Feral Knitter

February 2023

The bright yellow flowers of the weedy oxalis have taken over our garden after the winter rains, marking the start of spring here in Berkeley. Our weather in on the coast in northern California is so mild that I’m pretty spoiled—a cold snap means the temperature has dropped to 45°! But before you get jealous I have two words for you: earthquakes and wildfires. Nothing is perfect!

I’ve been making progress on my moon series of sweaters: the Ten Moons Yoke Sweater is done and I’ll start writing it up this week; I’m beavering away on the second sleeve for the Bella Luna Sweater and am beginning to believe it might be finished someday! The Sunrise Moon Vest is still a glimpse of an idea…. It’s lovely to be able to focus on designing right now.

Wishing each of you the opportunity to pause and look around at the colors and patterns that make up our glorious world.

Janine ❤️

New News

The Redbud Vest pattern is now available in a digital version! When converting it from the paper version I corrected a few issues and added more information about steeking. If you purchased a paper copy of the pattern you can find all corrections on Ravelry; you can download the steek information here.

Because I’m not teaching this year I’ve reduced the price of the large yarn packs30% off. These packs consist of 12 shades of Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift—I’ve created a number of color ways that are especially useful if you aren’t sure about choosing colors or if you don’t have a nearby yarn shop. I’ll be adding some color ways this month, so check back if you were disappointed.

The Ireland trip is now open for registration! Jillian Moreno and I have worked hard to create a two-week fiber experience that will cover all the bases: scenery, mills, sheep farms, goat cheese, classes, yarn shops, distillery…. I’d love if you could join us!


Wishing you a holiday season filled with love. Treat yourselves and those you meet with generosity!



Are you new to Fair Isle knitting? Let me recommend my two patterns geared to beginners: Dryas Octopetala, a slouchy hat, and the Beginner’s Fair Isle Cap, a small, close-filling cap. Both these patterns include motifs that build in complexity, giving you a chance to build your confidence in carrying two colors at a time.

My approach to Fair Isle knitting is modern and very personal; my goal is to share my deep appreciation for this type of knitting and to help you develop the confidence to plunge into this world of color and pattern.

My newsletter is where you will get the most current information about teaching and travel and new patterns, so please sign up if you haven’t already!


In 2003 I was setting up a Fair Isle color study sub-group of the Seattle Knitters Guild. A non-knitting friend, overhearing the discussion, asked me, apprehension thick in her voice, “Janine, WHAT is a feral knitter?” The name stuck. A feral knitter is someone who loves color knitting, playing with color combinations and garment shapes, and learning about construction and fit.