The longest night

Today marks the winter solstice, the first day of winter, the longest, darkest night of the year, the shortest day. Cate wrote beautifully about it here. We’ll mark the occasion at the Kensington Market Festival of Lights which is a beautiful explosion of all winter festivals.

Today, the glorious high of finishing the blankets has worn off and I’m feeling the first real pangs of concern. (If here we understand “concern” to be an enormous tight feeling in my chest). There are four days…and here’s where I am.


Socks A. First sock done, second sock, heel just turned. These will be finished.


Socks B. First sock done, second sock heel turned. This too is in the realm of possibility. (Really, four days for two half socks is not even special knitting.)


Socks C. I’m sure the problem here is obvious. This one is what may catapult me into Olympic level knitting.


A pom-pom trimming event finished the hat,


and the scarf is…well. The scarf is that yarn under the hat. This may be a little dodgy, but I’m going to distract you with the patten for this very quick hat, good for leftovers. Maybe it will get one of you out of trouble.

Estimated time: 4 hours. (Maybe less. I didn’t time it, but it was fast.)

4.5mm needles and worsted weight yarn (gauge largely irrelevant thanks to the elastic nature of ribbing) fits most average heads.

Cast on 86 stitches and working back and forth, striping as the spirit moves you (or not at all) work 2X2 ribbing:

Row 1: *K2, P2 repeat from * to end, K2.

Row 2: *P2, K2, repeat from * to end, P2.

Repeat these two rows until you have 20cm of knitting. (If you found yourself with an extra hour, you could totally make that 28cm and have a fold up brim, IF you had an extra hour.) End ready to begin a “Row 1”

Decrease as follows:

1st row: K2 *P2, Knit 2 together, repeat from * across to last 4 stitches, P2, K2.

Second row: work all stitches as they appear (Knit knits and purl purls.)

Third row: Knit 2 *Purl 2 together, knit 1, repeat to the last 4 stitches, purl 2 together, knit 2.

4th row: work all stitches as they appear

5th row, Knit 2, knit 2 together across the row, K2.

6th row: Purl

7th row, Knit 2 together across the row, then break yarn and thread through remaining stitches and pull up into a circle. Then use this yarn to sew your seam, and weave in any ends from the striping.

Make a big honking pom-pom and whack it on the top. Wrap.


This is the mittens and hat. (Yes. I know. I know…I know. This is a bit of a long shot, but I really think that if I pull it together I can make it. It’s just not going to be easy. )

Besides all this…there’s a wrap to finish, which, when I am done will be 80 inches, but is currently 12 inches. I have sunk low enough to think that this is completely possible because it’s not due until the 29th. (I can start to feel the crazy around the edges of that one.)

I have obtained a knitting schedule, and am ready to begin the marathon. I have chocolate, screech, nog and a pretty decent grip on the sort of commitment it’s going to take. I would like no mention of how I am really only getting down to brass tacks on the 21st. I prefer (even though there is clearly more than 4 days of knitting in the pictures above) not to think of my self as deeply deluded, but rather…enterprising.