November 2005 Archives

Small Beaded Things

Lately, I seem to be having a hard time focusing on larger projects (poor Liberty! I feel very neglectful). When I start thinking about something new, I ignore anything that looks like a sweater or a big shawl and go directly to smaller things. While doing my cleaning of a while back, I unearthed a small project (and I do mean small) that I had picked up a couple of Christmas seasons ago while in Ann Arbor.

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Black Beaded Bag/Amulet

Size #0000 metal needles. Hmmm. Sounds interesting. And I even have the needles. A gazilion small beads and the opportunity to lose them everywhere? How could I resist? A kit that *actually* includes *all* the parts you need to complete the project? Woohoo! Let me at it.

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Seed Beads in Close Up

I have to admit, I can't work on this for very long without getting a little crazy, so I just pick it up every now and again when the shinyness of the beads overwhelms my fear of knitting with black string on itty bitty needles. I'm a bit surprised at what a nice effect you can get from grouping beads together and how the process works. It's actually not hard at all, just a bit time consuming to be moving a lot of beads around.

Going in Circles

Lately, my projects are leaving me with not so much to write home about, or rather, to write to the blog. The second of two socks progresses and I'm continuing to go around and around on Melody, which I am beginning to think of as the "infinite tube". Even after a bunch of knitting, it still doesn't seem to me like there has been much progress made on the size of that yarn ball.

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Melody in the Round

I figured this picture is justified by two things: 1) showing off the lovely colors in this colorway and 2) the fact that it is almost 70 degrees here in Chicago, and this weather is so unseasonal, that if I didn't take advantage to get one good outdoor knitting picture in, surely I would not be rewarded with any more such weather. So out I went with camera and project in hand.

I love this yarn up close as well, even though the more blue cast in the upper picture is much truer than the greener cast in the closeup.

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Melody, Up Close and Personal

Only a million or so more yards to go. Maybe the next project I start needs to be a little less circular. Hmmm...

Even though I know blocking is a good thing, I am always a bit surprised at the incredible impact it can have, even on a simple piece like a hat. One dinner plate and a steam bath later, my multi-color hat goes from being something of a beanie to the beret with a little flair that it's supposed to be. No matter how tempting it might be, it's these moments that remind me that a garment is only finished after I've blocked it.

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Mais oui, c'est moi dans ma beret tricot!

Forgive my rudimentary language skills -- this little beret brings out my French side (and to be fair, I do have one -- my mother's family, the DuValls, arrived in the United States right about the time of the French Revolution). Why? Because I have finally found a hat style that I can wear and look good in. How is it that I never, before today, actually tried on a beret? For some reason, I have been convinced that I would look awful in one. When I put this little hat on, I elicited an unprompted Wow! That's really cute! from the husband. Clearly I must be onto something.

Yesterday I promised a few more details about my new chapeau. First off, the design and pattern for the hat are taken from Anna Zilboorg's 45 Fine & Fanciful Hats to Knit. Since I'll be reviewing this book soon at Two Friends Collect Books, I'll just be brief and say here that I find this to be a lovely and inspiring book and there's no doubt that I'll be going back to it soon. This is the very first beret design in the book -- I looked through the 4 different patterns and liked this one the best. And there's not much tricky about it except the few rows towards the top that have three colors in them.

For color, I was motivated by what I could find in my worsted weight yarn collection (I'll admit that I did browse through the most recent KnitPicks catalog, but decided to stay faithful to my desire not to expand a my stash -- of course, that didn't stop me from splurging on several nice 16" Addi Turbo needles for the project... I can always justify new needles). I actually have a nice collelction of Cascade 220, including some nice felting left overs that I already knew would blend fairly well. Initially I was only going to use two colors in the hat, but I liked the balance of 4 colors in the design I picked. I was surprised at how challenging it was for me to pick 4 colors that I thought went together. 2 is easy, 4 really starts to stretch the color wheel my brain a little bit. The 4 colors I ended up with?

The light green is 9460 -- it's actually a heather with a bit of yellow and grey in it.
The lavender is 9324 -- also a heather that pushes the purple to the bluer side, but goes well with green
The pine green is 9448 -- this is a solid green that I chose as a darker version of the same green in 9460
The deep purple/magenta is 8885 -- this was my biggest leap out onto a limb, it's not really in the same family as the lavender, but I wanted one bright, almost warm color that would pop a little bit.

