Friday, December 29, 2006

Ann's 2006 Round Up


There were many, many, many crowns handed out.

A Mistaken Rib Scarf knit for the Red Scarf Project because the wonderful BackBou ended up with the Basket Weave Scarf as a stocking stuffer.

My mother's socks (doesn't that sound like an Almodovar movie?) ...

Yarn: Claudia's Hand Painted, 100% merino, Purple Earth
Needles: US 1s, 9st/inch
Pattern: a simple 2x2 rib with garter stitch heel, top down/heel flap construction
Size: 10 1/2 inches from toe to heel, 9 inches up the calf. I cast on 80 stitches.
Notes: These socks took almost a month to knit! At 9st/inch, there were a whole lot of stitches. And unfortunately after the 3rd row on the 1st sock, on an airplane to Memphis, one of my needles splintered. I have never considered myself to be a superstitious person, but I wouldn't switch needles in the middle of the project. I still don't understand why, it wasn't logical, but I managed to studiously avoid the splinted end of the double-pointed needles throughout the socks. My mother now has socks that really fit her feet! Hurray!

Nuts and Bolts/Techniques: Without a doubt, the biggest accomplishment of this year has been that I know consider myself a sock knitter! I knit 6 pairs of socks this year, not 16, but I am officially hooked. I also tried some openwork, it was so basic that I hesitate to call it lace. There was fair isle, cabling, and felting ... lots of felting. As a recent convert to knitting (2 1/2 years), this was a real turning point year for me in confidence. I am comfortable now reading patterns and charts, jumping into advanced projects and techniques, and figuring out the right yarn for the project. Most importantly since mistakes will happen, I have learned to zipper down.

Designing: Between Pumpkin Pie Man, designing a cute handtowel for N, tweeking the King Harald Street Hats, and felting my spiral bag, I have made a huge leap in my designing skills. I accept, with resignation, the absolute importance of swatching and checking gauge. I love getting out the graph paper and working the numbers!

Stashing: 2006 saw my first projects with Noro, All Hemp, Blue Sky Organic Cotton, and sock yarns such as Sockacolori, Claudia's Handpainted, Wildfoot, and Trekking. I have learned lots about different kinds of yarn and have added some interesting yarns to my stash including Handmaiden Sea Silk and O-Wool. The BackBou stuck some great yak yarn in my stocking for Christmas that will become some mittens one day as well (maybe Liz's Playground Mittens?). I have discovered that I am more comfortable with a small stash -- too much in the closet makes me feel pressured and I just plain don't have space for much. Thanks to the Summer of Stash for not letting me go yarn wild this summer!

Favorite Projects: King Harald Street Hats, Nora's Stole, and Pumpkin Pie Man.

End of the Year Thoughts: I love this blog. It has helped my knitting tremendously, but more importantly I have discovered a supportive, fun, and instructive community of knitters. I am not a great knitter, writer, nor photographer ... and I am a terrible lurker (usually because I'm trying to do too many things at once and can't always get my fingers on the keyboard ...), but please know that this blog community has filled a creative need that I've had for years. Thank you.


Liz K. said...

I so agree with the huge impact blogging as had on my knitting. I am sort of mentally preparing a post for our blogiversary in a few weeks in which I gush about blogging.

You have made a ton of progress this year. I was especially blown away by the fearlessness with which you approach your knitting, from choosing projects to attempting new techniques to riffing on an original design.

HPNY KNITS said...

great year! blogging has also inspired me a lot! its great to see so many possibilities.
keep it up!

Anonymous said...

ok, mo, you're next...

knitting time, free your mind, let love unwind (or at least the skeins)...

happy new year to you!

Elinor said...

Those are great projects! I agree about the blogging. I started blogging with the hope that keeping a record of my knitting would keep it in check - sort of like a food diary. Heh. Yeah, that worked out really well.

Dorothy said...

You've made leaps and bounds over the year.

I think I like the crowns best.

Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

Your mother in laws sister is back to knitting- our church circle is making tiny caps for newborns in Africa.So I brought the pattern to TN and am working on it.. without the help of our competent leader back home, but its quick and fun and I have found some crazy yarn called "Giggle"-
You knit beautifully and I love the Pumpkin sweater on Nora. Keep up the good work
Lyn P ( known as G'ma Lyn)

gail said...

What sweet crowns on sweet girls!! And, I love those King Harald Street hats. Need to find the pattern.