Our Best Projects of 2020 Show and Tell

We had 31 entries for our “Best Projects of 2020” Show and Tell at the February 2021 meeting! Here is a roundup of all of the projects.




What I’m most proud of in 2020 is finishing 17 projects, most of which were from my unfinished pile and had been sitting around for a long time. My favorite is the Kirigami sweater, which I started in March 2018 in a class with Gretchen at the Yarnery. I especially love the fit of this sweater and the textured neckline. The yarn is Brooklyn Tweed Arbor in the color Cobbler.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/kirigami-2

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/FroggyGirl72/kirigami




My best project I made in 2020 is the cardigan “Daisy,” by Debbie Bliss. I particularly like the Western look of the pattern, and it is also very comfortable to wear. I used Loops and Threads Woolike, with 2 strands held together. I was also able to use yarn leftover from a previous project in the designs, another bonus!

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/daisy-102



I am proud of these because it took me a long time to finish, and because I altered the pattern to include a thumb gusset (the original pattern did not). This was a test knit for the designer, and after checking the pattern for errors/clarity, I asked if I could alter my mitts to include the gusset thumb so that they would fit my hand better – permission was granted. I had to putz with it a bit, trying not to break up the honeycomb pattern on the hand while adding the gusset. Since I was branching out, I was not under time constraints to complete my mitts within the testing period. Of course, lots of other things got in the way and these were set aside several times. Finally finished and turned out as I had hoped.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/bee-fingerless-mitts

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/knittinginpublic/bee-fingerless-mitts



My first (and so far only) double knit project. Pitter Pat scarf pattern by Lisa Hannan Fox. Yarn is Big Bad Wool Weepaca and Cascade 220 Superwash.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/pitter-pat-scarf

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/weissmntc/pitter-pat-scarf



I dipped my toe into designing by hacking the basic Flax pattern and adding a complex cable on the front and a simple one along the sleeves from Norah Gaughan’s amazing cable sourcebook. Made just in time for her 3rd birthday and fits great! The yarn is Valley Yarns Northfield, color #32 Honey Gold.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/flax



I am most proud of taking up the Guild’s challenge to support BIPOC designers and dyers. Among several designs I bought and knit is the Peaceful People Hat. The yarns are Blue Sky Fibers Woolstok Worsted and Sweet Georgia Superwash Worsted.

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/artistnumber91/the-peaceful-people-hat

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-peaceful-people-hat




Inspired by Shelly Kang’s blankie, I cast this on in January 2016 and finished it in July 2020.  With nowhere to go I was out of excuses and so finally got it done! Using the domino knitting technique learned from Susanna Hansson at Minnesota Knitters’ Days 2014 with leftover sock yarn. Includes 720 squares.

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/soxanne/crazy-quilt



I came up with the design while exploring how to knit cables a different color from the background. It turned out that the theme for The Knitters Guild Association’s annual design contest for 2020 was Honoring Our Hands. So, I entered these mittens – and won 1st Place! The yarn is Knit Picks Pallette. The colors remind me of a box of Fanny Farmer chocolate mints.

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/jma/colorwork-cable-mittens



My granddaughter in her knit pants. She loves them. Not the most difficult, but a fun knit. She told her mother she “looked like a princess” when wearing them.



20 colorwork ornaments that I worked on in between projects all year. I had decided to make one for each of my and my husband’s parents, siblings, and nieces and nephews. Super rewarding, but never again…too much pressure with the Christmas deadline (including sending them out)! I used Rauma Strikkegarn.

Pattern Link: https://www.yarnspirations.com/patons-merry-fair-isle-knit-ornaments/PAK0501-001788M.html



It was a hard choice, but I will nominate my Damselfly Cap designed by Alice Starmore.  It is knit using Alice Starmore Hebridean 2 Ply yarn.  I have gotten so many compliments on this hat, including from non-knitters – even men.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/damselfly-hat-set

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/spockie/damselfly-hat-set



This pattern was Indian Slip-On No. 13A. from a digitized Corticelli book published in 1922. No information on row gauge or finished size, but pattern was dependent on working exact number of rows to make the pattern. Uncertain about the yarn called for and its qualities, because it was used for many patterns in the book with a wide range of gauges. I had to add an additional section in the body to make it long enough (and rearrange the motifs). Sweater knit in one piece, starting at the bottom of the back. Learned to crochet in order to make the collar and cuffs. More than 500 ends to weave in! I loved the slashed sleeves, which is one of the reasons I knit this. This is part of my long term project to knit a sweater from each decade of the 20th century (unlikely I will wear it much at all!) Yarn used was Berroco Vintage worsted weight.