I wanted a set of colors that went together, had a little sophistication but also had a little pop since my main winter coat is a long black number, I don't mind dressing it up with a flashy hat or scarf. I like to think that my first effort at color selection isn't so bad. Green and purple is a little unusual for me, but that's what happens when stash dictates selection, I guess. The scary thing? I actually was wishing that I had a little yellow to throw into it... probably a good tthing I didn't have any such color in my stash.

A couple of folks asked about the yarn guide that I mentioned yesterday. It's actually a very simple (and inexpensive) little device from Clover. If you want to get a closer look at it, click here (I'm not endorsing this store, they just had the best pictures I could find on short notice). Clearly this device is not going to be very useful if you do your two color knitting with both hands. To be honest, I'm not sure how helpful it will be to those of you who carry your yarn in your right hand, but it works like a charm for those of us who are incapable of figuring out how to carry yarn in our right hands. ( If you're an English style knitter and you've tried it out -- I'd love to hear your experiences.) I'm still not incredibly fast with it, but it takes away the incredible frustration of tangled yarn that I had encountered every other time I'd tried to tackle a stranded knitting project. And it makes working with three colors pretty easy, too!

The blocking is the best part of this project however. When else would you get to use one of your favorite dinner plates to shape a garment? The beret is fit over the plate and then steamed to get the wool convinced to give a little on both the top and on the sides. It also helps to even out the stitches a little bit and makes the final product a little more finished looking.

Not sure where I will go next with the two color knitting. I'm not feeling quite ambitious enough to take on a sweater yet, but I can certainly imagine a pair of mittens or fingerless gloves in a lighter weight wool.

Oh -- and if you want to see another version of this beret, click on over to Jonathan's blog and take a look at his rendition of the project. Jonathan's not too far down I-290 from me in Oak Park. Must be a multi-color beret knitting vibe going on in the Chicago metro area!

P.S. Tomorrow my best buddy Julie is having surgery. Fortunately it's minor, but I don't think any surgery is ever fun. If you have time click on over and send her some good wishes for a speedy healing process!

Not So Much to Say Tonight...

... but if you want to find out more about Anna Zilboorg's 45 Fine and Fanciful Hats to Knit... I've updated Two Friends Collect Books with a review.

While you're there, you can also check out the two reviews that Julie posted recently -- a children's book and Pam Allen's Scarf Style!

20 (more) Things About Me

Morgan tagged me for this little meme... awhile back I was doing the 100 things about me in small chunks. Seems like a good time to see what else I can tell you. Forgive me if some of these have come up before.

1. I am more or less painfully liberal when it comes to political views.
2. The only protest I have ever participated in was in college where they were going to move the tennis team from Division 1 to Division 3. Yes, I went to a school with a rather well-to-do demographic.
3. I am terrible at getting on the phone. But I will send email any time.
4. The smartest thing I ever did was marry my husband.
5. I will stay up all night to play a computer game. Or finish a book.
6. I have a bean bag frog, a molded plastic frog, a frog squeaky toy and a Beanie Baby cat (Pounce) sitting on my 21" monitor at home.
7. I am trying to grow a Giant Sequoia in a pot on my back porch. I promise never to plant it in my postage stamp sized back yard.
8. I would rather not have coffee if it isn't good coffee. I will almost never turn away a good skim latte.
9. I don't like horror movies.
10. If I could be a teenager again, I'd try to be nicer to my younger brother.
11. I really like being in my 30's. I can honestly say I wouldn't want to go back to being in my teens or twenties. I feel like the older I get, the better life gets.
12. I can tell the difference between Polish and Russian but I can't speak either language.
13. I am stubborn, impatient and goal oriented. I am not a perfectionist, but I have reasonably high standards for "good enough". I have a strong sense of what I consider ethical but I am not at all religious.
14. My favorite jewelry involves black pearls. I would rather have a pearl than a diamond. I wouldn't say no to a little bling-bling, but when it comes to presents, I would usually rather have consumer electronics than jewelry.
15. Sometimes I regret not doing my graduate work in the history of science.
16. The only other "languages" I speak are computer languages. I'm modestly fluent in Perl and Java, and can hold my own in C++. I wish I had my husband's understanding of how to use pointers.
17. Someday I would like to own/run my own business.
18. I am not happy unless I have the latest in computer mouse technology -- I currently have a Logitech MX1000 Cordless Optical Laser Mouse. I love this mouse!
19. I am completely disturbed by the fact that the Kansas Board of Education thinks that biology teachers should have to teach Intelligent Design alongside Darwin's Theory of Evolution. I have no issue with people believing anything they want about how the earth and it's species came into being. I have a serious issue with religious ideology in a science classroom in our public schools.
20. And, just because this *is* a knitting blog... I am mysteriously drawn to all silk yarns. Let me loose in a store, and if it has silk in it, I will almost certainly run my hand over it.

