Top Ten Christmas Movie Guide with Knitting Projects

November 25, 2013

Even though it's still November, the Christmas movies are now playing on your TV, and it's great, right?  I love Christmas movies!  Remember my Top 10 Movies for Knitters?  I'm adding to it a Must Watch Christmas Movies List complete with appropriate projects to knit while viewing.  Let's begin, in no particular order!

1.  White Christmas.  I know, you've probably seen it ____ times, (multiply your age times 2.5), but maybe you'll be watching it again this year just to see the great gowns Rosemary Clooney and Vera Allen are wearing and you'll be asking yourself, "When exactly is the last time I wore a gown?"  Love that spectacular last scene with the Santa costumes and the tree with the doors opening and it's snowing and they're singing White Christmas.  We really can't top that kind of beauty, but we can knit a gossamer lace shawl for the leading ladies to slip over their shoulders.  Temptress by Boo Knits.

Knit in Licktfaden Tussah Silk Lace with beads translates to unequaled elegance.

2.  The Polar Express is a visually beautiful movie and has an important lesson, to remember what it feels like when you believe.  A feel good movie.  However, the kids look so chilly going to the north pole dressed only in their pj's and just a few remembered to bring their robes.  Brrr, I shiver just thinking about it.  Let's knit up a little something warm for these kiddies.  I like the Waiting for Winter Mittens very much!

Waiting for Winter by Susan B. Anderson.  These look like they are knit in Noro.

3.  The Bishop's Wife.  Why don't they make movies like this anymore?  Cary Grant, Loretta Young, David Niven, oh my.  An angel in the form of Cary Grant descends to earth to help a young family.  While viewing this I think we should knit my Christmas Angels! Aw, I'm really proud of them and think they turned out pretty cute.

Christmas Angels, free pattern download, knit with Rowan Angora Haze.

4.  How The Grinch Stole Christmas, the one with Jim Carrey.  The casting for this movie was so great.  What an adorable little Cindi Lou Who and with Jim Carrey as the Grinch, well, there could be no other!  But perhaps my favorite character is the fashionable Martha May Whovier.  As in Bouvier.  For the edgy Martha May we absolutely have to pick something from the new Rowan Studio 33.  Almost any design will do but let's go for maximum flash and knit the cape with beads, Pop by Amanda Crawford.  You know you want this. (As of now, the book is still shipping to your lys and will be available within a week.  Here is my preview of it.)

Pop, knit with Rowan Kidsilk Haze.

5.  The Christmas Story.   Guys like this movie, and girls do too, but guys really really like this movie as it really strikes a familiar cord.  The Christmas Story takes place in the mid west in the 40s.  The whole movie revolves around Ralphie who wants a BB gun for Christmas.  It's a hard sell, because we all know that the answer can only be "No, you'll shoot your eye out."  Poor Ralphie.  This is a classic vest for Ralphie and this charming little fellow even looks a little bit like him.  I like your smile!  Epsilon by Katya Frankel.

Knit in Rowan Purelife Organic DK Wool.

6.  The Miracle on 34th Street, both versions are worthy of repeated watching.  I love little Natalie Wood in the 1947 version.  Little side note, she went to high school with my husband's cousin who said she was shy and sweet and very pretty.  The 1994 version with Mara Wilson is my favorite.  Remember I told you my mom was a children's talent agent?  Mara was her client and mother said she was the sweetest thing.  All the people in this movie, including the extras, are terrifically handsome, wear gorgeous clothes and live in beautiful homes.  Christmas time is when I want a large dose of fantasy and this movie hits the spot.  We'll be knitting a beautiful classic for Mara; Charlotte from the Little Star Collection knit in Rowan Angora Haze.  A very special sweater on a very pretty little girl.  I'm gathering up the yarn to knit this.  I have no one in mind to give it to when it's done, I just love it so much I feel compelled to make it!  The Rowan sample was hanging in my lys, oh my, it's so very beautiful!

Charlotte, sized ages 3 to 10 years, by Marie Wallin.

7.  It's A Wonderful Life.  I can't say enough about this terrific movie.  My tradition is to bring a small TV (now my laptop) into the living room and watch this movie while I decorate the Christmas tree.  (Alone.  My husband puts on the lights then retreats to another room for a night of uninterrupted Xbox)  My favorite scene is probably your favorite scene, dancing on top of the pool!  Or maybe the hydrangea bushes?  Or the phone call in the hall?  Or the ending, sniff.  Don't forget the tissues.  I love that town.  We'll be knitting for Jimmy Stewart who deserves something timeless like this Herringbone Cardigan by Martin Storey.

This looks treacherous, but I'll bet it's not as hard as it looks.
It's a new pattern from Rowan Designer Knits
knit in Rowan Creative Focus Worsted.

8. You've noticed that most of my movies are very vintage.  The Holiday is newish as in 2006, but it plays exactly like it was a vintage movie.  Two unsettled single women decide to swap homes for the holidays.  One home is Southern California modern and the other is pure English country cottage charm.  If you haven't seen this movie, it's just delightful and worth a watch or two.  A very sweet movie with great sweaters.  There is a very tender and magical "tent scene" and we'll knit a star garland for the ceiling.  Star Garland by Kristen Ashbaugh-Helmreich.

