ones are your favorites?
This is is also full of tons of colorwork. If colorwork is new to you, intimidating, or you just want to see what an expert knitter does, you'll want to see Kate Atherley's video column this issue...all about colorwork!
Jillian writes below about being distracted by sister fiber crafts, and I'm having the same (fun) problem. I had many years where I was adding to my stash but not knitting much because Carpal Tunnel destroyed my hands. Now that I've had them both fixed, I have a stash that needs to be turned into THINGS. Rigid Heddle weaving has caught my attention, and except for not being able to measure my warp lengths properly, I'm having a blast. I have much too much laceweight yarn, and so once I get a superfine heddle in hand, I'll be golden. I have also found a really great accessory for my loom that I'll write about in the Deep Fall issue. Watch for that!
Do not worry: I'm still knitting, but now I also like to keep a warp on the loom for when I am in the mood to do something different.
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photo: Amy Singer
Paying attention to more than one thing at a time
Lately I’ve been very distracted by other crafts. I’ve bought some kits and new supplies for things that aren’t spinning or knitting.
It made me worried (that’s what I do) that maybe this was it for my spinning. Embroidery, weaving, and rug hooking all have been shiny and new to me, and spinning, while I still love it, has been pushed aside a little. My mojo was waning.
I’ve been stitching and buying new samplers and threads. After a couple of years of circling rug hooking, I bought my first kit. Don’t get me started on all the weaving thinking I’ve been doing, including researching looms and badgering every weaver I know with questions.
Do I have time really to do any of these new crafts? Nope. Is that going to stop me? Absolutely not. What about spinning, am I done?
Once I stepped over the worrying part and gave into the new crafts, a funny thing happened. As I’m stitching, reading about rug hooking, or sitting at my friend Lisa’s loom weaving twill, I start thinking about making yarn or thread to use.
A whole bunch of yarn making what-ifs came roaring into my brain:
While I stitched I thought about changing the amount of ply twist in threads for particular stitches to make then stand up or to spread.
While reading the directions for rug hooking I thought about using textured and art yarns as part of a piece.
While weaving a simple twill at a friend’s loom my mind swirled with needing to know how opposing twist directions would look and behave and so many questions about using color.
Letting something(s) new into my craft life sparked my spinning brain. I know how to make the yarns I want for knitting, now I want to dissect and spin yarns for other crafts. My spinning mojo just needed a kick in the creative pants!
My Knittyspin column this issue is all about the steps I learned use to match a yarn called for in a project, after I spent lots of time not spinning the right yarns.
There are two Knittyspin patterns in this issue. Mightiest Oak by Benjamin Krudwig is a tribute to Benjamin’s nephew born with a serious heart condition, a quick to knit hat out of chunky bubble crepe yarn. Prairie Park by Jess Gagnon is a sweater combining handspun and commercial yarn. It’s a fresh and creative take on an older Knitty pattern, Tenney Park from Deep Fall 2011 Knitty.
If you have fiber, spindles, books, or other spinny products or tools that you'd like us to review, you'll find information how how to get your products in to the hands of our reviewers here. I love to talk about it all.