posts / 🧶When you need a baby blanket yesterday…

🧶When you need a baby blanket yesterday…

I can barely stand it…

It’s almost time!!!

In just a couple of days, the Stars for our upcoming Masterclass Season 8 premiere will start dropping hints on Instagram…

And then this Friday April 21 they’ll all announce together on Instagram – and Earlybird signups will begin!

We’ve all kept this secret for almost a year, which let me tell you is a miracle in and of itself.

(I’m notorious for spilling beans and the team practically has to wire my mouth shut to keep this secret!)

This year’s theme is Breaking The Ice because we’ll be heading to Iceland 🇮🇸 and also because we’ll continue to help you break through any long-held limiting beliefs, like “I can’t do Icelandic knitting” and “I can’t do complex cabling” and “I can’t make a sweater I’ll actually wear” and maybe even “I’ll never crochet.”

Earlybird is the best time to save your seat for the Season 8 Premiere this fall, because you’ll get first chance at the special yarns, kits and bags (yes, I said BAGS plural and because I can’t stop myself, here’s another hint: 🇦🇷)

Plus, Earlybird pricing is $20 less than it will be later this fall.

To make sure you don’t miss the (short) signup window, click here to get a reminder when it opens this Friday.

I cannot wait to share the names and stories of the phenomenal Season 8 collaborative cast of Stars with you!

xoxo

Sometimes you need to make a baby blanket.

And sometimes you need to make a baby blanket yesterday

Because the baby is already here!

My dear friend Ira and her hubby Caleb celebrated the arrival of their first baby, Michael, a few weeks back.

Early on in her pregnancy, I gave her a cute felted mobile with Peruvian alpacas circling around…but she couldn’t help it, her face fell a bit…

“I was hoping you would make us a blanket” she said.

The problem was, I’ve had an injured finger and it’s been in a splint the past 6 weeks, in an effort to avoid surgery. But you know what we say…

“Knitters Find A Way”…right?

I’m supposed to keep my pointer finger immobilized. So I played around with using my middle finger, but had trouble “wrapping.”

The final answer? An adaptive method I’ve dubbed the “continental bird.”  🤣

Seriously though, I’m super happy with the project I chose. It’s an ultra-simple, 2-skein, stroller-size  blanket that makes brilliant use of my absolute favorite ultra-soft cotton blend yarn, Cumulus.

The pattern called “Sliding Is Fun” by srossinifaust on Ravelry is a trifecta:

1. It’s FREE,
2. It’s all knit (garter stitch) on US #8 needles, and
3. It’s fun! Every couple rows, you get to alternate yarns and slide the stitches – whooooosh – from one end to the other. Plus it’s super fun and motivating to watch the Cumulus Rainbow yarn change color slowly and fade as you go!


Photo courtesy of srossinifaust via Ravelry

You can literally mix and match any 1 skein of solid Cumulus yarn and 1 skein of Cumulus Rainbow and you will get an awesome blanket. Coordinating or contrasting – all the colors work together!

I used Cumulus Rainbow 401 + Cumulus (solid) 28. Other great pairings would be:
Cumulus Rainbow 215 + Cumulus Solid 44 (girly combo) or
Cumulus Rainbow 217 + Cumulus Solid 24 (desert neutrals)

You can make your own “Sliding Is Fun” for around $50!

Shop Cumulus, Cumulus Rainbow and Cumulus Degrade yarns here.

P.S. Looking for other pattern options? Check out Cumulus Baby Blanket by Loop Designs – you’ll need 2 skeins of Cumulus Degrade. For a crochet option, check out Continuous Crochet Baby Blanket by Dedri Uys, also free on Ravelry (go up to an L hook with 2 skeins of Cumulus Rainbow) to get a really fun and colorful effect!

“Continuous Crochet Baby Blanket” photo courtesy of Dedri Uys via Ravelry

“Cumulus Baby Blanket” photo courtesy of Loops Design via Ravelry

Recipe courtesy of Half-Baked Harvest

For this week’s recipe, we’re sticking with the Slide theme! May we present Pull-Apart Spinach and Artichoke Dip Sliders! They take only 15 minutes to put together, then bake for an hour (yay knitting time!). We’re betting these go onto your regular appetizer/party rotation. If you make them – or cast on a Cumulus blanket – please snap a photo and tag us @knitstars!

Pull Apart Roasted Garlic Spinach and Artichoke Dip Sliders

1 head garlic
extra virgin olive oil
1 package (12-count) dinner rolls, halved lengthwise
6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed, and squeezed dry of excess water
1 jar marinated artichokes, chopped
1 cup shredded fontina or mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated parmesan or asiago cheese
1 teaspoon onion powder
kosher salt and black pepper (to taste)
chili flakes (to taste)
pickled jalapeños (optional)
3 tablespoons salted butter, at room temp or melted
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried parsley

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400° F.

2. Slice off the top portion of the garlic head to expose some of the cloves. Place the garlic on a piece of foil. Drizzle with olive oil, wrap it up, and bake for 40-55 minutes, until deeply golden and very soft.

3. Meanwhile, in a bowl mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, spinach, artichokes, half of the mozzarella, half of the parmesan, and the onion powder. Season with salt, pepper, and chili flakes (to taste).

4. Place the bottom half of the dinner rolls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment. Top with spinach dip, then the remaining mozzarella. Arrange the jalapeños on top. Place the top half of the roll over the cheese.

5. Let the garlic cool, then squeeze the cloves out into a bowl. Add the butter, remaining parmesan, oregano, parsley, and chili flakes (to taste). Mash the cloves into the butter with a fork. Spread the butter over the top of the rolls. Cover the rolls and bake 10 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking another 10 minutes, until the cheese has melted.

6. Brush with any remaining garlic butter, serve immediately

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