Skip to content

Glory be! It’s time to start knitting wooly things! We’ve had it up to here with heat and humidity. Dig the giant tea ball out of the back of the kitchen drawer: we are mulling cider, people!

Just in time, MDK Field Guide No. 8: Merry Making is here.

For some of us, knitting hats, mitts, and cowls is a leisurely pursuit. We want to give nice gifts, of course, but most of all, we want entertainment.

For others, the annual knitting of perfect small items is undertaken with the utmost seriousness, and perhaps a spreadsheet. We are the ambitious gift knitters.

We designed MDK Field Guide No. 8: Merry Making to amuse both types of knitters. We knew it would take a designer with a special flair for merry making to come up with designs that would be intriguing knits, and also be a blast to knit in stacks.

And we knew that designer: Thea Colman, of Baby Cocktails patterns fame.

Knitters count on Thea’s patterns to combine classic, casual style with the knitterly details that make a project fun.

A Peek at the Projects

One of the most skilled merrymakers we know, Thea took to heart the idea of designs that can be made quickly, easily, with enough variation that they never get old, and in lots of sizes.

And to really make this fun, we have brought in four yarns brand new to the MDK Shop, from yarn makers who are really crushing it: Julie Asselin, Neighborhood Fiber Co., Jill Draper, and Shalimar Yarns. The mood is lush. The vibe is delectable. Read on, beloved knitter. So much to tell you!

Appleseed Mitts

We hereby anoint you a Johnny Appleseed spreading fingerless mitts throughout the land. In the case of these decorative, becuffed mitts, making them is fun, with an addictive little purl twist stitch.

This is Jill Draper’s Windham, a worsted weight merino, spun in Vermont, hand dyed in the Hudson River Valley, in nine rich colors.

Appleseed Coasters

Are mitts a bit more than you have time for? Sometimes we want to knit something small, yet useful and fun. When this mood strikes, swatch up a set of Appleseed Coasters. All the fun of that purl twist stitch, in a tasty little rug to slide under your coffee cup.

This is Jill Draper Windham, made with love and all the care in the world. Your beverages will thank you.

Slip-Stitch Cap

So fast, this hat. It’s partly because of the yarn: Neighborhood Fiber Co. Studio Chunky lives up to its name, and big stitches mean fast knitting. But it’s also a fact that slip-stitch colorwork, in which only one color of yarn is worked at a time, actually speeds up your knitting. (SCIENCE.)

Do human heads even come in six sizes? Well, this cap does. This could be the hat you knit for four generations of the family. Please send us the group picture!

Here, Neighborhood Fiber Co. Studio Chunky makes these hats a blast to knit. The glazed, shifting hand dyes of Karida Collins never fail to dazzle.

Stranded Diamonds Hat

Let’s say you want to whip up a quick hat, but you’re fancy, so you want to do a spot of real stranded colorwork. The Stranded Diamonds Hat is the hat for you, with its clean, graphic, and vaguely nordic two-color motif. (And a pom pom. We live in a great age of pom poms.)

This yarn, Shalimar Yarns Enzo Aran, is a revelation to us. So happy to have it in the MDK Shop. Kristi Johnson custom mills all her yarn bases, so this blend of merino with a dash of cashmere and nylon has a unique, lofty feel to it, and a gentle luster that is absolutely gorgeous.

Chalice Cowl

The fun-to-knit chalice-shaped cable is the star here. Its unusual, figurative form is deep and chewy, and stands out against the thick garter-stitch background. It’s reversible, so it looks good no matter how you wear it.


We welcome Julie Asselin to the MDK Shop. This is a brand-new yarn for her, Douillet (French for “cozy”), a lofty single-ply delight of a yarn, made in Quebec.

What’s Next

We appreciate the support of all y’all, our readers and customers, as we follow our knitterly curiosity in many directions through our Field Guide series. We love doing this, and we could not do it without you. These little books mean a lot to us, and we are excited to share Thea’s patterns (and an original cocktail recipe) with you.

