now that my eyes have officially been opened to the fact that the twelve days of christmas are upon us, i think i’m finally getting into the spirit of the season (snort—took me long enough).
i am suddenly a powerhouse of efficiency and organization in the gifting department—or at least, what passes for one around here, haha.
hey, it’s state of mind, right??
the working title has been twig and leaf but i’m changing it—i’ll explain about that in the release post.
i love the way the beret turned out; it’s not really huge in diameter (10.5 inches, tops), but it’s a nice and slouchy. the ZYG serenity 20 yarn provides a nice springy fabric without stiffness; the silk content gives the motif some dimension. this one is the bigger size, so it’s not a good fit for me, but it will be perfect on helena, who has promised to model it for us later this week. i may knit another one for myself, but i’m not sure yet when.
i made a couple of tweaks and sent the pattern to proofing on saturday; for those who have been waiting, we should be able to publish it near the end of this week, yay.
the other day, i came across the beginnings of a cabled keyhole scarf in a project bag.
when i say the beginnings, i mean that sometime last christmas season, i cast on for it, knit one row, and then put it in a travel bag, never to be touched again.
you know, some behaviors just defy good sense.
here i had a perfectly delicious 3-hour project in a gorgeous—no, make that luscious—red luxury yarn (spirit trail birte) that’s a dream to knit and for months it’s been hidden away where i can’t see it.
i could have knit this during an airport layover in august or september with time to spare, but did i do it then?? NO. then i noticed that this pattern has been selling very steadily this week and it jogged my memory, so i went looking for it—it will be a great color for almost anyone.
good thing it takes practically no time to make.
anyway, i took it out friday night and sat down with it while we watched TV. saturday i took it over to debby’s and finished it while we visited. i came home and blocked it that afternoon (friends, it doesn’t even require pins; just lay it out and pat into shape), so inside of 24 hours, i had this:
uh, that’s a serious no-brainer in my book.
as one member of our ravelry group put it . . . it takes more time to dry than it takes to knit (good to know!)
i know at least three or four people who would love this.
but the best part??
first, i made it from leftovers that i had on hand from one that i knit last year (so you can easily get two of these from one skein of birte)
and secondly, barb gave me some matching leftovers in the lighter weight sunna yarn to knit some coordinating fine cabled mitts. i haven’t knit a pair of these in several years and i’m enjoying every stitch with this yarn.
i did do one thing right; all of the supplies for both projects were in the one bag, where i kept them all year—i didn’t even have to organize it. i’ll have to remember that one for the future . . . when a brilliant idea hits, put the supplies together—it could save a future holiday.
okay, now i gotta change gears to tell you about my new favorite quick knit obsession—the earwarmer band. another piece that was inspired by my new-ish running habit, which has quickly morphed into what i see as the perfect gift for almost everyone on my list (mostly kids).
i cast on for this with my holda leftovers during the after-high of completing two fartleks in just a few days and proceeded to work one row while i was cooking something (that’s all i remember). i must have put it down when the pot boiled or whatever and it’d been sitting around in that state for over a week when i picked it back up on saturday night while we watched TV.
at which time i became completely engrossed in making this piece happen. i wanted my earband shaped so that it completely covers my ears, but is narrow over my forehead. i have several of these in technical fabrics for cycling and i love them. i wanted something cozier for winter running and walking.
i worked on it til about 4 am that night and got one finished, but when i put it on, i felt the depth and shaping needed some tweaking. so i ripped it back to the point you see above and proceeded to write out a working pattern yesterday afternoon, using more better math to get closer to the perfect shape. last night when it was time to relax and TV, i tried out my pattern.
okay, i’m going to go off a tangent here for just a sec—who is watching homeland???
omg, i may have fallen into its grip just a little, heh. i don’t even try to guess what’s going to happen next any more—i just love it, as much as i loved the killing and for all the same reasons.
alright now, stay on track, hanson . . . i was able to reknit the shaped portion in one sitting and when i put it on, it felt really good.
i waited til this morning to take a thorough look at it in the mirror (never critique your work seriously at 4 am) and i’m still very happy with it, yay. i particularly like the depth over the ears—a little more generous than the store-bought ones i own, it hugs my head nicely around that lower edge; i don’t think any wind is going to slice in there. i’m wearing what i think would be considered the largest kid size—about 16.5 inches around, stretching to fit my 20-ish inch head.
the holda makes a nice, lightweight band, but i could see this knit in a heavier yarn too for even more density on colder days. i’m going to play around with different weights for myself and the kids on my list. lightweight ones will be great for the texas and las vegas families; heavier will work better for the new york families. and if i can get some fingerless mitts knit for some of them, that will be gravy.
now i can knit one in my fig colored holda, too. i’ve got my own matching mitts on the needles as well, which are the epitome of simplicity—just a little texture top and bottom with all stockinette in between. currently, i’m waffling about whether to keep the shaping at the wrist; what do you think? is it necessary? desirable? too much trouble to bother with? (of course, it could just be an option—use it or not).
i’ll work more on those in class today.
and then, because everyone seems to love those keyhole scarves so much, there is this other super-quick project i’m toying with in shibui baby alpaca DK
i always thought that the large leaf lace pattern i used in maplewing would make an excellent keyhole scarf all on its own—it has voluptuous edges and curves—but i’ve been slow in making time to design it. the other day i sat down after class, threw this yarn on the needle, and just started knitting—that’s the best way for me to get things done sometimes.
i love this fjord color for winter—a beautiful blue, so flattering and un-christmassy. not that christmas is bad; i just need a break from red and green after a while and blue is so soothing to the mind this time of year, isn’t it?
i also really love the curling edges; i’m going to have to figure out how to keep some of that and still block it. i can totally see it going two different ways with equally lovely results—stretched and blocked so that it’s translucent and drapey, like large grape leaves or dense and curled at the edges a bit so it’s more dimensional, like fig or acanthus leaves.
decisions, decisions—good thing it’s a fast enough knit to make two; i can experiment to my heart’s content.
alright now, i’ve gotta scurry; i’ve got class later today and before that, i need to edit some photos and release the next pattern; look for it in just a few hours—moth kisses lace cuffs.
and don’t even mention that i didn’t mention david’s sweater—yet.