Cotton Loafer Knit-a-long, part 1

Since we will soon be swept into the pleasantly busy time of Christmas gift making and knitting, I thought it would be fun to do a knit-a-long of a small and sweet project just for us knitters. Over the next two weeks, I'll be posting twice-weekly about The Cotton Loafers from The Knitted Slipper Book. Today there's a companion post over on the STC Craft blog. Be sure to check out that post for more about this project and to enter for a chance to win a materials kit and canvas knitting tote.

Sometimes when I have an idea for a new design, it takes many "drafts" and gnashing of teeth to replicate the image I see in my mind. Other times, the fully formed design practically pops off the needles on the first go-around. The Cotton Loafers were the second type of design, and they are one of my favorite projects from The Knitted Slipper Book. 

The shapely, sturdy sole, the functional leather lacing, the contrasting cotton upper, all the details I originally envisioned are there.  Here are some ideas, colors and images I was thinking about when I started working on these slippers. 

I have always wanted to design something that used jute from the hardware store. Admittedly, it is not the nicest thing to work with, but it makes such a sturdy, rustic fabric that I think it's worth it. Plus, the sole is such a tiny bit of knitting, it's really not bad. I knew I'd need some soft and cool cotton to contrast with the rustic base, and the organic Worsted Cotton from Blue Sky Alpacas was a great fit. I knit my first pair in a rusty red color, but when it was time to knit a sample pair for the book, I turned to a pretty blue that reminds me of well-worn denim. 

I will be posting about knitting the slipper sole on Thursday, so if you want to join in, round up some materials and supplies. The design's Ravelry page has all the relevant details, of course you can also find this information in your copy of The Knitted Slipper Book! I will also be starting a giveaway here on Thursday, here's a sneak peek of the knitting tote I made for the winner-