December 30, 2011
This year's making on my part, was restrained - or at least I thought it was restrained- but when the time came there was something knitted under the tree for everyone. This spectacular event was made possible through the magic of The Long Range Planning Box, into which many an item made its way through the year- just to make Christmas glorious. Ken's socks were finished in July, Joe and my Mum's were knit in March... I knit all year long and into the box they went. This absolutely sensible behaviour greatly reduced the chances that I wouldn't be crying at 3am on Christmas Eve trying to finish a pair of socks. (For the record, it was December 23rd and it was a hat. The best laid plans are still no match for the fickle mistress that is gauge, and the almost freakish way that I'm 43 years old and apparently still can't quite count.) I know I was secretive while all of this came off the ground, so here's the stuff from the final push that I kept quiet.
Posted by Stephanie at December 30, 2011 12:04 PM
First up, Old Joe's annual Christmas socks. Old Joe is the worlds foremost authority on handknit sock appreciation. He takes good care of them, washes them tenderly and with experience, and shows them off to strangers. This is behaviour that triggers further sock knitting in me. We have an arrangement.
Yarn is Regia Strato Color in 5748 (discontinued, I think) needles were 2.25mm and the pattern was my good plain sock from Knitting Rules . I'm pretty sure he liked them.
My sister Erin is a hat freak, and she never tires of getting them.
Enter the Icing Swirl pattern and one skein of Peruvia Quick in Rosa (9186).
This pattern + yarn + hat in just under 2.5 hours, which was a thrilling development.
Amanda (I'm just going to say it) Amanda doesn't like hand knit socks, but like her Aunt Erin, loves hats. Also like her Aunt Erin, she looks really cute in them.
Amanda got a Jenny Cloche, also out of Peruvia Quick, in Blue Nile (9147) - and this would have been super quick to knit, had I not desperately misjudged everything important, and had this had be the aforementioned 3am nightmare on the 23rd.
Still, it's as cute as the vintage button I used on it, straight from my Grandmother's button bin.
Katie's baby got a Puerperium Cardigan a lot like the one I knit for Marlowe before she was born.
I loved that little sweater enough to repeat it. Black Cascade 220, and a skein of colourful Silk Garden that I ripped up and re-arranged to get what I wanted out of it.
This baby is coming in February, and I swear it will be cozy.
There's one more project to show you, but it's so pretty I'm going to give it a whole post of its own. Check in tomorrow, and Happy 5th Day of Christmas. Hang in there.
LOVE love love the hats! I'm a hat freak too.
Adore that cardigan, adored it the first time you made it and again now; but have no clue how you have the patience to take the Silk Garden apart to get the colour sequencing you want. Amazing, and amazingly beautiful.
Wonderful pictures!! I loved the baby cardigan so much last summer that I got the pattern and have made two since then also - the first one with black cascade 220 and a self-striping yarn I got from Webs the first time I went to Stitches!
Happy New Year!!!
Wow! such beautiful knits. Worth the wait to see them; hope the recipients enjoyed them!
I may have to try that sweater for all future great nieces and nephews... Adorable.
Awesome job Steph, I think i'm going to try your idea of knitting throughout the year for christmas, i'm guessing it helped since the 23rd was your last day of knitted gifts. I'm loving that cute baby sweater and i think it's next on the needles.Hope you have an awesome New Years. All the best in 2012.
I am not a knitter, but I love knits and am a big fan of the Yarn Harlot. Your girls made wonderful gifts and I love! the wooden ones. I am a quilter so we really have a lot in common. I am sorry to say we have kinda' returned to the broke years (I am 60 this year) but I always found that my creativity grew when not filtered by money-so looking upon this as a small blessing. Your girls do you great justice as parent and to themselves as beautiful young women. Thanks for sharing your lovely Christmas with us.
I hope you will show us the beautiful sweater you made for yourself. Definitely want to hear your impression of the Shelter yarn. Please do tell...
Old Joe sounds wonderful, and I can commiserate with your Christmas eve crying over knits. It's a personal tradition of mine.
Love that swirl hat! May have to add it to the queue. How lucky you are to have found a good sock recipient. All of my family says they want a pair and then I ask if they will hand wash them and the reply with, "Oh, never mind.". I did give my daughter a pair, though. But then, I know those will get washed properly.
And don't forget to show us the lovely orange sweater you were working on a couple of months ago - I don't think we've seen the pics for that one yet, have we? I've been looking forward to seeing the result, after all that angst.....
