Donna Druchunas has a new book out from Martingale Press: Kitty Knits: Projects for Cats and Their People. I’m part of the blog tour, and we’ve been asked to talk about our cats. Ms. Bit will thus be making quite an appearance in a moment, but right now here’s what the book looks like, and I have a small story to tell about how part of it came together.
As Nomad Press, I publish some of Donna’s books—those that are on traditional and ethnic knitting and that don’t (so far) require color printing. (Nomad may be able to do color in the future, but currently doesn’t for both environmental and financial reasons. So we’re glad to see Donna’s work that needs color coming out from other presses.)
Anyway, that lovely pink sweater on the cover was threatened with not being in the manuscript for this book, for several reasons. So I ended up helping Donna tech edit the pattern (she was at one of those "I’m tired of looking at this" stages we all reach) and then, when the project was at risk of being cut because time was running out and there was no model garment, I volunteered to knit the body. Another knitter did the sleeves, and Donna assembled the pieces and added the trim and embroidery. It’s not at all my style or color of sweater, which made it fun to knit.
It’s nice to see it (1) finished and (2) looking so fine there on the cover.
For the work, Donna swapped me a outdated but still perfectly useful digital camera so I could play with getting this blog started. I’ve since gotten a different camera that doesn’t store its images on 3.5-inch diskettes, but by being able to use that one (which Donna’s husband Dom used to take the Alaska photos for Arctic Lace ) I learned that I did like doing the pictures and the blog.
Here’s another project from the book, being modeled by Donna’s older cat:
And, finally because the Empress of the Universe always gets star billing, here is our 20.75-year-old cat, Little Bit (who was named before we had any way to know she would stay small, which she certainly did):
She’s checking out a half-dozen of the felted mice from Kitty Knits. The purple one must have run out of the photo.
Here are all the mice the day before, in unfelted and unstuffed form:
They’re made from leftover scraps of Brown Sheep wool, Cascade 220, and Lion Brand Lion Wool. (Are they a quick knit? I didn’t have time to make a phone call this week to schedule an essential appointment, but in bits of time that were otherwise semi-occupied, I made these six mice. I threw them in the washer with a load of towels, dumped the whole lot in the dryer, and what came out is what you see, now stuffed and catnipped. They don’t have eyes or noses yet, but they will.)
Want one of these mice for your cat? If you’re one of the first six people to request one in the comments, I’ll send you one. Let me know if you have color preferences, although I can’t guarantee first choices (pink, red, white, greenish-heather, bright blue, purple). 3/3/08 All six have been spoken for! If you missed the opportunity, they are really quick to knit from Donna’s instructions. The shaping is great. They’d be a super project to teach someone techniques with, too (you or someone else).
Ms. Bit likes the mice, but prefers to harrass the dogs. Due to her advanced age, she gets away with more than she used to. She confuses Tussah:
by coming in right under the dog’s nose to eat the Wrong Kind of Chow:
Tussah has been taught not to growl, with reassurances that there is plenty more chow for everyone. Note the gray-sock-clad toe tipping the bowl at the perfect angle in BOTH photos. That isn’t me.
The fluff on the carpet and the piles of papers and books are, however, my fault. I’m in the middle of yet another project with impossible deadlines. It got a little messier than usual around here last weekend.
The Empress was not, however, inconvenienced, so all was well.