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/Rox/indian-slip-on-no-13a

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/indian-slip-on-no-13a



The hat and mittens were made for my granddaughter. I used cascade 220 worsted in color – cerise and white. The pattern was Snowman Hat and mitten set that I changed the mitten design.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/snowman-hat-and-mitten-set




I’ve done a lot of sample knitting for Knotions but these socks were a pretty unique challenge. The designer hadn’t knit up more than a swatch and here was a set of five mini skeins, not a fade or anything, that I had to work with. The editor of Knotions gave me free rein so I had to visualize what colors would work and in what sequence. She expected that I would end up with mismatched socks, but I didn’t. 🙂 These socks have literally everything and the kitchen sink in them. You start with a corrugated rib, then elongated stitches, then stranded colorwork, a two color eye of partridge heel, and a foot with a little bit of texture. But because of my limited yarn I had to do a fade with the amber and wheat colors. All in all, a mad challenge and I’m pretty proud of these tiny works of art. 🙂

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/carved-wood



This was the most advanced lace project I’d tackled yet. The pattern was written for people familiar with advanced lace patterns and didn’t have very detailed instructions. I spent a lot of time prepping, studying, and seeking advice to understand it. Even then I frogged a good chunk of it several times before getting it right. This was a big step forward for me in terms of my understanding of lace patterns and lace knitting. I used is Ella Rae Lace Merino in colorway Multy. I ran out just as I started the border, so I finished the border with Stitch Together Stitch Smooth Sock yarn in Silvertongue. I’m actually really happy with how the last minute substitution turned out.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/gail-aka-nightsongs

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/kheila/gail-aka-nightsongs




This is “Oliver Pig” by Susan B Anderson. I again used Barrett Wool wool. This is a favorite because I made it for a friend and she gave it to her niece – who lives it. This was so fun to make.  As I knit- it was coming alive as a whimsical toy. When I posted photos on Instagram, to my surprise , Susan B Anderson liked it and sent comments!! Kind of fun.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/oliver-pig



I knit these for my granddaughters. The yarn is Bernat Softee Chunky. The best part is that when my granddaughter wore it to school she told people all day that her grandma made it for her. It’s a warm hug from me on a cold day.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/azel-pullover




The Danish Nattrøjer Socks to Knit by Mimi Seyferth in Piecework Summer 2019 seized my interest right away. I loved the quilt-esque pattern. During the Great Guild Getaway of 2019, I dyed sock yarn with Sam of Lavender Lune and decided to use it for this pattern. I started them in 2019, but got sidetracked. I picked them up back up in mid-2020 and finished them. Then I submitted a photo of them to Piecework and they kindly published a photo of them in their “from the post” section in the Spring 2021 issue. I did make modifications for fit. I knit them toe up instead with my own selection of toe and heel. I also abbreviated the chart a few stitches on either side to fit them to me.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/danish-nattrjer-socks-to-knit

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/sockNubbins/danish-nattrjer-socks-to-knit



This is a picture of my Quiznos portrait puppet.  Quinos is a Barbados Blackbelly sheep and is part of the Save ‘Em 2 Save ‘Em project. This project supports and encourages the use of fiber from legacy breeds.  Barbados Blackbelly is a hair sheep. The hair from Quiznos was spun by me and knit free form into a puppet to commemorate both him and my efforts. After I had completed him, I read that the fiber from hair sheep is supposed to be too difficult to spin. Good thing I didn’t know this before I started!



When I was a child, my grandma knit me a Norwegian winter bonnet – the red and white one in photo. I loved to wear it. When my granddaughter was born 2 years ago, I found my old hat, charted it out, and then knit it up in 2 shades of blue this past fall, and mailed it to her (she lives in NYC) before it got cold outside. I used smaller needles and Plymouth DK merino superwash yarn to get a smaller size. (I think my grandma used worsted weight acrylic.) It was so fun to be able to replicate this pattern from about 60 years ago, and so fun to see pictures of little Thea wearing it! If I knit this again, I would make it a few rows deeper.  It was also a challenge since it was knit flat, and I had never done fair isle on a flat piece before.




