Monday, January 4, 2010

A Generic Greeting: Happy New Year!

The pre-Christmas blizzard gave me time to spin up some bulky yarn for a pair of convertible mitts for my sister.  

Okay, so the yarn is too bulky and wonky to do what I did.  It was one of those gifts where I had to explain why it would be nice to receive.  I also promised to do better next time.  I imagine the mitts will join the ‘archive,’ rather than being used.  At least it’s a nice color and a learning process.  I learned why it’s better to struggle to pick up the stitches than try to knit magic where it doesn’t want to happen.  At least until I become a better knitter and spin finer yarn (finer on several counts).

Here’s Mom’s Malabrigo vest.  I’m so glad I have a ball of this yarn left over to play with.

I knit up a Jacques Cousteau hat in a nice handdyed black yarn a friend gave me.  Snappy little hat.  Wonderfully simple.

Knitting in the New Year: how I spent my last and first hours

In the hours leading up to the changing of the decade, I watched way too many episodes of America’s Funniest Home Videos as I finished a pair of simple black mitts for a guy on the bus I take to work.  I’m happy with them...they reassure me that when push comes to shove, I can produce items which are not overdone or embarrassing for the recipient.  It’s just not as fun during the process, being a person who gets a kick out of the interplay of colors.

When the mitts ended, the videos continued on, and as they did they became funnier.  (The only bubbly drinks I had were Coke and Green Tea Ginger Ale, so it couldn’t have been the influence of alcohol.)  The knitting continued as well, and I got to play with colors once again.  I began the first of two mug cozies, a strip of simple garter stitch with decreases and an I-cord button loop on one end.  

The second I cast on in the dark of a movie theater on New Year’s Day, and when I reentered the world of light I added a butt upon which the mug may sit, a sort of built-in coaster. 

I want to tweak it the next time I make one.  How nice it is to have such care-free, quick, and useful projects that love being knit from your left-over scraps of fun yarn!  Having scratched the itch, I returned happily to Dad’s sweater vest, adding a bit of shaping before launching into the grand expanse of stockinette.

My sister gave me a belated Christmas gift in the wee hours of the new year, one which has a lot of bang for its buck: Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Knitter’s Almanac.  I’m currently poring over the January Aran Sweater.  I'd love to make it, but I don't feel right about the yarn I have, and it's probably not the time to buy more.  Some day, I'm sure.  I do have some lovely light blue intended for a vest, so maybe that will suffice for now. 

May this year bring you many reasons to look back and be glad.

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