Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Little Things

Last week I finished a sweater. I know what my next 2 sweaters are going to be, unfortunately, I don't have yarn for either of them, so I am waiting (waiting to go to a yarn store to order the yarn for one and to go to another store to pick up the yarn for the other). I don't think I will have to wait that long before starting my next sweater, but clearly I need something to work on while I wait, and so, the little things...

Winter approaches in New England and already my hands are chilled, both inside and out. I have a perfectly acceptable pair of wristwarmers, but they are about a year and a half old, so, clearly I need a new pair. I had 2 skeins of Malabrigo yarn that I originally planned on using to make a pair of Urban Necessities mittens. That plan was put on hold last year when I made Eunny's Anemoi mittens and discovered they couldn't keep my hand warm. I figured that if a fair isle densely knit mitten couldn't keep the fingers warm, no mitten would. My Malabrigo languished...

Then, last week, after extensive IM'ing with K, I decided that I HAD to make myself a pair of Hurry Up Spring wristwarmers, unfortunately I didn't have the pattern, but I DO have Barbara Walker's Second Treasury of Knitting, which had a stitch pattern that reminded me of Hurry Up Spring. With the stitch pattern in hand I started my mitts. I then tore because they were way to big. Time to switch down to size 2 needles and start again. This time the sizing was perfect. I knew that I wanted my wrist warmers to be very long, reaching nearly to my elbow. I also knew that I wanted them to be close fitting, so I did some decreasing for my wrist, and increased again for my hands. I did some final decreases around the finger area so that there wouldn't be that annoying gap near my fingers. The fall low over my fingers, barely reaching the middle three fingers at all. This leaves my hands free to type (and perhaps makes it so I can knit in these too).

With 2 wristwarmers done, I still had a skein of Malabrigo, and still no sweater to start, so I moved on to other accessories. I picked up a copy of the Holiday IK and decided that I would try a Koolhaas Hat with my Malabrigo. The hat wouldn't really match the wristwarmers, but would coordinate. The hat has a nice fit and will probably work very well at keeping my head nice and warm this winter. I don't know if I got gauge with the hat, but I do know that the hat fits, so I figure that my actual gauge isn't important.

Last night I finished the hat and still had about 1/2 of a skein of yarn left. What to do? Well, since I had a hat and wristwarmers something to keep my neck warm seemed like the logical next project. I knew that the 1/2 skein wouldn't be long enough for an actual sweater, but I decided an ascot would be right. I flipped through the Holiday IK and settled on the Huckleberry Ascot, with some modifications. The pattern called for about 200 yards of yarn, if I was lucky I had maybe a hundred yards. The ascot is knit along the long edge, so the obvious modification was that it wouldn't be as wide as the pattern directed. I decided that I would just keep knitting until it looked like I was about out of yarn and then I would bind off. The next modification was the elimination of the bobbles that decorated the short sides of the scarf. Bobbles just eat up yarn and I didn't think that the decorative effect was necessary. I knit this up using size 7 needles and the Malabrigo creates a dense warm fabric that feel wonderful against my skin, so this little ascot will probably also get much use this winter.

Now, I just need to look at my UFOs for other small projects to keep me busy until my next sweater...


Anonymous Lissy said...

I love the explosion of Malabrigo creativity and goodness. I want to make that ascot, too, and not just cuz it's purple in the magazine!

4:49 PM  

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