I am most proud of my Neural Knitworks sweater. It’s knit in Valley Yarns Huntington fingering weight merino wool. I designed it with the help of a neural network trained on old punchcard patterns. A colleague of mine trained the neural network model, and the model generated each of the colorwork patterns. These patterns generated by the algorithm were all over the place — from symmetric and very geometric to pretty amorphous. I tried to pick several pattern designs from each end of the spectrum. I then designed the cardigan with minimal shaping to take advantage of the rectangular patterns. I love that this project combines so many aspects of my life, my love of pattern spotting, model building, and knitting, to create a useful garment. Bonus points in that I’ve worn it at least weekly since I cast off.

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/AlkaPalka/neural-knitworks-sweater



This shawl is called Egyptian Crescent by Kieran Foley. The yarn is Seda Encantada by Dibadu 100% silk. The colors are red, yellow and blue. The shawl is knitted with 2 strands and because the colors are varied it gives a subtle effect. My husband and I returned from a trip to Egypt on March 9 right before the lockdown so when Kieran released this shawl I had to knit it in honor of our trip and this year. The pattern included stacked stitches, beading and as a bonus, slippery yarn.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/egyptian-crescent



My Best of 2020 is a collaboration with my 20yr old daughter, Sydney. Sydney was the knitter and I was Tech support and cheerleader. We knit The Winterfell Sweater which was written for super chunky yarn. Sydney picked Cascade 128, a bulky yarn (10sts/4in vs pattern 7sts/4in). This is MY ‘best of’ because of our partnership, my re-design resulting in a perfect fitting sweater, and my young-adult wanted to spend time with me.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-winterfell-sweater


Deb Parker

I’ve attached a photo of the hat, cowl, and mitten set that I knit using handspun made from batts I prepared way back in 2019. This wasn’t a technically challenging project, but it felt great to get back to knitting with my handspun after a long hiatus. Bright colors were exactly what I needed as winter set in! Knit with handspun and Blue Sky Fibers Woolstok Worsted (colorway: Thermal Spring)

Hat and Cowl: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/anthology-2

Mittens: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/double-stuff-mittens-2

Project Page Mittens: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/ParksAnew/double-stuff-mittens

Project Page Cowl: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/ParksAnew/anthology-3



My favorite project from 2020 is the Hudson Valley Cardigan designed by Patty Lyons.  The yarn is Rowan Cotton Cashmere. I am relatively new to knitting.  This is my second piece of clothing.  It is my favorite because I learned so much about knitting, especially knitting cables without a cable needle.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/hudson-valley-cardi-video-sweater-class



I was inspired to knit some hats for our 2021 service partners, so I pulled out this pattern that I designed a bunch of years ago. I had always intended to write up the pattern, but never got around to it – until now! I am proud that I am now able to share it.

Yarn: Sample was knit in a yarn that has been discontinued; Suggested yarn Malabrigo Chunky.

Pattern Link:  https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/my-mountain-hat

The pattern is free with the coupon code “MINNESOTA”.



The pattern is Hogwarts socks knitted in Knitpicks stroll. It was a Christmas present for my daughter who is a huge Harry Potter fan.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/tylypahka-sukat-hogwarts-socks



This is a photo of the Nighthawk Skull Cap from Shetland Wool Adventures Journal. I knit this in December as a donation to the upcoming Textile Center auction “Fiber For All” – a goal to improve my colorwork tension and get ready to cast on a Marie Walling sweater in 2021!

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/nighthawk-skull-cap




This prayer shawl was made for a dear friend in Tennessee. She was diagnosed with oral cancer shortly after we moved from Chattanooga to MN. As a going away gift, she had given me the Bernat Pop! yarn. I decided to use her gift to create this shawl. Separated each color from the Pop! skein and used them for decreasing color stripes. Love the way this shawl hugs the shoulders, making it the perfect long distance hug of support. Yarns used: MC-Loops & Threads Impeccable Solids, colorway Natural and CC: Bernat Pop! colorway, Full Spectrum

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cloud-on-her-shoulders



Hue Shift…the eight year afghan

I purchased the Hue Shift kit from Knit Picks with some birthday money in the fall of 2012. I knit the first quadrant of 25 squares pretty quickly, and really enjoyed knitting mitered squares. But then it became my oldest WIP. I’d pick it up every so often. Squares were added. Quadrants were finished, but I didn’t do a good job of sewing in the ends as I went the longer I worked on it. I moved homes with this afghan twice. At the beginning of 2020 I had a new determination to finish it once and for all. I sewed in all the ends; spent a few afternoons seaming it together; and then had to face picking up 250-270 stitches per side (in black yarn no less!) to finish the border. In April as everything was shut down, I crocheted 49 hearts out of the scraps and hung them in my front windows. But the afghan still wasn’t finished. I couldn’t let this WIP move into 2021, so I knit the final border, wove in the final ends, and finally finished the eight year afghan!

