24 December 2009

Hey! It's a Christmas Stocking!

I started this stocking at least one Christmas ago, maybe two? Finished yesterday while waiting for my car to be inspected. The impetus? My sister told me we had to bring our own stockings for Christmas this year. Thankfully, this one's big enough for the two of us to share, 'cause we've only got the one! Santa's far less picky about receptacles when he comes to our house.

Random big-worsted/small-bulky yarns, size 9 DPNs.

CO 56 sts. knit in the round. Let it sit around for a year if you don't make enough progress for it to be done by Christmas.
At some point, throw a short-row heel in there. It doesn't have to be very good.
At some other point, start decreasing for the toe. Close up the hole when it looks small enough.

Merry Christmas!

17 December 2009

Snail Hat!

Elizabeth Zimmermann's Snail Hat (Rav link) is one I've been wanting to knit for a while (ever since I saw the photo in Vogue Knitting last year, although I have Knitting Without Tears -- it looks so much more appealing on an actual person than it does not on a person)(sorry, I can't find the modeled photo online to link to!). I've also been aware that it's really not flattering for my face shape. And it's kind of a tough item to knit for someone else, because it's so silly-looking and therefore a very personal choice. But it's such an interesting pattern idea...

But then Nido opened. New LYS (actually, a fabric store with yarn, but the owner quickly discovered that there's a huge hungry market for a yarn shop in downtown Burlington), four blocks from my house. I've been popping in, checking up on her progress, giving suggestions now and then on what books to carry, etc. And the owner asked if I'd like to teach a class in the spring. Specifically, she wanted me to teach something that would use the Twinkle Soft Chunky she sells. My mind immediately went to the snail hat. It all clicked -- she loved the idea, and here we are!

So, I knit up a shop sample (pictured)(see? not flattering for my face shape). And my class is on the calendar. And it was super-quick -- although my instincts led me astray for a while, and I was stumped by Elizabeth's genius at first. But I got it all figured out (my usual advice to folks is to trust the pattern and go with it, and I didn't follow my own advice the first three times I started the hat! I was certain there was an error in Vogue's pattern. There wasn't.). And I'm about to bring it over to Nido so she can display it! Woo!

Now, let's hope people actually sign up for my classes. Time will tell -- one is late February, the other mid-March, so I won't know for a while.

09 December 2009

NHM #9

So my friend Aubrey and I went down to Mango's farm on Saturday to pick up our CSA share, and Mango saw us out the window and came running out: "Knitters! Knitters! Come inside and have some tea!" So we did. Then we spent a couple of hours sitting by the wood stove and knitting away. Then she showed us the baby chicks they'd just gotten the day before. (Having a friend with a farm is awesome! It's like having a friend with a swimming pool, only there are cute small animals!)

Well, while I was there, I did a bunch of work on this mitten, got about an inch or two past the thumb opening, and realized that the thumb was in the wrong place -- the gusset started way too soon, and the thumb opening was too low. Need extra rows! So I ripped back to the cuff, and then pouted, as I wasn't quite sure what to do.

Mango to the rescue! She ran upstairs, grabbed a book about Scandinavian knitting, and suddenly I had all kinds of options! I chose this leaf motif because the heart/flower-thingy pattern has leaves also, and this one happened to be a multiple-of-six pattern, which is handy when you've got 60 stitches.

Now the thumb is in the right place (but you can't see it, because I can't get that picture to post), and the mitten is still long enough in the hand. In fact, I did the decrease-y part of the fingers with size 2 needles rather than size 3s, just to cut down on a smidge of length. Cuff is also on size 2s, but most of the hand part is on 3s. All in all, it only took me about a day, maybe two, to knock this one out. Amazing how quickly a mitten knits up when you actually enjoy knitting it!