Barn Raising Quilt


This is Catherine.  I am blogging today for two reasons:

1) To appease Jocelyn

2) To tell you about an exciting new knitting journey that I am embarking upon.

About a month ago I joined a site called Ravelry.  I. love. it.  It is an online community for knitters and crocheters.  You can search for patterns (there are currently 45,933 available through Ravelry) to download for free or for cheap.  You can keep track of all the yarn you have in your stash.  You can keep track of all your projects for posterity’s sake.  And you can communicate with other knitters around the world.

I have spent a significant amount of time on Ravelry and one day I stumbled across a pattern that took my breath away.  It is called the  Barn Raising Quilt and you make it by knitting different squares and sewing them together in a patchwork of sorts.  The trick is to use sock yarn (nice and thin) that is not a solid color but is variegated (lots of different colors in one skein of yarn).  Then when you knit up the squares, they are a gorgeous swirl of color. The other trick is to knit your squares from the center out in a circular pattern (stay tuned for in-progress pictures to show you what I mean) so that the pattern swirls (I know I used that word two times in two sentences, almost-Dr. Bailey, but my internal thesaurus is broken today and it’s the only one I can think of that really describes what happens).

So this is going to be a looooong project but I’m super excited about it.  I went to our local yarn shop (LYS in ravelry slang FYI, FWIW), Haus of Yarn to peruse their sock yarn selection.  And there… I discovered…


And a specific yarn called Koigu KPPPM: Painter’s Palette Premium.  It is a luscious merino and the color combinations are gorgeous.  See what I mean?

(image from

So I stood in awe in front of the vast selection in the store, gazing at all the possibilities and finally settled on a skein to bring home.  One of the benefits of a LYS is that they will wind yarn into little cakes for you so that they’re easier to knit from.  So they took my hank of yarn and turned it into this:

Lovely little yarn cake. Mmmm.

My hope is to make three squares out of each skein of Koigu.  Yesterday I cast on my first square and, after a rocky start (knitting with double-pointed needles, which are required to knit in the round from the inside out, can be a bear at first) things are moving along swimmingly.  I am loving watching the color patterns develop.  Here are some in-progress shots so you can see what this double-pointed needle apparatus looks like.

Early goings.


My plan going forward is to continue to get skeins from Haus of Yarn but, because they’re not exactly cheap, to buy some online on ebay or through sellers on Ravelry (seriously, that site has everything).  In fact, there is a skein of a lovely mix of orange hues winging its way to me right now!

Because I’m pretty excited about this project, I will try to keep the blogosphere updated so you can see my squares as they develop and then how they come together as a quilt.

It’s a lovely day for knitting in Nashville so off I go!



11 responses to “Barn Raising Quilt

  1. Wow! This project is going to turn out amazing! I love your pictures. So how big do you anticipate the finished size to be? I hope that you continue to post pictures along the way.

    • Hi Lulu!

      Thanks for reading!! I am not sure about finished size. I think it will be pretty darn big (the goal is for it to be a throw that I can snuggle up in). Maybe about 4 ft by 4 ft?? We will see, though. I have read about some people making smaller squares to use as baby blankets. Maybe that will be a future project if I like this one!

  2. Catherine, AS IF I would be so judgmental as to criticize you for using the word “swirls” twice . . . what kind of person do you think I am!? Nevermind, don’t answer that.

    Please keep posting pictures. This is super pretty.

  3. Ooooh. Lurker that I am, I think I found you! What! You have joined the blogging world? Since when? And are you remaining undercover with this??? And if so, why? FYI, I just finished up a beginner’s class at Haus of Yarn where I made the cutest little baby hat. I find that I easily get bored with projects that are too difficult or too lengthy, so the baby hat was perfect. I used double points, made an I-cord, learned to purl (finally) and to knit over. Wow. However, I would like for my next project to be something I could pick up and put down whenever. Maybe the blanket squares might be a good idea. What do you think? Time for dinner to discuss my options…what say you???

    • HI KATHY!!! i’m so glad you found me. This is a blog that my ex-roomies (pre-Trone) and I made a couple of years ago. We are VERY sporadic with our posts but I’m excited enough about this project to bring it to the blogosphere.

      I’m so glad you discovered Haus of Yarn! We should do a class together some time! I love it there. I’m SO PROUD of all the new skills you learned on your hat: using DPNs, i-cord, purling AND increases/decreases it sounds like. That’s a lot of new skills! Now post some pictures on YOUR blog.

      Let’s DEFINITELY make a dinner plan. Send me a message from your fancy new phone. 🙂

  4. Good job! What a snuggly square!

  5. that is also an ultra-handsome head shot of one orange kitten.

  6. How is that possible? I can’t even knit a scarf and keep the same number of stitches per row. Once, I knitted a scarf for Ted. The next time I saw him wearing it, it was mysteriously longer and more even than before. “I changed it a little,” he said.

    Speaking of the hubs, I sent you a thank you note. It was sent back to me. Why would you not want to receive correspondence from me? It made me sad.

    • Haha! I bet you could with lots of practice. Using the DPNs can be super cumbersome but once you get the hang of it it gets to be pretty basic. Move back to Nashville and I’ll teach you. 🙂

  7. Love your choices of yarn…..How big will it be and yes it is tough knitting with double pointed needles…..Beautiful pictures.

    • Hi! Thanks for your comment! I am thinking it will be about 6 by 7 feet but I may get carried away. I’ve finally gotten the hang of the DPNs. The first square I had to cast on about 6 times before I got the hang of it.

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