Knitting a Steeked Farm Yarn Cardigan
February 19 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
An event every month that begins at 2:00 pm on day Third of the month, repeating until May 21, 2022
Four classes included: February 19, March 19, April 16, May 21 — from 2 to 4 pm
Join a 4-session “Steekalong” knitting class taught by Gayle Ravenscroft of Pacific Knitting Retreats, using our own Fibershed farm yarns. Students will knit a colorwork garment together and then cut it open (steek it) to create a cardigan. The class is limited to 12 students, and will take place at the beautiful Fibershed Learning Center at Black Mountain Ranch near Point Reyes Station.
Students should choose and purchase either Solbein or Stopover by Mary Jane Mucklestone. Solbein is designed as a steeked cardigan pattern, but Gayle will be explaining how to convert a pullover pattern into a cardigan for those who choose Stopover … a good skill for all participants to have! (NOTE: If the pattern choice is Stopover, a small amount of extra yarn will be required for the button bands.)
These patterns are QUICK knits (another good feature!) and produce long wearing and eye catchingly unique pieces. The techniques of these designs are particularly suited to our Fibershed yarns and while the project uses a number of skills, these patterns are friendly to those with basic knitting skills, and of course fun for experienced knitters looking to expand into trying new things with company and help.
Prior to the first session, students need to purchase their chosen pattern, select yarn and gather basic supplies as well as prepare their swatches. Our Fibershed producers’ yarns are all perfect for colorwork and steeking with our own California “Lopi Spun” types being particularly lovely. However, your choice might be handspun, or already in your stash. Worsted/Aran weights are ideal — the gauge should be your guide. Barinaga Ranch has beautiful yarns on hand for this class. Please contact Marcia directly by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and she will help you with yardage conversions and color choices. Or feel free to contact Gayle (email@example.com) with any questions and she will respond personally.
Session 1 (Feb 19, 2-4pm): Review swatches, discuss a plan for getting the project done successfully (measurements and how to pick a size you want), and review the skills involved. Both are yokes — Solbein is a top down and Stopover is a bottom up — and we will talk about that. We will also explore increases, decreases and simple stranded colorwork within a basic seamless structure. We will cast on together before leaving.
A note to those who raise sheep: Anyone who misses the first session due to lambing season can attend a virtual class with Gayle to catch up. Please email her to discuss (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Session 2 (Mar 19, 2-4pm): We gather to review works in progress and get help where needed. We will also try on garments in progress.
Session 3 (Apr 16, 2-4pm): Steeking! This is a technique that can sometimes challenge knitters, but it will be foolproof with our farm yarns!!! And we will review finishing techniques to complete our cardigans.
Session 4 (May 21, 2-4pm): Final Celebration — the wearing and photographing of the cardigans, with refreshments and lots of laughs!
Important note: Due to the ongoing pandemic, masks are required for all participants, and we will maintain appropriate physical distance during the classes.
Gayle Ravenscroft has been on a fiber adventure since she learned to knit from her grandmother when she was five years old. She is passionate about all aspects of the craft, as well as the cultivation of a mindfulness and appreciation for the history and labour represented by each piece of fabric a knitter creates. She is a teacher herself (on Zoom during the pandemic), and collaborates with other teachers, designers and yarn producers around the world to offer as many opportunities to grow as possible to the local knitting community through her tiny business, Pacific Knitting Retreats, LLC. Gayle is amazed by her Fibershed and truly grateful for opportunities to participate.
Photo of Gale Ravenscroft above by Paige Green. Sweater photos at top courtesy of Mary Jane Mucklestone — Solbein photos on top left by Carrie Hoge and Stopover photos on top right by Anna Markle; yarn photo at top courtesy of Gayle Ravenscroft.