Who to pass this onto? Hmmm... most certainly Julie and Claudia if Igor can be convinced to allow her to play along. If anyone else wants to play, by all means. I'm always interested in seeing what sorts of things people use to create a picture of themselves with.

Simple Things for Cold Weather

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Not Quite Long Enough Yet to Be a Headband

One of the good things that has happened this fall is that John is now working in downtown Chicago. It means that he is much closer to home (in other words, has shorter travel times) and that he can actually take public transportation to work (well, "can" is a relative verb, taking the car would be very expensive because of the cost of daily parking in the Loop). If you've ever worked in a big city area with a bunch of skyscrapers when the weather is cold and windy, you know that it can get pretty cold as the wind gets blocked by the big buildings, but then is incredibly intense in the areas it is diverted to. Thus, my sweetie, who normally just had to go from house to car to work with relatively little exposure to the elements, now has to encounter some pretty chilly weather as we move towards winter here in Chicago. A guy who normally would eschew hats, scarves and gloves is beginning to think that there is a purpose for these garments after all.

To be fair, for the last couple of years he has been asking for a headband to keep his ears warm when he is outdoors shoveling snow (he doesn't like hats very much because he hasn't found one that is flattering to his head shape). I made one small try using some white Cascade Indulgence, an angora blend that I thought would be both soft and warm for him (he is very into soft yarns and textures). One can argue about the wisdom of a white angora headband for a man, but John is actually quite careful with his clothes. The real problem with this project was actually three fold -- one, I made it exactly the right size (I should have made it an inch or two smaller than his head size so that it would stretch and grip properly) and two, angora doesn't really have much elasticity (meaning that once it stretched out, it wasn't going to hang on to his head very well), and three, I knit it circularly (meaning that the only way to fix it's being too big was to rip it out completely and start again).

So I kind of dumped this attempt into my closet of poorly thoughtout knitwear, and began to search for other solutions. While I was at MS&W, I ran across the solution at the Morehouse Merino booth -- a manly colored colorway (dark inky purple, deep burgandy, dark grey) in a yarn I know will be wonderful, soft and stretchy (a DK weight merino) in a pattern that is adjustable -- a ribbed band knit from end to end instead of in the round. Definitely a quick project, and something I thought I would have finished for him before the summer ended.

Heh. Ribbing doesn't always get my attention. But then it got cold downtown this week, and John says to me If I don't get a knitted headband soon, I might have to go out and buy one..... Those are the kind of words that get people in my family motivated. Is there anything worse to a crafter than to know that a recipient is open to a handmade gift, but might have to eschew it because the crafter has not been able to deliver in a time frame necessary to make the gift valuable? So yesterday, while hanging out with Julie (who is recovering nicely), I figured a knitting a little ribbed strip would be the perfect complement to the afternoon. I thought I would probably get the project finished and make sure that John had warm ears this morning.

Turns out his head is a little bigger than the average anticipated for the pattern. Even after knitting 15 rows past the suggested point, I still need an inch or two before he will even be able to get close to getting it around his head (to be fair, it's not big enough for me, either, so I think the pattern is geared to people with slightly smaller heads, or my row gauge is a little different than expected on the needle size recommended). No problem, because I have plenty of yarn. And because now he sees that I am close tot the finished project, he's decided that he can stay away from Target for a little while longer.

And this likely won't be the only winter project for John. He actually mentioned that with all the wind down town, it would probably be good to have a scarf. Lucky for me, I have some Lorna's Laces Angel in the closet all ready for this project (in nice, manly Pewter color). If he can't have an angora headband, at least he can have a warm, snuggly angora scarf (and I get a little farther along my stash reduction goal!).

Finally, a Neat Guestbook/Map

Check out our Frappr!

