Friday, September 19, 2008

September Knitting

September is now well underway, and we are falling into the routines of school/work/activities pretty well. Now I just have to tackle the chaos which has ensued in my house, and try to figure out how to keep everyone in clean clothes, and happy and fed within the new budgetary constraints which seem to have fallen upon us. Things are tight financially and apparently are going to be tight for a while. There is nothing to do but cope with it, and try not to let it get me down. This means cooking more at home, buying less "goodies" such as snack foods and making my own cookies and such more often. It means driving less by running errands on one day instead of every day, and using coupons and buying store brands and things which are less convenient to make, such as dry raw rice rather than the "Minute Rice." It means using the library rather than purchasing books, and brewing coffee at home rather than stopping at "FiveBucks". It is also going to mean a "yarn diet", which I unfortunately started last week with "one last yarn purchase" in true addict fashion. (Very much like my parents in the 1980's...We'll just smoke up this last carton and then we'll quit.)

To justify myself, however, I used the Last Yarn before the big Yarn Diet to start my Christmas Knitting and here it is:


Those are Turn a Square Hats, designed by Jared Flood/BrooklynTweed. I know that Jared is a genius, because these hats are so simple, yet so clever! I showed them to my husband and said "Look Honey! Squares on top of my hat!" and even my non-knitting spouse thinks that is a genius trick. The recipients of these hats are sure to think these are brilliantly-knit hats, even though they only took me an evening each, and I'm pretty sure that I have enough of the yarns left to make two more.

This is the first one I made, and I modified it to fit my husband's largish head, I thought, and it even came out too large for him. I modified it by using size 8 needles, and adding an extra inch before the crown shaping. DH likes it because will be a good warm hat with plenty of coverage for snow-shoveling and cold weather activities, but he's certainly not going to make any sort of style statement with it. (Maybe the statement "my wife knits funny looking hats.") I like the color combination, though, and I will enjoy making a second one.

Specs:
Yarn: Noro Kureyon #149 and Lamb's Pride Worsted in Chocolate Souffle. That Chocolate Brown is rich and beautiful in real life and the Noro is a brown/tan to greyish variegated which I really enjoy and is quite masculine.

Needles: Addi size 7 16" circular for the ribbing, and Clover size 8 Bamboo 16" circulars and dpns. This gauge made the fabric a bit loose for my taste, and made the hat too big around to look as attractive as it should. It's not a total reject, but it could be better.


This is the slightly wonky crown of the grey hat.

Specs:

Yarn: Noro Kureyon #233 and Lamb's Pride Worsted in Charcoal Heather. The Noro ranges from a teal to green and then blues to grey. If I had started from the other end of the ball, I'd have a grey and blue striped hat, which is what I really wanted, so I'll make that one next.

Needles: Size 7 Addi 16" circular and Size 7 Brittany Dpns. This gauge made the nicest fabric, in my opinion.

In a further attempt to deny the half-finished February Lady Sweater that is languishing in my knitting basket, I am making the Yellow Harvest Mittens from the latest Vogue Knitting Magazine. I am using the Blue Moon Fiber Arts Icelandic which my husband gave me for my birthday:

These are a teensy bit snug on me, so if I do them again I'd use size 9 needles, instead of the size 8's I am using. They can't be frogged, though, because this yarn wants to be felted so much that it somehow bonds itself to the other stitches as soon as it's knit. Even tinking back 3-4 stitches is some hard work.

I love the yarn, and I enjoy the pattern, but together, not so much. I'll finish them and wear them with pride, but I do not think they are going to wear well, and I would recommend that you save your Icelandic for another project, and use another, more spun, less felty yarn for this nice pattern.

I'm off to try to corral some laundry, find the floor in the family room and wash some dishes. Maybe if I hurry, I can still have time to knit....

1 comment:

Hege said...

I have those hats and mittens on my list too ;)
Yours are great! I might knit up some hats for christmas presents.