Thursday, December 20, 2007

Oh, So Many Mittens

Ten pairs of mittens (one isn't pictured here because it's already wrapped). The Squid is so excited to give them to her friends. She told me that she told everyone already, told them which color they're getting, and that it's a secret and a surprise and not to tell anyone. I bet they'll be so surprised.

I made these out of yarn that matches my husband's mittens of last year. As soon as my girl saw them, she said they had to be for Malik, because when they play house he's always the dad (she's the mom, of course). So since they match her dad's mittens, they're for Malik.

Which means the crazy 80s mittens are for Makani, which is actually more appropriate. He's that kind of guy. He wears gold lame sneakers.

Max lives for all things green, so this yarn was chosen for his mittens.

Mia gets rainbow mittens. Her favorite color is actually yellow but I didn't think it was such a great color for mittens. My Squid's pink ones are black within 2 seconds of leaving the house. I don't mind, but someone else might. So we picked this yarn, which has bright yellow in it, but is a little more playground-friendly.

And there you have it. A preschool class with warm hands for Christmas. I have to admit, I'm pretty excited to give them away and see how excited my girl is to hand out gifts to her friends.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Flu. And Mittens.

First, happy birthday, Liz! Can you believe the first time I said that to you it was twenty-two years ago? gulp. moving on.

So a few years ago I was in line at the bank. I had a cold and was commenting to a friend of mine how scratchy my throat was, and how I was sick of the drippies, and I said something about "I get this same flu every year." and the woman in line in front of me turned around and literally hissed at me "if you're standing in this line it is NOT the flu." I was, of course, taken aback. Well, this past week, the Mole and I had the flu. And now I am one of those hissers. a cold is NOT the flu. Man, several times this week i wished I were just in a coma somewhere. No exaggeration. Bone pain like labor. And I've done that twice, without drugs, so I should know. just bad, bad, bad.

And worst of all, I got completely behind on my holiday knitting. Just as the Squid decided that she wanted me to make mittens for ALL of her classmates. Sigh. Luckily there are only 9 of them, including the Squid. And then two non-school friends. But those can wait. the classmates' mittens need to be finished by Friday. So as soon as I was able (yesterday), I got to knitting. (oh and by the way, as soon as I have a second I will happily share my mitten formula with all of you who asked.)

For Angus. Matching a hat I made for him last year.

For Declan, the Squid's current bestest friend. Diego to her Dora. The kid who broke my heart by telling me his favorite color was pink and that he was sad that only girl clothes came with rainbows and unicorns. He wears pink flip flops in the summer, but knows what makes boy clothes "boy clothes" and just wants rainbows, damnit. I wanted to make him something rainbowy-er and pinker, but my girl chose the yarn, professing it the "best one for her best friend." So there you have it.

For Macayla, who has not for a moment wavered in her love of purple since the moment she could talk.

These will be for Malik, when finished. Some of these is form yarn in balls, not cakes, so I have to do one at a time. Which annoys me, but there you have it. Look at that mitten. Now picture that mitten as vague geometric shapes, as if sketched in pastels on bumpy paper. Picture that, say, aqua triangle imposed over a salmon rectangle with a zorro-like scribble of black, on an oversized white shirt with shoulder pads, bloused out over a wide, asymetrical black studded belt. Over an acid wash denim miniskirt. Over slouchy suede ankle boots. I think I wore that to Liz's birthday 22 years ago.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Tomten! Finally!

Moley is sporting his first fever, so please excuse the sad, sad gaze. He's actually an amazingly chipper sick baby, but we were out on a little walk to get some fresh air and he was zoning out a little. These photos are taken with my cell phone while holding it up to a glass door so I could center the photo. So clearly not my most pristine images ever.

I haven't received the buttons I ordered yet, so I've tied a scarf around his neck to hold the hood on. He's in a baby carrier strapped to my chest to the front is staying closed that way. I love the shape of this hood.

I'm thinking about adding a blanket stitch edging in royal blue or purple. I have to see what the buttons look like when they arrive. I love the Rowan Big Wool in garter stitch, and I love the shape of this Tomten. I just halved the numbers EZ specified and skipped the short rows and the jacket is perfect. The sleeve length is great to just unroll and use as mittens.

I can't believe how long this took me to finish. I've been holding off on the last 14 rows of the last sleeve for ages. I don't really love knitting at such a large gauge, and the bulkiness of the big wool meant I couldn't tote it around. I loved the pattern though, and will be making one for the Squid soon.

In the meantime, this was a school weekend so I got some other knitting done, too. Wanting to give hand-made gifts this year, but having only my persnickety kid as a gauge - the only thing she has ever loved that I've made for her are these mittens. Almost a year later, she readily admits her love of pink, though she still mostly shuns princesses (especially princess movies, though she is sometimes tempted by some sparkle and shine in the toy store). When she lost one of her pink mittens, you'd have thought the world ended. I made her some new ones (she's at school with them right now, so no photo) and she wept with joy. Seriously.

So we decided to make mittens for all of her friends for the holidays. We meaning she decided what I should knit, for whom, and which color. And I'm doing the knitting. This pair is for Ruby and they match Maya's ladyslipper cardigan.

This pair is for Liv, who used to like blue but now likes pink and blue. Only 4 or 5 more pairs to go.

I also started a pink bunny out of some Muench Yarns Touch Me. So shiny and pink. The Squid requested it, of course. I fully expect her to reject it, but I needed to make one anyway to photograph for the pattern which I'll be printing up soon.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Urban Urchin

I designed this hat 2 winters ago. I was looking for something that wasn't snug, but stayed on. Something that wasn't froo-froo, but wasn't plain, either. I had been making myself some mistake rib scarves - I can't stand when scarves are all bulky under coats. So I was making skinny scarves just long enough to wrap around my neck twice and tie. When I'm inside, i unwrap it a little so it goes around my neck one time - but it's not thick so it doesn't make me hot, and it doesn't dangle too long and get in the way. So I decided to make a matching hat. The first version - the one I still wear every day in winter - you can see in my little photo of me over there in the corner.

This pattern is in the 2008 Stitch N Bitch calendar, but I've finally gotten it laid out and ready for you to buy if you don't want to buy the whole calendar. I haven't seen it yet, but I've seen some of the other designs on Ravelry, and it looks like a great collection - I hope mine arrives soon!

The red version pictured here? Stolen by the Squid. Though sometimes even the infant Mole wears the hat. I love mistake rib.

(and the Knitty pattern of the similar name? yeah, I know. But I submitted this to the Calendar in autumn of 2006 so it's a little late to change the name now! hats *do* resemble sea urchins. what can I say?)

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Tying up loose ends.

Finally lengthened Brigitta's sleeves. put new soles on my slippers, and my husband's slippers. made the Mole some tiny rainbowy leg warmers. finished one sleeve of the stripey sweater, can't face the next one. have half a sleeve left on his Tomten. need to knit the Squid a hat. holiday knitting? hahahaha.