How very cool is this? Much thanks to Ann and Kay over at Mason Dixon and Rachael for pointing out this very cool Google-maps based tool. This is so much better than what I was trying to do before. If you come by and read, I'd just love it if you could add yourself to my map. And you don't have to be just in the US -- I zoomed it out so that you can see the whole world!

Strange, But Perhaps True

They hit that major weakness right on the head. And who am I to argue with a strength like that?

Your Birthdate: February 5
You have many talents, and you are great at sharing those talents with others.
Most people would be jealous of your clever intellect, but you're just too likeable to elicit jealousy.
Progressive and original, you're usually thinking up cutting edge ideas.
Quick witted and fast thinking, you have difficulty finding new challenges.

Your strength: Your superhuman brainpower

Your weakness: Your susceptibility to boredom

Your power color: Tangerine

Your power symbol: Ace

Your power month: May

Combatting the Threat of Store-bought Knitwear

Well, I finally completed a headband that extended around the full circumference of John's head. It took a while, but I offer up as proof, the following:

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A Man and a Handknit Headband

I ask you to ignore for a second that this was an indoor shot. This manly colored headband will soon be entering the chilly Chicago weather and protecting John's ears from wind and cold. And saving me from watching John wander through Target looking for something as a substitute. It has gotten several thumbs up for being warm and pleasant on the ears. And I've even been given "permission" to make him a scarf -- in Lorna's Laces Angel, dyed in the Pewter colorway.

It was a pretty quiet weekend, otherwise. I had a bit of a nostalgic moment going through my links page and realizing how many bloggers on it are no longer actively writing. My Knitting Bloggers blog Id number is 179 -- in other words, when I joined the ring, there still weren't even 200 people in it -- now there are 887. I surfed through it regularly looking for interesting content and trying to help Julie with some basic ring maintenance. Now the ring is too big for me to even contemplate surfing it on a regular basis, and I haven't been a ring checker for quite some time (fortunately Julie has found some more reliable helpers) A real shame from my perspective, because I'm sure that there are many new entries that are creative and interesting to be found. Yet another reason why I've been enjoying watching y'all stick your pins into my Frappr map -- finding new places to browse to on a regular basis.

Ouch!

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When I found out that my web hosting server was down this morning I had no idea that it was not only down, but suffered from some apparently catastrophic drive failure... and sent me back in time to October 25th! Good thing that Google caches everything! Of course, it would have been better if I had a more recent backup than August 26th....

Hopefully all will be restored, soon. Fortunately there's only a couple weeks of posts and pictures to get back into place. Not looking like there will be too much knitting tonight.

Continuing on in my small project obsession, I present the most luxurious item that I am working on currently -- a triangular scarf made with Hunt Valley Cashmere (located in Marlyand, no website).

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Cashmere or Not, Unblocked Lace Always Looks Like an Unformed Blob

As Julie and I were getting close to leaving MS&W in May, we took one last pass through the main barn. I'd seen the Hunt Valley Cashmere booth before, but just assumed it would be far too expensive to buy enough to actually do anything with. But like all good knitters and fiber fiends, we were ultimately lured in by the siren call of soft fiber -- and because she had some really lovely red cashmere yarn out where we could see it.

Since it was the end of the show, I wasn't feeling like spending too much more money (not only that, but there wasn't much room left in my suitcase) so I opted for a small, one skein project in laceweight cream cashmere -- a triangular lace scarf/shawl that I thought would make a nice fall/winter/spring accent for warding off the chill. It's a little hard to make out from the photo, but the scarf uses the Roman Stripe pattern from Barbara Walker's Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns.

I always love triangular patterns because they lull you into thinking that they are going to be a quick knit at the beginning. This scarf is only 66 rows and I'm done with row 46. In fact, however, they are big teases! At row 47 I have 134 stitches. By row 66, I'm binding of 364. But I like the pattern so far -- it has a very clever edging (read one that I thought must have been a mistake in the instructions when I first started doing it) that I will try to get a closeup of and explain when I get to blocking it.

I find the yarn quite pleasant, too. It has the softness of cashmere, but the sheen of silk. And from my perspective, it's hard to put together fiber traits I would like better. Makes me want to get out the cashmere tussah silk blend roving that I have in my stash. Hmmm....

P.S. I was able to recover all but one post thanks to the magic of Google caching. Unfortunately, it's just not going to be possible for me to go back and put all the comments in. But it's nice to have been able to mostly recover ffrom a catastrophic problem that I should have been prepared for and wasn't. I knew there was a reason to let those Google-bots roam through my blog!

