Thursday, 4 July 2013

United Knitters of America

Three days ago I posted a selection of Canada-themed patterns in honour of Canada's birthday, and I can hardly do any less for the U.S. Or rather I could, but it doesn't seem politic given that a good 40% of my readers are American. These American patterns proved harder to find than the Canadian patterns. For the latter I just typed "Canada" into Ravelry's search engine and picked out my favourite ten patterns; this search had me typing in every American symbol, icon, slogan and ideal I could think of into Ravelry's pattern search and on Google before I could scrape together enough examples. But I think I succeeded at last, and hope all my readers find something to enjoy in the ten patterns I've selected regardless of their nationality.

Above, of course, we have a pair of American flag socks. This pattern is a free Ravelry download, and was designed in memory of Barbara G. Edwards, a knitter and teacher who died on the Flight 77 crash at the Pentagon on 9/11.

Here we have a Log Cabin Afghan, based on the traditional log cabin quilt pattern. This pattern is a $3(USD) Ravelry download.

I bet it never ocurred to you that you could knit (and felt) yourself a cowboy hat. This pattern appeared in Folk Hats, by Vicki Square.

If you'd like an iconic American hat, but the cowboy hat is a little over the top for you, you might prefer to make yourself a Pony Express Beanie. This pattern is available as a Ravelry download for €3.49(EUR).

Then again, maybe you're not into western American themes at all, but are more of an urban type, in which case you might like the New York State of Mind cap, which is a free Ravelry download.

If you admire the famous New York skyline, but don't want it on your head, the NYC Skyline Afghan might be for you. It is also a free Ravelry download.

If you're neither urban nor western but instead like a touch of the antique in your wardrobe, perhaps the Washington's Birthday Mitts design might be more your cup of (untaxed) tea. This pattern is a $4(USD) Ravelry download.

But then there's always the option of just making something cute that only very obliquely references a favourite American myth. This Rowan pattern for a Cherry Pie Cardigan is not only cute but is also in red, white and blue. Just be sure your little girl knows that the whole cherry tree story was made up out of whole cloth by Washington's biographer.

For an "American as apple pie" reference, you could go with the Apples! design, which is a free Ravelry download. You may want to go the extra mile and add an apple hat to the ensemble.

And then there's this version of the classic American baseball jacket, the Baseball Hoodie, which is available as a Mary Maxim kit in a range of children's sizes.

I just had to throw in the pattern for the official sweater for the U.S. team at the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City because it's the most accomplished design of any I found, though this pattern is now out of print and it will take some determined effort to find it.

And I leave you with a literary example of ingenious Fourth of July-themed knitting:

Laura and Mary had wanted to make mittens for Carrie, but they had not enough yarn. There was a little white yarn, and a little red, and a little blue, but not enough of any colour to make mittens.

"I know!" Mary said. "We'll make the hands white and the wrists in red and blue strips!" Every morning while Carrie was making her bed in the attic, Laura and Mary had knitted as fast as they could; when they heard her coming down the stairs, they hid the mittens in Mary's knitting basket. The mittens were there now, finished....

Carrie put on her mittens and softly clapped her hands. "My Fourth of July mittens! Oh, see my Fourth of July mittens!" she said.

By the Shores of Silver Lake, by Laura Ingalls Wilder.


  1. I found others on Ravelry by searching 4th of July, or Independence day or flag. Lots were free too!

    Have a great day!


  2. Love that skyline afghan, makes a nice change from the red, white, blue theme!

    Also that you quoted Laura Ingalls - aaah... :)