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/hue-shift-afghan




This is my Endräkt cardigan, designed by Ivar Asplund and knitted out of Cascade Ecological Wool. I started it in April and finished it on June 14, the day before I went into labor with my son Ira. I didn’t block it until September but I’ve worn it almost every day since. I’m proud that I spent the last days of my pregnancy making a really beautiful sweater for myself, proud that I used stash yarn for an impulse project and it worked out, and proud that I have made something that I could throw on and wear easily while caring for a little baby. I recently washed it for the first time (yikes) and can say that it held up amazingly well to all that my life has thrown at it.

Pattern Link: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/endrakt

Project Page: https://www.ravelry.com/projects/shira-b/endrakt

Recent Posts

Headshot of Roxanne RichardsonRoxanne Richardson is a knitting communicator who lives in Minneapolis. Her YouTube channel explores a variety of knitting-related topics, including knitting history and techniques, and she writes technical knitting articles for Interweave publications. She’s a certified master hand knitter and certified knitting teacher, and she can’t wait to answer your burning knitting questions.

Currently Open

Marketing Director

The marketing director position is currently open. For more information contact the Guild President, president@knitters.org



(Term 1, Year 2)

A visiting friend from Seattle taught Kelly the very basics of knitting (a twisted loop cast on and just the knit stitch) in 2008 before flying home. Turning to the internet (thanks knittinghelp.com!) Kelly taught herself through a lot of trial and error. Uncontent to keep knitting the scarf she’d started as her first project, she jumped into knitting a pair of striped mittens for her non-knitter, but very knitworthy, twin sister. Twelve years later the mittens are still in her sister’s glove box, and Kelly is usually horrified when she pulls them out and sees the mistakes she made using double pointed needles for the first time. Kelly loves knitting socks and is thankful for the many months of cold weather when she gets to exclusively wear her handknits. (she, her, hers)



(Term 1, Year 1)

Kendra lives in the Twin Cities and learned to hand knit from her mother in middle school. In the last few years, she has also learned crochet and machine knitting. Kendra enjoys knitting items to donate and challenging herself with new techniques. She prefers knitting in the round with colorful yarn. (she, her, hers)



(Term 2, Year 2)

Rose learned to knit from her mother at the age of ten. She started knitting on the ends of small paint brushes. She continued to knit off and on through her teenage and young adult years and became a more avid knitter after taking a Norwegian sweater knitting class through community education. Today, knitting has become a passion and she knits for charity, herself, and her family her stash. She enjoys meeting other knitters and learning new techniques.

Open Position

Programming Director

(3-year term)

This position is currently open. If you are interested in volunteering for the Guild board, please contact our president, Kelly, at the email me link below.


Service Director

(Term 1, Year 3)

Betsy never had patience for knitting, until she found herself spending a lot of time at little league games and waiting for the last kid to emerge from the locker room after swim practice. With her background in graphic design, stranded colorwork has a natural appeal. Not to mention the practicality of an extra layer of warmth. Betsy has recently begun publishing her original hat and cowl patterns, which are available on Ravelry. (she, her, hers) (See our Service Knitting Page for more information about our current projects and donation process.)


Membership/Programming Director

(Term 2, Year 1)

Nikky was first introduced to knitting in 2012 when her visiting sister-in-law taught her the basics of casting on and the knit stitch. A few weeks later, she learned how to purl from her mother-in-law. From there, it quickly became a passion and she has taken on each new project with a desire to expand her skill and discover new techniques. She loves a good mystery (knit-a-long) and knits way more shawls than a single person can wear in a month.


Technology Director

(Term 1, Year 2)

Melissa has been knitting for 15 years. She loves socks and sweaters. She is a new member who hopes to use her marketing background to lift up the MKG. While she isn't local to MN, she really loves the atmosphere created by the Guild. Melissa and significant other Al enjoy traveling, wherein Al graciously offers to drive so Melissa can knit in the passenger seat. (she, her, hers)


Yarnover Committee Chair

While Anna learned to knit at some long-forgotten point in time, her commitment to the craft really began her freshman year of college. Sitting still has never been Anna’s strong suit, and giving her hands something to do while chatting with friends or watching movies in the dorm brought a sense of calm during this new chapter of her life. Once the sense of calm wore off (and no one else needed a scarf), she began trying new techniques, patterns, and projects, and until 2018 was primarily a self-taught knitter. After being intimidated early in her crafting, Anna feels strongly about creating a welcoming environment within the fiber community for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds. She enjoys knitting and fiber traveling, test and service knitting, a good challenge (knitting or otherwise), and is likely to have at least 3 WIPs at any one time. She is also learning to spin and ply her own yarn! (she/her/hers)

A photograph of hands knitting green yarn against a black background.Project HandWork is an exhibit of photos by photographer Christopher Dykes. Using flash, a backdrop, and the infinite human variety, Christopher is collecting a series of images of hands at work in the fiber community. Manicures, hangnails, tattoos, wristwatches, cheap yarn, expensive silk, easy socks and exquisite lace all show the human diversity and the compulsion to create.

