The 40 Year Old Bat Mitzvah

Encore 8-Hour Baby Blanket: simple texture baby blanket

#1 Question: "Do you knit?" #2 Question: "Where did you get that fabulous bag?"

I have a project!

Those of you who have known me for a long time will know that I have been a perennial just beginning (first day!) knitter for most of my adult life.

Now I am a solid beginner!

Years ago I met Peggy Hagberg when she was teaching knitting at a now-closed shop near Miss Sue’s Dance Studio on Jefferson Avenue in Temecula. I always intended to take one of her classes but the timing never worked out quite right.

Meanwhile, I took a couple of workshops from local yoga and knitting instructor Erica Myers-Russo through City of Temecula Parks & Rec, but I enrolled in sessions that were too few and far between and kept forgetting what I’d learned.

All of this is my long-winded way of saying: hallelujah! I found Peggy again at Daily Fiber Yarn Co., Temecula’s “LYS” (local yarn store in knitting parlance.)

I have been knitting daily to make sure I don’t forget what I’ve learned and really get casting on, knitting, purling, and binding off (my skillz) ingrained in my muscle memory.

And it is sort of working…..woot!

I have been bringing my knitting with me in my beautiful, capacious Chris Martin Designs shoulder bag. Readers will remember Chris’ custom ballerina dolls from this post on my other blog.

Well, my mom gave my sister and me these terrific bags made from vintage fabric. They are reversible and I love both sides equally. I have been using mine (see above) as a knitting bag.

At my last workshop with Peggy, I chose a project. When I told her I wanted to make a baby blanket, at first she seemed concerned that it might be a stretch for me and that I might get frustrated. But I think my fine motor skills are improving (thanks,!), because after she watched me practice purling and knitting in the same row, she led me to a pattern book of baby blankets and helped me choose one.


So what am I making?

The book is The Encore 8-Hour Baby Blanket…Revisited from the Plymouth Yarn Company. I’m making a “simple texture baby blanket” and guess what?! I am at the point where I can actually start to see the “simple texture” develop as I knit. How cool is that? It’s very motivating.

My only beef is with the name. I mean, c’mon. Eight hours? In what alternate universe?

I like making patterns. I have to really focus on certain rows, and I find it helps to say what I’m doing to myself quietly under my breath. So for example, when I’m doing my pattern row, I’ll whisper “purl, purl, purl,” then “knit, knit!” and it sounds like the strangest and most literal pep talk you’ve ever overheard: “Knit, knit, knit, knit! You can do it! Knit.” And I do.


4 Responses

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  1. rita Lee said, on May 19, 2011 at 5:18 PM

    i love your website you sound like me i know how to cast on, knit and pearl and i am trying to find me a baby blanket thats is easy for a real beginner meeeeeeeeeeeeeee
    if you have any ideals can you please share with me

  2. Peggy Hagberg said, on September 7, 2011 at 3:52 PM

    Hi Juliet!
    this time I found YOU! I am still teaching knitting, this time from my home until I can find a better spot for a classroom. the finished blanket looks beautiful!

    • Juliet said, on September 24, 2011 at 6:56 AM

      Hi Peggy! I am STILL working on that first legwarmer. I have had to unwind several times. I want to get to one of your knitting classes at your house but have a crazy schedule now. I think the Panera drop-in is going to be my best bet. Hope to see you soon:-)

  3. ricki dayan said, on July 8, 2012 at 6:04 AM

    HI Juliet!! We are teachers on summer vacation and planing to knit some baby blanket sweaters hats and booties for a GOOD CAUSE .We are asking you will be willing to send us the patron of “8 hour baby blanket” and or other for no charge thanking you in advance ricki!

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