Saturday, August 04, 2007


A few months ago, I cast on for a cat bed, following Cat Bordhi's directions in "A Second Treasury of Magical Knitting." You knit one of her moebius strip borders, and then cast off, using a knitted-on i-cord bindoff (which does take some of the shine off the magic, because you have to do this over a couple hundred stitches, but ... it's still an interesting thing to knit.) So I did that, and then I took the loop of black knitting and tossed it into a basket.

I found it last night, and fished out the right needle and her book, and set out to finish this cat bed. Since I'd knit the border, I got some secondhand bulky Lopi in a nice natural color and as it was practically free, it was the right price for cat knitting.

While the Fool snoozed in the armchair, I did this:
"Pick up and knit 200 stitches directly beneath I-cord edge ... bring the two needle tips together to join and knit in the round, without any twist on the needle."

I knit four rows, knit my increase row and went to bed.

This morning, the Fool picked it up to look at it.
"Hmm," he said. "You twisted your join."

I did? I had. We frogged the project back to the picked up stitches, put them back on the circular needle and started to examine my knitting.

Somehow, I'd managed to not only put one twist in my moebius strip, but two. I studied Cat Bordhi's directions again.

"It is rare to have more than one crossing, but you must always check to be sure," she wrote, while discussing how to cast on to knit a moebius strip. "I learned the hard way."

And so did I. I was at a critical knitting juncture. Should I:
a) Rip the entire project out, cast on properly and create a moebius strip (with 200 stitches to knit into an I-cord bindoff) to make this project as depicted in her book?
b) Pick up around the edge of a wonky moebius strip, twist my join (the only thing possible) and ... um ... make something up.

I read further and noticed that it says on the back of her book, in a little biography, "(Cat) likes nothing better than to have a knitting experiment go awry because it means very interesting, possibly never-before-seen things are soon to be revealed."

Excellent! "B" it is!

I think what I'll do is knit four wonky rows, cast off, and then think of a way to pick up and knit something that looks like a proper cat bed bottom on this thing I've made. It's all felted anyway, and the worst that will happen is it will look somewhat more organic and sculptural than maybe Cat Bordhi intended.

Besides, it's not like I'm knitting for very harsh critics. As long as I make a big fuss when the cats mess with this felted cat bed and chase them off, I can pretty much guarantee we won't be able to pry them out of it with a stick.


LaurieM said...

It sounds perfect for such contrary animals. Double twist and all!

Franklin said...


She would figure out a way around the double twist issue, and then she would patent it.

Cheryl in VA said...

I see you have figured out the true root of animal psychology. Trust me it is no different with dogs than with cats.
With that in mind, I think you are totally on the right track.
Knit On!!