Please take a look at MDK Field Guide No. 8, and join us in this endlessly entertaining knitting. There’s fun ahead! Stay tuned for an epic giftalong/knitalong/funalong. And of course we’ll be telling you more about these special yarns and their makers in the days to come. It’s all very . . . merry!

With a new season on the way, we have a feeling that this kind of  knitting is just the thing we all need.


Kay and Ann


  • So nice! I’ve had her Dark and Stormy in my queue for years. These are achievable. Thanks for another brilliant book.

  • This looks so fun! Skipping off to the shop now to order my copy. Fa-la-la-la-la….

    • Done! Can’t wait for it to arrive!

  • Love. Every. Single. One.

  • Thea is simply the best designer! I could happily knit every one of her patterns (I’m trying, but might not live long enough! She is hard to keep up with!).

  • Love it

  • I LOVE EVERYTHING! I am now in the mood for hot apple cider and chunky knits and lots of pom pom hats. I’ve been wearing the same fingerless mitts for more than 10 years now so I think it’s time to knit up a new pair!

  • Something wonderful this way comes!

  • Woohoo!

  • I’m in! New Field Guide new yarn. Mr. Postman look and see is there a package in your bag for me…

  • Huzzah! Looks awesome, congratulations. Also, I NEED A GIANT TEA BALL. Heck with cider, I am 100% about the mulled wine. Red and white. So good. Sangria of the wintery north, glühwein. And Knitting, balm for the soul.

  • love the patterns, and really want to try the sangria!

    • I’ve had fun just gathering the ingredients!

  • I want to make the sleeveless sweater she has on. Is the pattern available?

  • can’t wait for the knitalong. I wonder, if you double the stitches and knit in the round, if the Appleseed coasters could become Appleseed coffee (or tea) cup sleeves? Oh yeah and now toddling off to order my Field guide #8 to round out my collection.

    When you get to 10, how about a cardboard sleeve to store them in?

    • Love the cozy idea. Everything should have a cozy. And stay tuned, we love that sleeve idea.

      • The sleeve idea is awesome!

  • Is any of this yarn superwash? It seems like that would be necessary for hats and coasters, at least.

    • Yes, the two hat yarns are superwash or blends with superwash. I have plenty of hats and coasters in non superwash yarns, though, but then I never machine wash wool regardless of its superwash status….

  • I am so excited! I have several plane rides in the next 2 months that will need nice traveling projects! Score! Thank you!

  • Super fun, I love that giant turtle collar on the cabled vest!

  • Love that two of the yarn suppliers are from Maryland! Love these projects!

    • REPRESENT! We love it too!

  • So Fantastic!!! 😀

  • So beautiful and so much fun!!! I’ll be ordering mine soon! Love love love!

  • Love these ideas. Will order now. Not sure where Thea is exactly, but hope her home is safe from the crazy fires tonight.

  • Looks like fun – hats, mitts, and coasters all around.

  • Is there an error in the Coaster pattern? Row 5 in the Cable Pattern seems to have an extra p2 before the *1/2/1 RPT. Or it could be me.

  • Beautiful projects

  • OK so I feel silly asking this, but just got my MDK Field Guide 8. On the Slip Stitch Hat, am I supposed to knit with both colors at the same time? I haven’t done this, and it only says cut color B . at some point. I’ve never knitted alternating two colors before . Help!

    • Search out some You Tube videos on how to run the colors at the beginning of those rows. You basically attach the first color change as you normally would, then with both strands of color, work one at a time. The video should show you how to move one color over the only there at the start of each new new color. Much easier to watch than explain. It’s really very easy to do once you watch a video.

  • HELP! I have been workibg on the Slip Stitch cap from Field Guide No8 and the pattern is not coming out as shown. I have restarted this 5 times. The pattern is horizontal, I’m not getting the lovely vertical pattern. I wish I could attach a picture of my results. I have been diligent in following the 4 round color pattern on page 25 of the field guide.

Come Shop With Us

My Cart0
There are no products in the cart!
Continue shopping