Heading to the Source

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A Paper Lover's Selection: Metallic Stamp Pads, Sparkly Gel Pens in Holiday Colors, Holiday Flowers Kit, Star Making Kit, Postcards for Invitations, and an Accordian Cityscape Kit

When I am not thinking about fiber, I am often thinking about paper. While I don't do quite as much of it as I used to, some of my favorite crafty things to do involve paper. I've never been a scrapbooker (that has always seemed like it required a great deal of dedication that I don't usually have to any one thing), but I love rubber stamps, origami, and using paper to make interesting shapes and decorations. I consider myself fortunate that I live in a city that is the origin one of the best paper arts stores anywhere -- Paper Source. When I first got to Chicago they had one location in a hole in the wall near the brown line. Now not only have they expanded to a few other places in Chicago, they've also gone national and you can order online. But I still absolutely love making a little pilgrimage to the original store every now and again.

Every year, one of my favorite events is our holiday party. I love to fill my home with friends and cookies and holiday decorations. Last year, life got in the way of us pulling it together, so this year I am back with a vengeance. Last weekend we spent a few hours raiding Crate & Barrel for some of their lovely Christmas decorating items and today I headed out to Paper Source for supplies to put together my invitations. And of course, I found just a little bit more than I could leave in the store.

Lately I'm becoming more and more of a sucker for kits -- I love it when I can buy something that has all the pieces and all I need to do is cut and assemble. I don't end up with a lot of extra stuff I don't need and I get to enjoy the fun part without spending a lot of time hunting down all the component parts. Apparently, I'm not the only one, because Paper Source now has more of these wonderful sorts of things than I ever remember them having before. Basically, if you have a bone folder, an x-acto knife and some PVA adhesive, you're good to go on a variety of cool things. In fact, it was almost hard for me to limit myself to three...

1. Holiday Flower Kit -- also labelled as the Holiday Magnolia paper flower kit. This nifty little package is chock full of red and gold papers, floral wire and floral tape and instructions and templates for creating a whole boquet of winter magnolias. I think these will be perfect decorations for my holiday cookie table and as small accents for places that need a little extra color.

2. 3-D Star Kit. This kit is pretty simple -- 40 sheets of pre-cut square silver paper combined with templates and instructions for creating a multitude of heavenly objects. Since this makes 20-40 stars of varying shapes and forms, I'm thinking they'll be hanging from windows and over our mantlepiece once I find a little silver cording. Celestial origami! I just couldn't resist.

3. Holiday Accordian Cityscape Kit to complement the stars over my mantle piece, I'm going to make sure this nifty little city is living underneath them. With a glue stick and a snowflake punch included almost all I have to do is pull out the instructions and get started.

The rest of the goodies are for creating my party invitations. Inspired by a great new set of stamps from Julie (in addition to making all those fab felted bags, she also sells some awesome Hero Arts stamps from her Stamping Online store I decided that this year's invites will be a postcard format -- and will probably be this weekend's big craft project.

P.S. to folks asking about the cashmere scarf pattern -- the pattern was actually purchased from the Hunt Valley Cashmere folks, so I don't feel that I can share any of the pattern details on line. However, Hunt Valley's phone number is 410-298-8244 and the pattern is called the "Triangle Lace Scarf" by Marylin Merbach should you want to try to get a copy of your own. I have no idea if she will sell them without the cashmere, since I bought mine as a kit.

Just 7 Years Too Late for Me

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This has probably been making the rounds already, but just in case -- the link takes you to An Entirely Knitted Wedding.

There's some pretty impressive stuff to see as you look through the galleries. I'm impressed (especially with all the knitted food!), but given that I had an August wedding in Chicago, I think I'm glad that I just get to watch and didn't have to wear!

Let the Holidays Begin!

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This weekend, while Mickey Mouse was leading the charge down North Michigan Avenue, setting the Christmas Lights aglow, I was getting ready to start the second leg of the holiday season -- Christmas. Even though we're not past Thanksgiving yet, I've been giving a lot of thought to decorating the house and preparing for our annual holiday party. We didn't hold it last year, due to too much life getting in the way, so this year I'm back with a vengeance. All sorts of new goodies from Crate & Barrel and Ikea and my own homemade party invites.

