10 November 2010

Round and round and round in the circle game

"And the seasons they go round and round
 And the painted ponies go up and down
 We're captive on the carousel of time
 We can't return we can only look
 Behind from where we came
 And go round and round and round
 In the circle game"  -- Joni Mitchell

Joni's right, in that, "We can't return we can only look behind from where we came " --  but as life often takes us in a circle, I re-visited a project I completed 25+ years ago when I was learning to knit. It was a fabulous project then. And guess what, even better the next time around. I learned more, it went faster, waaaay faster than in the '80s.

The Sweater Workshop Sampler by Jacqueline Fee

I knit this sampler to try and motivate members of the Snohomish Knitters Guild to adopt the concept of making a sampler, growing skills, and having a reference for future design efforts. In the process, I completely enjoyed revisiting all the folksy instructions by Jacqueline. The sampler took little more time than a hat.

A few modifications that I made:
1. I knit on two circular needles so I only needed to knit 64 stitches. It makes for a small sampler, but you never spend very long on any one section.
2. At the cast off sections at the top (Icord and lace cast offs), I followed instructions for the first 1/2, then for the last half, I knit through the back loop rather than front in the cast off. The difference is marked! Through the back loop for future when casting off in Icord or lace. The look is so much neater.

Size 6 US needle; Cascade 220 yarn; I purchased paper tags, wrote the instructions for each section and tied it to the section so I could refer to the sampler and know what I did (not illustrated in the above photos.)

Takeaway: I'm going to always have a circular sampler going to try new ideas out on. This was a fun project, highly recommended!


  1. I'm distracted by the absolutely gorgeous quilting in the background -sorry to be ignoring your project. Did you make the quilt? Wow, if you did. I agree with you about going in circles -or rather coming full circle. There ain't nothing like gaining some experience!

  2. Snohomish Shepherdess -- nope, did not make the quilt. It's a Woolrich lap quilt courtesy Target.

  3. ...and I can't see any photos. Is it just me?

  4. Hi Lynn,

    I've checked on multiple computers and I see the images on all of them. Can you check on a different computer?

  5. This looks great. I have the book and really must get around to knitting this sampler. Think I'll use your mods.

  6. Love your Sweater Workshop Sampler. I've had the book for years and decided this is my year to make a sweater so I finally pulled it off the shelf. What a wonderful learning experience this is!! This book belongs right up there with Elizabeth Zimmermann's and Barbara Walker's books. Have you made a sweater yet?

    Thanks for posting!


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