Miles of cruise control knitting ahead?
You’ve split the sleeves on your sweater and now it’s time to settle in for a loooooong stretch of sweater body. You (likely) don’t have to pay much attention to your pattern during this phase. With a simple sweater like the Ramona cardigan or pullover, there’s just that side stitch accent that you have to keep track of, but otherwise you’re on cruise control!
Some people think of this as boring knitting, and others love a break from paying attention to each stitch or round/row. Need some ideas for how to occupy your attention?
Listen up — knitting podcasts.
Voices in Wool with Clara Parkes
You know we love Clara, a wool evangelist, knitwear designer, and phenomenal writer who’s from Maine — we’ve got her books in stock (and more are on the way)! Clara also hosts a podcast — and this is a favorite episode, From Broadway Divas to Shameless Escape Artists: Shepherds and Their Favorite Sheep.
“Spend any significant amount of time with sheep and you're bound to form friendships, attachments, connections.
In this episode, we hear stories about favorite sheep. Whether they're from a shepherd or a daughter of a shepherd, the stories run the gamut—from a little lamb who appeared off Broadway to an escape artist who likes to brag about it.”
Unraveling the History of Knitting with Bridget Kendall
Let’s get nerdy! Ever wondered about the history and evolution of the craft we love? In this episode of The Forum (BBC World Service), we get our knitting history lesson with some experts in global textile arts.
So what then are the real origins of knitting? How did it develop into so many different regional patterns, from the famous Fair Isle of Scotland to distinctive Nordic and South American variations?
Joining Bridget Kendall to discuss the global history of knitting are Professor Sandy Black of the University of the Arts London, Norwegian textile designer, Annemor Sundbo, and an expert on South American knitting, Cynthia LeCount Samaké.
KnitterViews with Vogue Knitting: “Arne and Carlos talk Space Invaders, innovation, and life in a Norwegian train station.”
In this episode of KnitterViews, we take a deep dive with Arne and Carlos, designers of knit and crochet patterns for Rowan, authors of multiple knitting books, and with their own line of Norwegian wool and sock yarn. They are a dynamic and very funny duo with their own podcast (Sit and Knit for a Bit), and in this more formal interview, you get a great introduction and a sense of who they are as a designing partnership.
Scandinavians Arne Nerjordet and Carlos Zachrison are highly regarded designers, textile artists, and authors. They are best known for their original, colorful, and visually striking designs as well as their craft books. Their work is highly influenced by their Scandinavian background and their everyday life in rural Norway.
Bingeworthy shows — with knitwear.
All Creatures Great and Small (PBS and PBS Passport)
You’ll swoon for this remake of the original TV show — because it’s entertaining viewing set in the Yorkshire countryside, but also for the knitwear. Beautiful Fair Isle vests, rugged knits meant to keep you warm on the farm, you’ll love the classic patterns from the 1940s, and you’ll definitely want to wear your overalls with a belt like Helen.
Historical-fantasy-romance with fantastic knits? Yes, please! The show is based on the series by Diana Gabaldon, and there was so much enthusiasm for the knitwear that Kate Atherly published a book of Outlander-inspired knits, Outlander Knitting!
If you have the streaming service Britbox, be sure to check out Shetland. Set against a stunning countryside in the Shetland Islands in Scotland, this detective series is based on the books by Ann Cleeves. You’ll catch some beautiful knitting along the way.
Cruise control knitting is a great time to take your knitting project to book club, for drinks or coffee with a friend, or to a sporting event. You can get some easy miles in on your sweater body, relax and chat, or take in the game, without worrying about shuffling your pattern papers or dropping stitch markers.
This is why a lot of us favor more than one knitting project at a time — since you need to choose the right project for the right type of knitting situation. Some projects need your focused attention, require good lighting, with your pattern and notions spread out on a table… and no one talking to you.
But what’s a knitter to do if you’re headed out for that coffee date with a friend? Could you actually *gasp* go without a project in your bag?! If that sounds like leaving your house naked, we can relate. Grab your cruise control knitting project and go.
Settle in for an easy ride.
Whether you’re knitting socially, or cuing up a show or podcast, take a moment to relax and appreciate those cruise control moments of knitting. Let us know your favorite podcasts or shows to knit with in the comments!