If you’re looking for a fun stitch-cation this summer, look no further than STITCHES Midwest! Plan to visit the Chicagoland area the first weekend in August, and take advantage of all the fun to be had. The Stitches Market features 200 booths, with giveaways and daily door prizes! And at the Playground, it’s all about inspiration, exploration, and demonstration.
Most importantly, Gretchen will be there! She’s teaching four classes, read on for all the details.
*One of Gretchen’s classes, Brioche Basics, is already sold out! If you’re planning to attend, be sure to sign up soon, to secure your spot in her classes. Early-bird pricing ends April 24th, so get a jump on your registration today!
Fair Isle Basics
Part 1: Thursday 8/2 1:30-4:30
Part 2: Friday 8/3 9-12
Intermediate | $160
In Fair Isle Basics, you’ll make a worsted-weight hat as you learn the basics of stranded knitting. You’ll learn techniques for managing two active strands, reading charts in the round, managing float tension, and working decreasing charts. In addition, see the advantages & disadvantages of several types of crown-decrease charts. You’ll also learn strategies for keeping track of pattern repeats, catching mistakes, and noting your progress on your chart.
- 1 Ball Each of 2 Contrasting Colors of Smooth, Worsted-Weight Yarn
- US Size 7 (4.5mm) 16″ Circular Needles, US Size 8 (5mm) 16″ Circular AND DPNs.
With US Size 7 (4.5mm) 16″ Circular, cast on 80 stitches in main color (MC). Join to work in the round, and work knit 2, purl 2 rib for about 1 1/2″.
Students must be comfortable with knitting in the round, know how to cast on, knit, purl, and work basic decreases (k2tog & ssk). The main hat is worked on one circular; the crown is worked on DPNs, but students who are more comfortable with Magic Loop or 2 Circulars for working small circumferences are welcomed to do so.
Students will want to be ready to work the crown in the second session; most knitters will only need to work a few rounds between class sessions.
Friday 8/3 2-5
Intermediate | $85 || SOLD OUT!
*This class is currently sold out! Be sure to sign up for the others soon, if you’re planning to attend.
In Brioche Basics, you’ll learn the basics of 2-color Brioche as you make a beautiful cowl. Brioche is lofty and warm, with each side presenting a different dominant color. You’ll learn the Brioche knit & purl stitches, and how to work it in the round with 2 colors. This is the easiest way to understand how Brioche fabric is made!
- 1 ball each of 2 contrasting colors of worsted-weight yarn
- US Size 6 or 7 16″ circular needle – about 2 sizes smaller than you would typically use for your yarn choice
Must know how to cast on, knit, purl, & work in the round on a circular needle.
Cast Ons & Bind Offs Beyond the Basics
Saturday 8/4 2-5
Intermediate | $85
Most projects can be started with a good basic cast on, but some require special techniques. In this class you’ll learn a selection of the most frequently used cast ons & bind offs for special applications so you can be ready for (almost) anything! You’ll learn how to work the crochet provisional cast on, as well as how to pick up your provisional stitches and work in the other direction. You’ll also learn how to cast on and bind off tubular ribbing that appears seamless around the edge of your fabric. In addition, you’ll learn the German Twisted cast on for flexible ribbing at the beginning, and Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy bind off for stretchy ribbing at the end of your project.
- 1 Ball of smooth, light-colored worsted weight yarn
- Cotton scrap yarn in a contrasting color
- Knitting needles for working worsted weight yarn
- Crochet hook of the same gauge as the knitting needles
- Tapestry or darning needle
- Reading glasses (if you need them for detail work)
Sunday 8/5 9-12
Easy | $85
Learn to read color charts, manage bobbins, and work with multiple colors in one row! You will learn tips and tricks to make this wonderful color-work technique easier, and conquer the basics of intarsia at the same time.
- About 10 yards each of smooth worsted weight yarn in 2 main colors, and 5 yards of smooth worsted weight in 1 minor color. All 3 colors should contrast.
- Knitting needles for worsted weight yarn