Mitts for Grandma

About two months before Christmas, my mom decided that my grandma needed fingerless mitts to keep her hands warm during the day – and that I should make them. I decided that Delicato, a pattern I’ve knit before would be the order of the day, and started searching out yarn possibilities. Once my mom decided which yarn she liked best, we ordered the yarn, it arrived…and I avoided knitting them. Around about Thanksgiving I decided I’d better not put them off anymore, and started, completely winging the needle size based on past experience (which worked out perfectly). It was a slow start. As I mentioned in my last post, knitting wasn’t exactly my friend in 2012 and my wrist was bothering me. As Christmas inched closer however, I had no choice so I sat down for a marathon day of knitting–and was rewarded by feeling much better about both the craft and my wrist. (True culprit for the wrist pain is, I believe, the computer–which alas, I cannot completely avoid.) I completed them in just the nick of time, and my grandma both likes and has been wearing them. Win!

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Pattern: Delicato by Anne Hanson (Knitspot)
Yarn: Woolen Rabbit Pandora (merino-bamboo-nylon sock blend)
Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm)

It’s a good thing I enjoyed making these again–my mom has requested a pair from the leftover yarn! I don’t know how quickly I’ll get to them, though–since I last posted, I was offered a full time job (income, yay!) with a long commute (1 hour drive – no public transport option, boo!), so my time will be more severely limited than the last couple years. But they are definitely near the top of the list!

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To Finish Off the Year

It’s been ages ago now (and perhaps seems even longer), but this summer I participated in the Summer ’11 edition of Seasons of Lace. It was fun to knit lace along with others, even if I still haven’t finished Rock Island from the KAL. (Soon, I hope!) But that was summer, and this is winter, so I was very surprised a couple weeks ago to receive an e-mail that I had won yarn in the Resurrection Lace Raffle! Just before Christmas I received this little beauty, a skein of Twisted Fiber Art yarn, Muse base (wool-silk), Warlock colorway, generously donated by Cathy Cate of Hither and Yarn.

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Thank you Cathy! Now I just need to decide what to do with it…

In other knitting news, I successfully finished a pair of Hot Waffles Knits for my brother for Christmas. I didn’t get any pictures, but this:

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is what they look like. Yes, they are exactly the same as my Dad’s Mitts. I think my brother likes them; I know he’s been wearing them already. So that was a success.

Not so successful:

Two of at least three short sections from the middle of my ball of Cascade 220 Superwash. They were only holding on by a single ply, which meant more ends to weave in. It looks like maybe the yarn snagged on a piece of equipment or something. I’ve never had this happen in commercial yarn before (although I have knit with yarn from mom & pop companies that’s been broken and knotted). I’m not overfond of weaving in ends, and in black it’s just torture. So I wasn’t too happy by that, but I bought the yarn so long ago, that there’s nothing I can do about it. (And none of the other balls I bought from the same dye lot had that problem. Weird.)

There is one thing I can do–I swear, no more knitting anything in black that requires seaming or weaving in of multiple ends. I mean it this time!

A Christmastime Adventure

First things first – I finished the shawl on time and my mom loves it!  She was absolutely astonished that I would do such a thing…so I may have unintentionally created a standard for myself which I will never again be able to match.  Opps.   I was able to catch some shoots in uncharacteristic NE Ohio December sunshine:

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Pattern: Wing-‘o-the-Moth (Anne Hanson)
Yarn: Rowan Kidsilk Haze, Color 588
Needles: US 2 (2.75 mm)
Modifications: None, although I did add extra yo’s in the bind-off to make a stretchier edge.
More pictures are on Ravelry.

Now, I believe I promised to share a recent Christmastime Adventure.  Every year, for as long as I can remember, my mom selects some Christmas outing or performance to attend.  We’ve been to see Christmas lights, historic homes decorated for the Holidays, and performances of the Christmas Carol and the Nutcracker.  Of course, over the years it has become hard to find something we haven’t done before.  This year, however, my mom and I were able to find something completely different – Dickens’ Victorian Village.

Apparently about two years ago, some residents of Cambridge, Ohio came up with the idea to turn the downtown into a showcase of Victorian-era scenes, inspired by the works of Charles Dickens.  Over the years, artisans have created dozens of figures and placed them on display over the Holidays.  This year there was also a light display at the county courthouse (in the middle of downtown).  It was a really neat display, if a bit cold (and windy!), and I thought I’d share some of my favorite scenes.

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The Knitter

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Scrooge and Marley

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The Sled Maker

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The Apple Seller

I hope you and yours have all had a wonderful Christmas season and continue to a healthy and prosperous New Year!

a little Christmas knits

I’ve not been one to do the whole “deadline” knitting thing, i.e. birthday or Christmas (or holiday of choice) knitting. That would be primarily because I’m a terrible procrastinator. This served me well through school (term papers, cramming for tests) but doesn’t work so well with knitting. No matter how you slice it, unless it’s a bulky hat on jumbo needles, knitting takes more time than the few hours available to the last-minute crafter. However, in the middle of October, I decided that the perfect thing for my mom for Christmas would be a knitted lace shawl. Given my typical aversion to such deadline knitting, I clearly was temporarily delusional, likely due to excessive studying. I even had a fleeting thought that I could have this shawl finished by Thanksgiving. Ahem.

I did know right away that I wanted to use Kidsilk Haze, so I made my way to the yarn store, and bought enough for a typical lace shawl. The major question was to be which lace shawl. I spent about a week debating triangular vs. rectangular, before settling on triangular and then several more evenings browsing Ravelry before finally choosing to go with my first thought: a Wing-‘o-the-Moth. Moth was my first big lace project, and I knew that it would be doable in the time I had.

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This is the second start. The first was much too open – even for lace. There was also a third (in fact, I don’t think I’ve frogged it yet), which was tighter than this. The third was closer to my shawl in overall size, but the pattern was harder to read. Also, a bit distressingly, apparently I’m an even looser knitter. My first moth was on US 3’s (3.25 mm). This is on US 2’s (2.75 mm). I’m beginning to worry that at the rate I’m going, I’ll be knitting bulky knits on 2’s within a year!

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I will admit, I’m probably not as far as I should be. I’m in a happy state of denial. Or I was before I looked at the calendar today!  It’s looking like a marathon knitting weekend is coming up…