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.