Star Garland.  We'll have to knit ours in pink if it's to go in the tent!

9. Holiday Inn.  In this movie Bing Crosby has the hairbrained idea of opening an inn that's only open on HOLIDAYS!  Hmmm, doesn't sound terribly practical, but there are some great production scenes with a spectacular July 4th extravaganza.  In fact, every holiday gets a big extravaganza and I do adore that sort of thing.  For this movie let's knit something for ourselves!  As if we were going to the Inn for a sensational evening of dinner, dancing and entertainment.  We will need something very very special and when I think special, I almost always think Kim Hargreaves and Kidsilk Haze.  That combination just can't be beat.  Here is Mystic.  The simple shaping, soft gray color and light beading make it a truly beautiful holiday sweater.

We'll have to knit the matching scarf too!

10.  Little Women.  Any version will do.  Let's just say they are all excellent and worthy of watching over and over again.   Isn't Concord, Mass. just about the prettiest place in the winter?   As a child, after I read this book or watched the movie I remember wanting to be a better person.  If you loved reading this classic as a child, you will enjoy March by Geraldine Brooks.  This book brings to life the absent father of the March family and I enjoyed it very much.  But now back to knitting, the March girls would have been knitting hats for the community.  Here is a free pattern download from Purl Soho and is sized from newborn to adult male.

Knit in Purl's own Super Soft Merino bulky weight, these will go fast!

11.  I cannot have a Top 10 11 List without some Jane!  Let's watch Jane Austen's Emma with Kate Beckinsale.  There is always a reason and a season to read or watch Jane Austen.  In Emma, there is a snowy glimpse of what Christmas looked like in the English countryside 200 years ago.  I could see Emma slipping this over her head just as she alights from the carriage.  Iris by Kim Hargreaves.

Iris Mesh Shawl in Rowan Kidsilk Haze.

This was fun!  I know there's more and if I'm missing a favorite holiday movie of yours YOU MUST SHARE IT WITH ME!   In the meantime, gather up your yarn and needles, light the fire and turn on the telly.  It's time to knit.


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  1. love it! Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. We always watch The Sound of Music. What a fun blog post!

  3. Thank you for a post that must have taken a bit of time and a lot of thought to put together. And, you may also like "Love Actually". That, and "Holiday" are my modern go-to's for the holidays.

  4. Thank you for a perfect ending to my lunch break. There's a smile on my face! I especially enjoy the fantasy that these holiday movies provide. On another, it is fantasy for me to imagine knitting all those lovely patterns whilst watching the movies! But, I might just give one of them a try.

  5. The Bishop's Wife is one of my favorite movies and I will have to try your pretty angels!

  6. The Holiday was a great movie. Eli Wallach was absolutely superb. The only minus in the movie was the casting of Jack Black.

    The Family Man was also great for a modern movie. Nicolas Cage, Tea Leoni and Don Cheadle.

  7. A holiday season in our house is not complete unless we watch "Elf". Fun for all ages, and a great soundtrack. I will be knitting Maine Morning Mitts in a bright, fun color, probably a Noro yarn, while watching! Thanks for your list! I will watch them all! I especially love The Holiday.

  8. I stumbled across a well-written article by Mara Wilson not long ago:

    She seems very intelligent and well-adjusted. (Mild swearing in the article, just FYI)

  9. Did you knit that beautiful shawl while watching a movie. You are even more amazing than I thought.

  10. One of my favorite things is to watch Christmas movies and I love your selection. What fun! I would add Elf!

  11. Maybe Gone With the Wind...veeeeery long knitting and your project is nearly done! Thank you for you sharing with us.

  12. I think the relatively recent Love Actually is my favorite. I don't have knitting ideas yo go with it though.

  13. I love It's a Wonderful Life! We get the family together (all ten, soon to be eleven, of us) and watch it Christmas Eve. I might do a whole post centered around knits for the whole cast. Just because I'm inspired!

  14. Kristen, thank you for such a Wonderful list of movies!!! When my son was little we used to watch all those movies every night. One of our favorites was Christmas Carol.

  15. This is neat! I know that just about everyone associates certain movies with Christmas from their childhood or from some memorable time in their lives. I'm just a sucker for a good Christmas movie! "Little Women" is one of my favorites (the newer version more so than the original) and I watch it EVERY Christmas season. Another favorite is from a few years ago called "The Family Stone" starring Diane Keaton. Crazy Christmas romp with lots of sentimentality thrown in for good measure.

    Funny you ask about the last time we wore a gown! I am busily looking for a couple of ball gowns for the season!!! They are NOT so easy to come by!!! I used to have a closet FULL of them (back in the day when I really enjoyed going out to fancy balls and galas and such), but I'm down to zero now. I thought it would be fun to get out there and shop for them, but it has turned into doom and gloom. Nothing by "mother of the groom"-looking stuff here in this area. :-(

  16. I'd like to meet the guy who is modeling the Herringbone Caridigan. Carole

  17. I just came across this post on Reddit, it's really great! Love the movie-to-project inspiration pairings.


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