Yarnover attendees may have their hands photographed for a $50 sitting fee. Each sitter will receive an edited photo via email. The sitting fee goes to Help In Crisis, his local domestic abuse shelter. 



Laura Haave

Great Guild Getaway Committee Chair

Laura learned to knit in 2003 by taking a four-week class during MIT's annual January Independent Activities Period. The class project was a striped hat knit in the round, and since that time, Laura has been a big advocate of 1) helping other adults learn to knit for the first time, 2) hats as a manageable first project, and 3) circular needles for everything. She enjoys thinking about knitting and planning her next project almost as much as she enjoys actually knitting. Laura is highly motivated by knit-alongs and loves to knit in community. (she, her, hers)


Newsletter Editor

I grew up watching my mom knit. She tried to teach me as a kid and I never enjoyed it, but after finishing college I found myself with extra time and no hobbies. In the last 20 years I have dove in all the way and love to learn new and challenging techniques. As my fiber love has grown, I have also started raising sheep in order to go from sheep to sweater. I love interacting with the sheep who have big personalities and learning to process and spin the wool has been a great adventure.


Vice President

(Term 1, Year 2)

Meg grew up surrounded by makers. Her mom, a master quilter, former Home Ec teacher, and 4-H club leader in Duluth, taught her to sew, embroider, and cook. She won a trip to the State Fair as the Dress Review Princess at 13! Another MKG member taught her to knit continental style 15 years ago. Meg can’t sit still and NOT be knitting, embroidering, rug hooking or sewing. Favorite thing to knit? Mittens! She loves taking classes and learning new things – absolutely amazed and inspired by all the amazing knitters in the guild! (she, her, hers)

Our spinning demonstrations are sponsored by Get Bentz Farm. 

Theresa Bentz of Get Bentz Farm, Northfield, MNAfter growing up in the city and suburbs, the owners of Get Bentz Farm felt a need to be closer to nature and to be more connected to where their food came from. 

In 2014, they found a farm house for sale and later that year they decided on and purchased their first two Icelandic sheep. 

Once they had a good size flock they began marketing the amazing meat and wool. Initially, they found that many mills in the area do not process dual coated long wools, which slowed down their growth in yarn, but they did find a great market for wool filled bedding products and batting for spinning. 

Today, they have a variety of yarns, batting and roving as well as finished products like dryer balls, sheepskins, and wool bedding. Most recently, they opened their own Get Bentz Wool Mill as well as their own line of yarn – Badgerface Fiber.

Mona McNeely been a certified Iyengar Yoga instructor since 2016 and has studied yoga since 2002.   

She has three grown kids and two, almost three, grandchildren. Her grandma taught her to knit when she was seven. She picked it up again in her early 20’s and hasn’t put the needles down since. She is also an avid spinner and has woven her share of rugs. In her spare time, she volunteers at a non-profit called We Can Ride where they use horses as therapy for people with disabilities. She also works full time as a Treasury Analyst for a fairly large company.  Somehow it all balances out.

Midwest Machine Knitters' Collaborative logo

The Midwest Machine Knitters’ Collaborative (MMKC) is a Minnesota based fiber guild established in 2011. We envisioned the Collaborative as a way to connect with other machine knitters who like to think (and knit!) outside the box. MMKC provides a forum to promote fun, interest, appreciation, education, inspiration, and camaraderie in the art of machine knitting. We welcome all levels of experience, as this is the best way to learn and inspire. We will all become better knitters through collaboration.  https://www.midwestmachineknitters.org/



Kathy has always been into crafts, but didn’t teach herself to knit until after college. She really got hooked while living in San Francisco when a friend opened a knitting store. To pitch in, Kathy started knitting up fun (and odd) things for window displays, as well as teaching classes. In the last couple of years, she has started designing her own knitting patterns (many of them available for free on Ravelry!) with toys and mittens being her primary obsessions. (she/her/hers)