When it comes to holiday gift knitting, I have spent years acquiring the following wisdom:
1: Start early. This does not mean 6 am December 24. Early means summer if possible.
2: Knit only for those who appreciate your handiwork. When you're knitting into the wee hours of the night trying to finish a gift ask yourself; "Is the recipient of this gift losing sleep over my gift?". If the answer is no, put down your needles and pour yourself a whiskey.
And the one lesson I have yet to learn...
3: Take pictures of your knitting before you stick it in a box and wrap it up in shiny paper!
My failure to photograph has left me with only a work-in-progress shot of my brother's Dr.Who scarf:
Pattern: The stripe pattern is from this crazy website
Yarn: A mix of random worsted weight from my stash
Notes: I used my machine - I'm not a masochist! I knit the scarf twice as wide as I wanted my finished dimensions and then sewed up the side to form a tube. The finished scarf is about 7 inches wide and 18 feet long.
Let's just pretend this is my brother wearing his new scarf:
You may remember I've actually made my brother a Dr.Who scarf in the past. Sadly, he lost the scarf along with almost everything he owned in a house fire this past year. (It's a long story, just know no one was hurt and everything is looking up for 2011). The fire is far enough in the past that I can now safely mourn the horrific loss of all the knitting I've done for him over the years. At least I can sleep sound knowing the natural wool fibres I chose would have been self-extinguishing.
So how about some knitting that has nothing to do with house-fires or sci-fi? (Sorry, I couldn't think of a more appropriate segue). I made my super-friend Cathy some thrum mitties!
Pattern: Mostly based on the Midwest style thrummed mittens from No Sheep for You
Yarn/Fibre: Noro Kuryon colour #8 with Natural black Alpaca Roving from Meadowview Alpaca farm
They match her new winter coat, she wears them, she loves them, what more can a gift-knitter ask for?
Well, I suppose I could ask for my friends to give me pictures of themselves wearing my knitting whilst looking like a marble sculpture:
Despite the creamy complexion, I can assure you Jenny is not made of marble. She's just knows how to rock some knit-wear and use her photographic talent to capture it with style.
Pattern: Directly from my brain
Yarn: Band - Estelle Superfine Alpaca (colour 302); Flowers - Patons Silk Bamboo (Apricot); Leaves - Patons Shetland Chunky (Leaf... appropriately)
Another very well received gift. Seriously, do I know who to knit for or what? I really love giving people hand made gifts that they actually appreciate. You can bet these peeps will be on my 2011 knit-list and this time I'll try to remember to bust out the camera before I bust out the wrapping paper ...or at least hire Jenny to bust it out for me.