Kaffe Blanket

January 03, 2022

This has been my knitting buddy for the last year and I'm going to miss knitting all the colorful, gartery, stripyness. I was inspired by Kaffe Fassett's Garter Striped Shawl.  It's called a shawl but I would never wear this as a shawl and happy to have it as a blanket to cover my knees while I'm knitting. My finished blanket is 50x65" and weighs close to 2 pounds. I cast on 250 stitches and used a size 5 needle. I figure I used about 18 skeins total of Rowan Felted Tweed DK in at least that many colors. I had a lot of FT in my stash, but greatly underestimated how much yarn it would actually take. I had to supplement with some purchased orphans on sale at my lys and partial skeins from sellers on Ravelry. Eighteen skeins figures to be about 3,400 yards! I worked on it for two years as a travel/brainless knit. I didn't actually purchase the pattern but by looking at pictures I tried my best to get the general feel of Kaffe's color genius. FYI, Fruity Knitting has a great two part interview with Kaffe Fassett. Andrea does a really good job and you can tell Kaffe really enjoyed her. View part one here, part two here. Several years ago I took a class from Kaffe's partner, Brandon Mabley, and just as the class began, Kaffe set off to walk around our town. I told Brandon that Kaffe was going to get a lot of attention, and he asked me if he thought he would be recognized. I said, "not so much that but because he's tall and handsome and that head of silver hair", plus he was wearing purple pants. Brandon told me that Kaffe hated all that adoration and tried to avoid it whenever possible. I think the gals go mad for him. I don't know if Brandon told me that because he thought I might be one of those adoring ladies, but he didn't have to worry at all because fawning over someone is the last thing I would do. My local yarn store owner asked me to join them for dinner (thrilling, but I kept my cool) after the class and I was THIS close to asking them to my house for a pre-dinner drink, but shyness overcame me and I didn't. I regret it because I think people always enjoy going to someone's home in a foreign country, even though Kaffe grew up close to me in Big Sur, he has lived in England for 60 years. Anyway, the Fruity Knitting interviews are delightful and she also takes you on a tour of their colorfully jumbled and crafty filled London home. Treat!

Picture day for my colorful blanket was very gloomy but made for brilliantly bright photos. It was actually sprinkling when I took the pictures and when I finally ran inside the rain started to come down hard. After years of little rain, California has recently seen some good rain storms. December was just wonderful with gray skies, puddles, umbrellas and raincoats. Even having mud is nice. We scrimp and save water so much, that when water just falls from the sky for free, I stare up in amazement. California had a severe drought in the early 80s when my son was born. I remember he was about 4 or 5 when we went on a walk after a rare rainstorm and we came to a rain puddle. He looked at it and I told him he could jump in it, that is what kids do. He quickly got the hang of it and announced that puddles were fun and we should always have them for jumping. I agree! 

My leftovers are on sale on Ravelry here.

My husband is sitting next to me right now looking through the recipe index that I made last year. He's rifling through with knitted brow to choose 3 recipes to eat this week. Such concentration, you would think he was planning the invasion of Normandy. Since I'm the main cook I told him I get final approval on the choices, but he says he should have the final approval because he's the main eater. Who do you agree with? I hope me. By the way, it's taking him forever. But he's getting so into it I think I'll have him do this every week. 

OK, finally he's done and I agreed to all: Chicken and Broccoli Stuffed Potato, Chili Lime Salmon, Chicken Kiev. The last two are Home Chef recipes that we have cooked before and loved. They have the recipes online so you can make them anytime without needing a food subscription. I paused my subscription in November and December and will start up again in mid January. We usually get two dinners three times a week, usually two weeks out of the month. Out of all the dozens of subscription dinners we've tried, and we've tried many, Home Chef is my favorite. 

I'm still cleaning! My husband asked me to take New Years Day off, but every other day I've put in a few hours and have really been enjoying it. I really don't know what that says about me. Hmmm.

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  1. Love the colors in your blanket, Kristen! You've got me thinking. Love the story about Kaffe Fasset. He is quite a personage. I got to take a class from him back in the 80s and I didn'really knit then but my English neighbor did. And Fruity Knitting is just the best. I got the sense he really liked Andrea, too. Chloe

    1. Thank you. I'll bet you have stash you could corral into a blanket! Yes, Andrea is a good girl all right. She has handled her last two years with her husband very well. I admire her. I actually don't watch podcasts of any kind but then the pandemic hit and I watched an interview she did and decided she was a good one to watch. I haven't watched even half of them yet, but I'm working my way through. But the name, Fruity Knitting, where on earth did that come from? When she first started she asked me to be a part of the knitter of the world segment, but with a name like Fruity, I put it in my trash can immediately. Words can be deceiving.

  2. In one of their episodes, she and Andrew addressed this issue. As Australians they had never heard of this double meaning and had a chuckle over their discovery. I think they looking for a theme for their podcast and thought a bowl of fruit in the background was an easy prop to film and change the contents of. After about 20 or so episodes it was kind f late to change the name. I also came somewhat late to this podcast and loved catching up! Hope you get another chance to be on it Kristen! I would love to see it. I'm not sure about the blanket...although it is nice to have a constant, easy knitting companion. Chloe

    1. That's for the reason for the name. Honestly, I could think of no reason at all, but this does make sense.

      The blanket, yes, it's nice to have something to knit if there is no electricity or if brain is too tired.

  3. You have provided valuable data for us. It is great and informative for everyone. Keep posting! also look at this Baby Milestone Blanket. I am very thankful to you.


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