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Invitation Arch

These postcard invitations (the actual info and the addressing is on the other side) were inspired by a set of stamps from Hero Arts called "Holiday Ribbons". The nice thing about these stamps is that they do most of the work for you -- they have a nice textured background, and, when used with the right ink and paper, really do make you think of ribbons. While I'm not as inspired or impressive when it comes to card making as some of the examples Julie has shown me from the Hero Arts catalog, I also think I did okay coming up with a design that I could make about 50 times -- I don't have a very long attention span when it comes to repetive things. I'm also not much of an artist, so it's usually easier for me when I stick with good geometric shapes and simple lines.

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Holiday Greetings

Let the party countdown begin!

Happy Finished Mini Ringel Socks

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Identical Mini Ringel Socks

Nothing like a little finished project action -- even if the photo lighting late at night in my bedroom isn't so great. These socks turned out a great deal more identical than I expected them to. About the only bit of difference is at the very toe where there's just one round more of the dark red on one sock than the other. Quite a satisfying resul!

Now I just have to find that second skein of Tiger Eye Socks that Rock and get moving again on the second sock in that pair. It's getting cold here in Chicago and a girl can never have too many soft and wonderful and colorful pairs of socks in her dresser drawer or on her feet!

Lace Wings

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In spite of a relatively long silence, I was busy getting some knitting done -- I just kept running out of time to blog about it or daylight hours to take pictures in. I hate watching it get dark at 5 pm. The first finished project of the holiday weekend was my cashmere lace scarf.

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Lace Wings Blocking

I probably should have blocked it into more of a triangle, but it really wanted to be wings, so I pinned it with a little curve in it's tips. Amazing how lace can go from a small raggy object to something large and elegant. Now you can really actually see what the lace pattern looks like!

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Up Close and Personal with Roman Stripe

Pretty, without being fussy.

It's long since been released from my blocking board, but the rainy miserable weather in Chicago has made it hard to get an action shot.

I've had a number of people ask after this pattern -- it's not my pattern, so I can't really give out the details on the internet, but the Roman Stripe lace can be found in Barbara Walker's Second Treasury. If you want the pattern (and the cashmere to go with it) you'll probably have to contact Hunt Valley Cashmere directly as the two were sold together as a kit.

A Third Ribbed Angel

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The weekend actually saw the completion of two projects. In addition to the lace scarf, I also finished a scarf for John. For anyone who has been following the story of my husband and what he will and won't wear as far as knitted items are concerned, this might come as something of a surprise. But becoming a public transportation commuter has changed his tune a little bit. Waiting for a bus or walking through the windy city corridors to work means that the husband gets quite a bit more time in the cold. So in addition to the headband (which he wishes were thicker) he also expressed interest in having a scarf to help keep the cold out.

Last year I had purchased 4 lovely little skeins of Lorna's Laces Angel (a lambswool and angora blend) in the Pewter colorway (Pewter is a lovely color, mostly solid grey with undertones of a mauvy-lavender color) -- a decidedly manly colorway meant to become a soft and warm but manly scarf. But he was so adamantly against the whole scarf concept that I sighed heavily (as I usually do when thwarted in the knitting realm) and gently tucked the lovely little skeins into my stash in the hopes that someday the right person or project would come along for them.

So you can imagine how surprised I was when the issue of scarves came up. I dug those 4 skeins out of the closet and did a quick poll to make sure that they were color and softness acceptable. When they passed that test, I quickly cast on for my favorite simple ribbed scarf

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K2 P2 Ribbed Scarf in Pewter Angel

If you want a quick but luxe gift for someone special, this scarf is literally one of those projects that you can finish in a day of dedicated knitting. Using a little bit larger needle than you normally would for a worsted weight yarn means that the angora has room to bloom and be soft and airy, but you don't end up with something too lacy to be worn by a picky guy. The Pewter colorway also, I think, works very well for this scarf. You can definitely see the subtle variagations, but they don't overwhelm the scarf -- in fact, I think, when combined with the ribbing, they help to create a very sophisticated texture. The final length of the scarf is just over 4 feet -- but once again, this works out well for the man in question, since he didn't want a long scarf that would fall past the bottom edge of his leather jacket when he tucked it inside, nor did he want a lot of extra bulk.

The scarf got it's first test drive today in the cold, windy Chicago November weather and got a thumb's up for warmth, softness and wearability. So even though it was kind of grey outside, I had a nice sunny feeling all day long.

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