One of the projects is actually two: baby blankets for twins. Did I mention I am never knitting baby blankets ever again? I'm about ten rows away from finishing this thing and I should be able to send them off tomorrow. I found out a few days ago that the babies were born September 19th (boys), and what with winter setting in and all, they'll be needing some warmth. Although I'm sure Qualicum Beach isn't nearly as cold as it is here.
It's been getting so cold here at night! I wake up to frost on the grass! I think it gets to about 4 degrees. We got home from a dinner party in Tofino last night, then Dan had to go do a boat at 10pm. I went to bed about an hour later. We hadn't had the fire going in the house since the day before so the house was cold. Once I realized I couldn't sleep because I was cold, I got up (now it's midnight) and got a fire going. Started knitting a hat.
O no. Well I can justify this one, actually. See, I knit this same hat with this same yarn last month and I have been meaning to write down the pattern because customers have been asking. Only... well, I didn't make any notes with the first one. So I just eyeballed it and went from there. Lessons learned: the first hat was probably done with a 6mm needle, last night's hat was 7mm. I had half a yard of yarn left over (very efficient, really) but it is still a bit on the big side. I think I'm going to mess with the math a bit more because, it is beret-like, it has increases and decreases which have to be strategically placed. At any rate, I brought home yarns in all the colours the shop has (don't tell Dan. I get a very generous discount at the yarn shop and gosh it was hard to resist) to test out this pattern. I finished the hat this morning and will probably cast on for the second test hat (really the third now) with the math revisions. I want to be able to knit them on 7mm needles because I think it looks better. 6mm works with the pink variegated but the other colours are solids and needs to be not so tight.
The whole point of writing down this pattern will be something like 'free pattern with purchase of yarn' but really, I have to cut my designing teeth somewhere. It might as well be something that is easy and not too expensive.
Some time ago I started Brenda Dayne's Brother Amos Hellfire Lace socks with Malabrigo. Soon after starting, I totally lost my sock mojo. It's too bad because I really want some new socks; I started a 12 Socks knit-along and only got the first month done (three months behind now); I promised a pair of BMW socks to my boss at the fish job for which I have the yarn; I have some really nice/interesting sock yarn to knit with if only I could be interested.
But here's the thing: socks take 40-60 hours to complete. This hat that I started/finished in the last 14 hours? I finished it in 3 hours. Very gratifying.
When I was in Kelowna, we happened upon a Chapters. Where I live now is a two-hour drive away from any large book store, so seeing a Chapters was like a rainstorm after a drought. I managed to get away with only one knitting book but it is a good one. It's called Knitting 24/7. I think I would knit almost every project in the book. Indeed, I have yarns for several of these projects (though some of these only recently acquired...). One of the first things I have wanted to knit from this book is a hat called Spiral Tweed Cloche.
I made the Brattleboro hat (also a cloche) from the most recent Interweave Knits Magazine from Malabrigo I bought in Portland last year. I wear it all the time and get comments on it just about every time I wear it. In fact, yesterday when I was working at the yarn shop, a woman walked in and said "Cute hat! Is that the Brattleboro hat?" "Why yes it is!" I said, delighted she recognized it. We were instant friends and are now Friends on Ravelry.
I really like the Spiral Tweed Cloche pattern. It can be made from one skein of most worsted weight yarn. It is an easy pattern and will, I'm sure, knit up quick. I'm planning to make a few out of different kinds if yarn. So while I should have spent my knitting time earlier to day finishing the aforementioned baby blanket, I cast on for this hat.
It's fine. Everything will be fine.
I called this post "getting organized" because today was the day I had set aside for cleaning/tidying/organizing my craft room. It wasn't that bad, but it had become a dumping ground for irrelevant stuff. You know how that happens. I'm not 100% where I want this room to be but now I know where things are (i.e. where they are supposed to be) and I have a much better sense of how many projects I have to work on. By re-creating this space in here, I can come in and work away at my many projects.
Speaking of which...
O dear. Well I hate to say this but not including today there are only nine Sundays until Christmas. Now I know that we are all annoyed when Christmas stuff starts coming out in stores before Halloween, or even before the Back-to-School frenzy has subsided. But as crafters and artists, if we want to make hand-made gifts for all the people in our family and perhaps a few friends, then we must get a head start.
Fifteen family members. That's a lot. I think I'll be adding Mid and Eddie to that list - because until now we have only been exchanging cards, I feel our recent reconnection requires I step up my game. They deserve it, after all.
A couple of the things I made for Christmas last year were big time-consuming projects, there rest knit up in less than a day. I have already done my big project for one person and will get going on the rest. There is no way that I will have a repeat of last year - up until 3am on Christmas eve to finish the interminable project... No. This year, no matter where we are, I will have my Christmas gifts done weeks ahead of time so I can spend December socializing, baking, decorating, and enjoying the season.