Friday, March 13, 2009

a flock caught my eye

Hi Knitters,
Yesterday I finished my editing and shipped my book pages back off to my publisher. In my sigh of relief I grabbed my needles and a skein of Blue Sky Cotton, emailed Lucinda for her bird pattern and dug in to knit a little blue bird for the cause I wrote about here. It felt good and perfect. 

I had a kind of sign yesterday, at least I took it like that anyway. Let me tell you about it.

Yesterday morning I saw the new Knitty was out. I was casually looking at the new patterns, browsing from top to bottom. Suddenly I scanned down with my eyes to the last pattern and was stunned when I saw this. Sometimes things happen that take your breath away. To see Flock and to be thinking about Cooper's Flock took my breath away. 

To continue on, I glanced at the next pattern in the sequence I had been browsing in before and I saw this. The designer's name is Birdy Evans and the design is called Flit and Float. Lucinda's son was nicknamed Birdy, like that, with a y at the end and thus the reason for the knitted bird charity. 

I emailed Lucinda about this strange coincidence. She emailed me back and simply said, "I got chills." I did, too. I know that things just happen for no reason and often that is the case but what if this wasn't one of those times? I am feeling the need to do a little more for Lucinda and her Birdy today.
Lucinda only wants the donated birds to be knit in Blue Sky Cotton. The lovely Sylvia at Blue Sky has already sent Lucinda an enormous box stuffed with their gorgeous cotton. That is great for Lucinda and the knitters around her but I want to get some of this cotton in your hands if you want to help. 

I happen to have a little Blue Sky Cotton, left over from a project, at my house and I would like to send some to you to knit these little birds. I have 4 skeins of the Blue Sky Cotton in pretty spring shades that I want to give to some sweet bird knitters. Lucinda says you can get 3 birds out of one skein. That means with this yarn we can knit a dozen birds for Cooper's Flock.

If you are interested in knitting a few sweet little birds for Lucinda as a memorial for her son please email me directly to enter (my email address is on the sidebar). Please do not enter for the yarn through posting comments. Here is the thing, I will select 4 people, to send one skein each, tomorrow. In your email, please send me your name and mailing address. Please U.S. mailing addresses only for this one.

Please only enter if you are going to knit birds for Lucinda. We can do a really good thing for a family dealing with a painful loss through our knitting. Okay, hope to hear from you, little bird knitters. I will email you back to tell you if you will receive a skein of yarn for bird knitting. If you don't get an email from me tomorrow assume you have not been selected. I will select the recipients randomly, probably writing names on slips of paper and having one of my kids blindly select the emails from a hat.

Now about the bird I made, to get the pattern go to Lucinda's blog and her email is on the sidebar. Email her and she will send you the pattern via email with an attached pdf file. 

I knit my bird on a set of four US size 6 dpns. I adjusted the pattern very slightly in several places. You don't need to adjust as I did, the pattern is fine and wonderful as is. I almost hesitated posting a picture of my bird because I know I will get questions about what I did but I posted photos anyway because I want people to knit birds. So the following are my modifications. ( it is an easy, easy pattern as is)
Tail: the same
Body: Increase to 28 stitches. Work 16 rounds. Decreased to 18 stitches (the same as in the pattern).
Head: Increased to 24 stitches (8 on each needle). Worked 6 rounds. Decreased to 9 stitches (the same as in the pattern, 3 stitches on each needle).
Beak: switched colors, knit 3 rounds. K1, k2tog on each needle. Knit one round. K2tog on each needle. 3 sts remain. cut and pull through.
Wings: I knit them separately, not picked up as instructed. 
Cast on 15 sts, 5 sts per needle. Join to work in the round.
Knit 4 rounds.
rnd 1: k2, k2tog
rnd 2: knit
rnd 3: k1, k2tog
rnd 4: knit
rnd 5: k2tog
Cut and pull through. Lay the wing flat, whipstitch to the bird's back.
Knit the bird any way you'd like. It's the thought that counts and any bird will be beautiful and appreciated.
I tied an off-white silk ribbon to the back between the wings in case they want to hang it.

Fly away home, little bird.

I hope to get a few emails from anyone interested in knitting a bird in recognition of a beautiful little boy who will continue to touch many.

Have a good weekend, Knitters. I know I am ready for a few days off.
best, susie