Monday, May 17, 2010

A wonderful knitting weekend

What a wonderful weekend! I arose early Saturday morning and hiked (read: drove) three-plus hours to Ligonier, PA, to attend the venerable Kathy Zimmerman's Cable Sampler Class. Although I spent more than seven hours driving back and forth, the experience warranted every single moment in the car.

Kathy's Kreations, located just off the village square in this quaint southwestern Pennsylvania town, is a rare gem of a knitting shop, filled to the brim with yarn, knitted garments, more needles than you can count, and a variety of knitting gadgets you've never even heard of. For example, do you own highlighter tape? I do, thanks to Kathy. This removable tape lets you easily keep track of your place in a pattern. Brilliant.

In this class, Kathy taught basic cabling techniques using  Bev Galeskas' Cable Sampler Scarf, a free pattern hightlighted in Debbie Macomber's novel "Summer on Blossom Street." The design features seven different cable squares embedded in a field of garter stitch.

As a class, we worked on the first square; by myself, I knocked out the second square last evening. This fun project makes me confident that I'll be able to knit my beloved boyfriend his very own John's Sweater, a cable pullover designed by Norah Gaughan.

But the most exciting news is that Kathy Zimmerman has agreed to teach a Knit to Fit class on July 10. When I told her about my (our!) woes to make a garment that actually fits, as well as the difficulties inherent in upsizing patterns, she offered this class. The homework: pick out a pattern or two, knit some swatches, and then come to the class where she'll help us create patterns designed just for our unique figures. How cool is that!? Kathy is the consummate pro; to get this education from the source is a priceless opportunity. Come join us if you can! I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to it. I definitely want to make one of Kathy's classic cable patterns. Here are two of my favorites, both available in recent Knitter's Magazines.

On my way home, I stopped at the temporary memorial for Flight 93, the so-called third plane that crashed on September 11 in Shanksville, PA. Although there isn't much there as yet, the remote, somber spot made me realize how much gratitude and respect we owe to the brave men and women who brought down that plane. As a DC native, this is particularly haunting for me. September 11, the worst public disaster in my lifetime, could have been much worse if those hijackers had flown that jet into the Capitol Building. Thank God those heroes made sure they didn't.

But even this sad little side trip couldn't bring down my day. I had a wonderful trip and I greatly look forward to my next trip to visit Kathy Zimmerman in July.


  1. You had a grande time!

    I like cabled scarves, but they look funny when the wind blows and flips them to the wrong side. I have found some reversible cable scarves on the internet, though.

    Your sampler is coming along nicely..I have ALWAYS wanted to make the St Brigid, but it is way too advanced for me.And has sewing! That has to be conquered before I attempt anything else, because it is the hindrance that gets me each and every time..

    Julie likes cables now!!!!! YAY!

    The rose colored sweater stitch pattern also looks a bit similar to the one you want to knit for Tom! Lattice and cables, I guess you'd call it.

    Yep! Sounds like you had a real good time this weekend!

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  3. I thought of you this weekend when I was at the class, oh Queen of Cables!

    OMG, that St. Brigid is just beautiful. There are several plus-size women modeling it on Ravelry and they look great. Might have to put that one in my queue... at the back of the line because I have so many other things to make right now.

  4. I picked up some Highlighter tape in the local stationery store. So much better than many sticky notes..just use 1 for an odd note or 2.
    At first I thought the print would come up when removed and it was suitable for see through sleeves only..WRONG! Works like a charm! Thanks for sharing this tip on the blog Julie!