I love everything,my fiance R was VERY impressed with the chess set(he is an avid chess player)having always loved working with wood I too am very impressed great job! Now what does it say that I the crocheter finished her knit wash cloth FIRST,I am still working on my crocheted one!
Lovely gifts Steph - and don't worry about the counting thing. I'm decades older than you and still can't count to 2 reliably.
May 2012 be a wonderful year for everybody!
Okay I deeply envy the panache with which Erin and Amanda wear hats. Maybe it's the hats- they look terrific. But the socks are my fave- the classic plain sock shows off the yarn beautifully.
Hey Steph, beautiful family and gifts. Thanks for sharing!
As for the math, my nine-year-old daughter said, "there's three kinds of people in the world, Mom - ones who can count, and ones who can't!"
I really need to set up my own long range planning box. It isn't like I don't do enough knitting for it. Just that my knitting is about 85% for me and 15% for other people.
Every body remembers that men's life is very expensive, but different people need cash for different issues and not every man earns enough cash. Therefore to receive fast credit loans or just college loan will be a proper solution.
I love your blog. I love your family. My Christmas was pretty spectacular too, but my heart melts when I read your posts. Have a great New Year.
I used the same color of Peruvian Quick yarn to knit the Vanessa Headband for my college-age niece. (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/vanessa-headband) She looks just as adorable in it as Amanda does in her new cloche. Thanks for another great year of hand-knits and hilarity. (We're best friends in my head.)
I don't mean this in any way badly about the ravelry page of the Jenny cloche, but I would NEVER have chosen that pattern based on the pictures there, while your picture made me click on the link to go find the pattern.
Is there a reason yours looks less large and droopy and that it looks more like a cloche band? Or does it just fit better?
Your version would be great for my SIL...
Forget WIPs, I'm making a baby sweater! That is so darned cute that my dusty old innards may have even kicked into ovulation.
I needed some inspiration to do some baby knitting; that certainly does the job. Beautiful knits! And go Old Joe!
They're all lovely, but don't forget to show us the knitterly presents you received!
Yep, I had to start a pair of socks the week before Christmas. How could I have Christmas without that last minute stress? A week should have been enough--but it wasn't. Annapurna, from the Book of Socks, is much more difficult than it looks. Most of one sock made it under the tree. Where it joined the other knitted goodies: One pair of Selbuvotter mittens, one Man Hat, and one lovely pullover with a patterned yoke. All were well loved, at least. Thanks to your inspiration, I was the lucky recipient of several knitterly gifts; my daughters had been directed to your gift posts. I love the stripes Joe's socks.
Bet you are going to show us the Gansey.
Seeing Old Joe again reminded me what a great poet he is. I was just thinking about one of his poems that I read some time ago. He really is a profoundly observant and sensitive poet. Does he have anything published?
I really appreciate your willingness to admit your failure or oops. I had amost convinced myself that I really couldn't knit despite the fact that I have taught numerous people and seem to enjoy moving yarn and needles together. But now perhaps I am just in a slump.
Love the Jenny cloche! Must go look that up right now!
Surely you realize that single-handedly you've caused every yarn shop sell out of Peruvia Quick by New Years.
You have inspired me to plan ahead. I'm not going to be the one that everyone knows will be late with all her gift giving. Not this year. Have a wonderful New Year from sunny Sydney.
I love that little cardigan. Thanks to you, I've just cast on my third!
For what it's worth if you ever have a Zauberball going spare: you can (if you enjoy this brand of madness) unskein in little pools it all across the middle of your floor until you find where the color repeats are, and then roll it up into what's essentially a plying ball and then knit it doubled - and it's exactly enough for a little Puerperium cardigan. I've been known to do a little ribbing on the raglan sleeve caps and declare it a short sleeved cardi, if I can't find a spot where the stripe gradient matches up properly!
I am going to establish a Long Range Planning Box.
Those are all lovely, but I particularly love the hats.
Wait, don't you need three hands to knit, hold a baby and drink coffee all at the same time? Or maybe four? Have a splendid New Year's! All good things to you and your loved ones.
Eve from Carlisle.
Lunch with friends, baby and coffee and knitting; and then a visit to Cirque du Soleil! Boy, I'd call that a pretty perfect day! Hope you enjoyed it...
I'm reading your newest book ( what laughs and calming effect it has on me, thank you!!!!) and I'm trying to recall if you have ever shared how you learned to knit, who taught you, etc.
