Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Shoemaker's Child goes Barefoot

As a knitter, I feel that I should be much better prepared for the cold than I actually am. The problem is that most of the things I knit go to other people. On the occasions that I do (try to) knit something for myself, something always comes up and whatever I was making for myself gets dropped. Somebody has a baby, or a shower or a birthday, or they spring Christmas on me again, or, let's face it, I have a short attention span. Some new yarn or pattern will come along, being all soft and pretty and enticing and I'll follow right along after it. I have no shame.

This is why I don't have a matching hat/scarf/glove set. Right now, I'm wearing a scarf that I crocheted several years ago that I lost the matching hat for, (and which, incidentally, has a hole in it), a hat that doesn't match anything that I think my mother bought for me when I was in college, probably at K-mart, and a pair of mittens that I made fairly early on in my knitting career. They came out about two sizes too big for my hands, and were knitted somewhat loosely, so they did absolutely nothing to keep out the wind or keep my hands warm. They languished in a drawer with other mismatched accessories until we moved about two years ago. When I was unpacking, they managed to end up in the laundry. I spotted them as they were going into the washing machine and I started to pull them out, but then just said "what the hell?" and threw them in to see what would happen. It wasn't like I could ruin them. Well, they shrank and felted and they're now about the warmest mittens I've ever owned. So, I wear them, despite the fact that they have nothing whatsoever to do colorwise with my hat and scarf.

I am working on a hat and scarf set. I found both patterns on Ravelry. The hat pattern is called Greenery, and may be the best cabled hat pattern I've ever worked on. The cables start right up out of the ribbing and the crown decreases don't mess with the cables. It pleases my sense of symmetry. My sister in law got one for Christmas and I liked it so much I made another one for myself.

The scarf is called Persephone. The cables don't really match the hat, but I think there's enough similarity that they'll work together. The designer of this scarf is, quite frankly, insane. Brilliant, but seriously, nuts. There isn't a single right side row on this scarf that doesn't have some sort of cross on it. You never just go for a few rows until your next cross like most (non-insane) cable patterns. It's loads of fun to knit, but you have to SERIOUSLY be paying attention. I can't wait to try some more of her designs.

The scarf has actually stalled a bit at the moment, as Baby Knitting has taken precedence (see... told you) but I'll try to get it done soon and hopefully be able to wear the set this winter. I don't know what I'll do for mittens, though.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Get Them While They're Young

My cousin's ten year old was doing something at church with my mother on Saturday and Sunday, so she came to spend Saturday night at our house. I honestly couldn't figure out what in the world we were going to do to entertain this kid. Well, I didn't need to worry, because not too long after dinner she asked me what might have been the most wonderful question I've ever heard.

"Can I knit?"

I nearly cried.

So, upstairs we went to find a pair of needles, I gave her some of the Sugar & Cream that I have left over from the baby bibs and showed her how to cast on and knit. She caught on in no time and sat on the couch for about two hours working her way through a garter stitch washcloth.
Then she discovered the ball winder.

I will admit that I find the ball winder to be ridiculously fun myself, but Kellsey wound every single piece of yarn that she could get her hands on. I finally had to take it away from her and send her to bed. I won't have to wind a bit of yarn for months.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Matthew Jesse

Unless my brother and sister in law change their minds between now and May, this will be the name of my nephew. The Baby Knitting started right after the Christmas Knitting was (mostly) finished. I'm planning to find out exactly how much knitting I can pile on one baby.

I'm about halfway through the Cabled Blanket from Debbie Bliss Simply Baby. I have to admit that I tend to go back and forth a bit on Debbie Bliss patterns. Some I like, some I really don't. This pattern I like, though. It's pretty simple and I like the look of the garter stitch bit in the cable, which you can't really see in the picture, but I can't seem to get it to come out any clearer.

What I'm really, really loving are these bibs. I've been churning these things out for about a week and a half now and there's no stopping in sight. They're really just garter stitch squares and you would think that I would be ready to jump off a roof by now but I'm just finding them adorable. I'm using Peaches & Cream cotton, which feels nice to work with and comes in such great colors that I'm just not getting bored with them. Also, they're small, so they're great for the train. I may have to think of something else to work on tomorrow though. I've used up all the balls in the stash. (Well, except for some pinky sorts of colors, but I don't want to make my brother's head explode.)