I got to add two more FOs to the Christmas gift pile over the weekend. The first, and most satisfying, is a blanket. It’s throw-sized, about 31″ by 41″, so not huge, but still, knitted blankets take a long time. It’s a much bigger commitment than, say, a hat. I spent most of Saturday at a band competition with my daughter and this was the project I took with me, hoping I could get it finished. I got a long way, and finished it Sunday morning. This is the Double Seed Stitch Blanket by Purl Soho. It’s simple, classic and lovely. I used 5 skeins of Knit Picks Brava Bulky in red. I wanted it to be soft and warm but also washable. I used a smaller needle than the pattern specified, 11 rather than 13, to get a denser fabric. I found it quite cozy on my lap as I worked on it, so I’m really hoping the recipient will be pleased with it.
The other gifty object is the red tote. You may remember I blogged about it before, discussing my felting struggles. I tried one last time and finally I have called it finished. This is the bag after three machine cycles and two hand-feltings.I like it. There’s more stitch definition than I would prefer, but it’s definitely a sturdy fabric. It’s a good size for a book, notebook and cell phone. For those who missed it before, this is the Lucky 7 Felted Tote made with Cascade 128 Wool. I’d like to try this pattern again with a different wool.
With two gifts finished, I thought I deserved to start a selfish project. Did anyone else see the new Candy Cane Scarf pattern? I can’t remember if I saw it on Ravelry or Facebook but I fell in love with it immediately. I don’t make many scarves anymore because they take so long, but I’m making this one! And I’m making it special too: I’m using my Cascade Yarns Baby Alpaca Chunky. Mmmm, it’s gonna be soft and warm and delightful! Since the yarn is bulky, not DK like the pattern uses, I’m using size 8 needles, and I only increased to 32 stitches before switching colors. I’m so happy with it, and it’s going faster than I expected (thank you, garter stitch).This is totally going to be worth all that end-weaving.
I hate to brag, but my Christmas shopping is DONE. Christmas knitting is down to one fingerless glove. (I really should start that soon.) I have none of the panic from last year, and I’m liking it. It’s a combination of starting earlier in the year and stressing less about handmade gifts. Not everyone is getting one, and that’s okay. Not everyone is getting something big and complicated, and that’s okay too. Now I can sit back and coast along, and not freak out every time the kids cross off another day on their Christmas countdown. I wish the same calm for all you other crafters!