I am new to blogs. I knew I should be reading some and probably writing one, but just didn't get around to it until now. I just finished reading your latest post and instantly felt a connection to you. I, too, have found myself crying over an unfinished Christmas gift at the final hour. This year it was a hat for my sister's boyfriend's daughter...apparently I am also (at the age of 43) unable to count. He he he. I managed to finish the hat and I think she liked it. I can't wait to read your next post!
Wow! Everything is gorgeous! You make the cutest little baby things. It was great that you planned the knitting for the gifts and it was virtually all finished beforehand. Happy 2012!!!
Lovely, lovely stuff as always.
Several years ago I stopped making a list of New Year's Resolutions and vowed to make only three each year -- three that I actually could KEEP. That year, my list was:
1. Walk a little every day.
2. Throw away dried out or used up ink pens and markers on the spot.
3. Buy a large Rubbermaid container and fill it with random knitting projects and thoughtful purchases throughout the year. "Shop" in it at Christmas, birthday and other present-giving occasions.
These are the three best New Year's resolutions I have ever made (and stuck with fervently). They have actually changed my life in small but important ways. I do walk a little each day -- sometimes a lot, but any amount helps. I no longer have the frustration of useless pens in my home and purse. And I always have a big tub of knitting, good books found on sale, and clever little gifts to choose from for the appropriate occasion.
Which brings me to that darling and clever baby sweater. I must be a copycat and make a few. Seems that somebody is always making a new little human, and I have many mini-balls of odd superwash colors and several skeins of black Brown Sheep superwash, and many colored buttons. Baby gifts galore.
I am loving, loving your new book. I am savoring it, one chapter a night, a gift from my husband at Xmas. He also got me some hot new jeans and donated to DWB/MSN for me.
Oops. I meant DWB/MSF of course, not MSN! (posted the amount to you privately).
I love knitting and these are all AWESOME! I have been following your blog for quite some time now and also managed to get your books over here to Germany. Thank you for always inspiring me to keep at knitting.
With love from Germany ;)
Have a really wonderfull 2012, you and your loved ones. Thank you for showing the baby sweater with the diagonal closure a few months ago, like the one today. My SIL has Parkinson and knitting with gifted wool and yarns for an orphanage in Albany (near Italy) is almost the only thing she still can do. Sewing the seams is no problem, but picking up stitches in the round! for the neck is not an option anymore, so she had to knit them straight with buttons on one shoulder. Now, I showed her a little sweater with the diagonal seam and a big frustration she had is over. The straightnecked sweaters were a little too cold for the children, she knew for certain. But with this method the neckborder can be much higher and warmer. She feels much happier when sending them of, knowing there will be warm necks at last. So again, thank you, Stephanie, from me and my SIL.
I think I may have to adopt the long range planning box idea. Genius.
P.S., I made a pair of socks for my daughter using the very same yarn you used for Old Joe's socks and I used your sock recipe. I'm pretty sure that color is discontinued. I've had it forever. I knit socks for my girls a few years ago and Kim said a couple of weeks later, "You know those socks you made for me? Can I have more?" Now every time I ask what she wants for birthday or Christmas gifts, she says, "Socks! I want a drawer full of them!"
"...a skein of colourful Silk Garden that I ripped up and re-arranged to get what I wanted out of it." I have a vision of you tearing and spit-splicing yarn, which raises the knitting bar just a bit out of my reach. The sweater is lovely, so it must have been worth the trouble.
I adore that little sweater! It would be a great knit to have on hand in case another baby is on the way. Not mine, though;)
My sister suggested to me on about December 11th that it would be nice if I knitted my father (who is 92 and in a wheelchair) an afghan like the one I made my Mom.
You can probably tell my sister is not a knitter....
After I finished laughing, I dug out an old UFO - a little square lap quilt I made years and years ago that has been waiting all these years for someone to finish whipping down the edge of the binding. I spent a day sitting with Dad and sewing and it's done.
Everyone's happy and no last-minute stress!
What have you done with Our Harlot?! Finishing everything before Christmas - well, I never. Harrumph.
Thanks so much for another great year of happy knitting inspiration! (I can't believe another year has gone). Wishing you a wonderful New Year, and please continue to keep us entertained with your great posts! You're the best.
Weird. I have a sister named Erin who's a hat freak too. Maybe it's a thing for women named Erin.
Love the hats!
I refer to it as "yarn editing" rather than "ripping up." I've done crazy things with Silk Garden and Kureyon.
I'd love to see that cabled sweater you made out of Shelter. I know it must be beautiful. How did you like the yarn?