Every year at this time, I flirt with the resolutions that afflict so many knitters: 12 sweaters, 52 pairs of socks, 13 whatevers in 2013. But if growing old has taught me anything, it is that by this time next year I won’t have a fraction of those items. It is tempting, as I look at my boxes of stash yarn, to think that 12 of them might be empty at this time next year. That would certainly ease my conscience when I get to fiber festivals or yarn stores, but I know it won’t happen (not the fiber fairs—the FOs).
So rather than resolutions, I’m thinking of things I would like to knit. In one case, the decision has been made for me. Our knitting group had a Secret Santa, and my present, which still has me gasping with delight, was this yarn from Chameleon Colorworks:
I have yet to knit a circular shawl, and I have more than 1800 yards of this heavenly stuff. I have looked at Evenstar many times, but the yardage of my stash lace yarn is insufficient. I think that Evenstar will be this summer’s project.
But less fanciful projects on the “I would like to finish them list” is the Helena baby sweater. I’m up to the front border, and I did some diving in my button stash and found these vintage buttons. They more than likely belonged to my mother—note the 60¢ price. The pattern calls for knitted tie closures, but in this soft yarn, I think they would pill and fray, so I’m adding buttons. The end is near on this one, so it is close to being my first 2013 FO.
I know that knitting top-down, in the round, is the method of choice for most knitters, but after knitting sweaters in the round for most of this year, I found myself longing to do something flat that would require purling and seaming. I also needed something to knit in my knitting group that I could not possibly screw up. (Fair Isle it turns out is far too challenging for group knitting—at least for me.) So I started my own design using Beaverslide Drygood’s McTaggart Tweed in nightshade and a motif with a 4-row repeat (and two of those rows are stockinette).
The yarn is surprisingly soft for a tweed and very enjoyable to knit with. The back is done, as are most of the two sleeves. The hang-up on this one is that I wanted slanted pockets on the front. Not only do I want them to slant, but I want the pocket inside to be plain stockinette to avoid extra bulk over my stomach (which has sufficient bulk of its own to require no added help). So I’m knitting the rest of the sleeves in public for now, and I started wrestling with the pockets during fleeting periods of quiet at home. I also haven’t quite decided on the collar and whether I want a zipped front or buttons. It is possible it will have a belt. This one is evolving as I go along—and it could be my 2013 Rhinebeck sweater.
And then there is Mara. Mara and I have been on a trial separation for about five weeks, but I think I’m ready to reconcile. I got exasperated with her, and me, when I messed up the yarn dominance on the light blue motif. Despite meticulously writing down on the chart which hand holds which color, for a third time when knitting this motif, I didn’t read my notes. Some rows after holding the yarn incorrectly, I found myself wondering why the colors just didn’t look right. I have the last of four incorrect rows to tink out, and then I can resume.
There is still a lot to do on this one—knitting sleeve #2, steeking and finishing the neck edge, and then weaving in ends and tacking down the insides of the steeks. If I keep at it, I might have it done before the weather warms up. And I would like to knit another stranded sweater this year.
As far as more things that I would like to knit in 2013, there are more one-color sweaters, socks, a couple of scarves, and one or two hats. But for now, I’m not looking past my current WIPs.
Happy New Year to all.