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Dear Ann,

I don’t always knit so hard that my shoulder gets janky, but when I do, it’s because I just can’t help it, because the project is too compelling. Can’t stop won’t stop. Apart from a mild case of arm oochiness, being this deep into the zone of a project is my favorite feeling. I love knitting, Ann! Knitting is just the best!

That’s how it’s been with my Stepping Stone Throw. There is no other knitting project for me right now. I have been knitting it on the subway, in the car, in bed, and while swaying back and forth in front of my new stand-up desk. (I am possibly the last person to defer getting a standing desk until this far into work-from-home pandemic life; mistakes were made.)

The Stepping Stone Throw ticks a multitude of my wild enthusiasm boxes: it’s modular, seamless, colorful, memorizable, and rhythmic, and the simple stitch patterns change often enough to keep me entertained and engaged. It is going so fast that it feels like riding a ride—exhilarating.

Fun fact: it will block to an immaculately flat surface. For now, I’m enjoying the rumbly ride.

As people witness my progress, they keep exclaiming over how fast I knit.

I’m a thrower—my knitting style is called English or American, and it’s not known for speed. The truth: I’m progressing quickly simply because I’m spending so darn many hours knitting on it. In the name of Science, and transparency, here are some data points for you.

Stepping Stone Throw: By the Numbers

With the help of my phone’s stopwatch, here are some knitting times.

Each base triangle and end triangle: 28–29 minutes of knitting

Each rectangle: 60–70 minutes, depending on the stitch pattern. The stockinette-based rectangles, such as the striped (colors: Whisper and Navy) and ladder (Leek) patterns, go the quickest. The broken rib (Wintergreen) and 3 x 3 rib (Merlot) rectangles take a little longer because of switching back and forth from knit to purl. (If your knitting style is continental, is ribbing faster? I would think so, but please let me know.)

Atlas yardage per solid-color row of rectangles: 1 skein for tiers that have 5 rectangles. 1 skein plus about 2 or 3 yards for tiers that have 6 rectangles. (Looking at you, 3 x 3 rib rectangles in Merlot.)

Number of ends to weave in per single-color tier: only 2, unless you needed to crack into a new skein for 2-3 yards to finish the last rectangle in the tier, in which case you’ll have 4 ends to weave in for that tier, and you’ll be kind of mad about it.

Number of ends to weave in per 2-color tier: 22. (Could I avoid a bunch of these by carrying the color-not-in-use up the side of the rectangle instead of cutting it? Yes, but I chose to cut and weave.)

Amount of fun I’m having: incalculable.

Ask me anything about knitting this fantastic throw! Better yet: join me, I would love the company. Find the Stepping Stoners (!) here in The Lounge.



P.S. Guess where I am right now? In your spare room in Nashville, getting ready to jump in the car with you and head Alabama-ward for adventures in the wonderful world of Alabama Chanin. You know what that means: road knitting time! Look for progress updates on my Stepping Stone Throw on my Instagram.


Note: Kay’s Stepping Stone Throw colors are Navy, Wintergreen, Merlot, Whisper, and Leek, available as the Bold colorway of the Stepping Stone Throw bundle, priced at 10 percent savings off the single-skein price.


  • AL CHANIN! Have so much fun, you two!!

  • I had a bad experience early on with a “pick up and knit” section in a scarf. To this day it scares me. Does this blanket require that skill set?

  • It sounds to me as if your oochy arm needs a dose of Carson Demers PS I hope Ann is driving.

    • Right? And yes, Ann is driving.

  • ALABAMA CHANIN!!!! Now that is one road trip I would love to take! Have the best time!

  • I love how years and years of knitting does not make me tire of it – like you describe, a new project comes along and it’s just as exciting as it was when you started knitting. I’m a continental knitter (I started English but as a lefty, charts never worked out). I still purl slower than I knit.

  • What length cable are you knitting on? That looks like a long/wide blanket! Love the colors, especially Leek;)

  • Paragraph 3 is right on. I find this project addictive like sock knitting. Tired of knitting a stockinette leg? Don’t worry; you’ll soon be doing a heel turn that will keep you engaged for a short while, then on to mindless knitting again. In the case of this blanket, finishing a block gives me that sense of accomplishment, then on to the next. And Atlas feel so good…

  • Oh, what fun! Have a blast in ALABAMA!!

  • I also am a thrower. I “taught” myself to knit Continental on a garter stitch baby blanket las summer and it did help the shoulder. But I will continue to purl English style. Give it a try!

  • So, do the two of your trade off driving so each has some road trip knitting time?

  • I love knitting too! My non-knitting friends just don’t understand. I love spending the whole day knitting (when I can), and my shoulder is not too happy about it. I made that same road trip with knitting friends – such a fun weekend!
    And btw, I’m a continental knitter, but I don’t think that helps with speed. Purling involves fewer moves, but speed requires a “flicking” skill set that I can’t seem to master.

  • Sounds irresistible

  • Thelma & Louise roadtrip action for the win! Have the best time!

  • Ha! I just bought a standing desk last weekend. Dueling for last place. Very interested to see that throw become flat.

  • Love your throw! And I’d love even more to be a mouse in your suitcase on the way to Florence! Happy stitching!✂️

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