This is a knitted dress I made for a friend’s baby. I love making baby gifts because the time I spend on them gives me time to think about the new baby. This dress is going to a first baby for such a nice couple, and while I made it I got to recall all the excitement and love and expectation that comes along with waiting for a first baby–and a girl, too. What a treat! I used the Garden Trellis Dress pattern from the book Sock Yarn One Skein Wonders. I used sport-weight yarn, so mine is a little bigger than prescribed, but I knew that going in. I actually very much like the size it turned out because I think it will fit the baby in her first year as a dress, and in her second as a tunic. I used Knit Picks’ Brava yarn in Tidepool so it could be easily laundered. I got a little sidetracked and miscounted on some of the diamonds on the skirt, so they aren’t in exactly the right places according to the pattern, but I felt like you wouldn’t know something was wrong unless you were staring at the pattern so I just went with it.
Another One-Skein Wonder project! This is the Marialis scarf from the Designer book. I made it out of Knitpicks sock yarn, Felici I think, but it was a close-out color that had been in my stash a while. I don’t like to knit scarves (had only knitted scarves for children) because I can crochet them so fast and scarves are boring, but I really wanted to try one of the lacy, lightweight yarn patterns that had been catching my eye. I finished this in two weeks and literally picked it up and knitted one repeat every time I had a chance to sit down. Load the dishwasher–knit a repeat! Bath a child–knit a repeat! Feed the dog–you get the idea! I took to shouting out numbers after every repeat, just so I could know I was making some progress. It was totally arbitrary, because the pattern just says to “knit to desired length,” and I ran out of yarn at about the right length, but it was a mental boost to count my repeats. Even baby Daphne started called out “yeah!” along with my other kids to cheer me on when I yelled a number. This game was probably the only thing that got me through the whole thing, because now I can confirm that I don’t like knitting scarves. It’s just boring.
Anyway, this one was worth the trouble. The pattern is very pretty and the yarn is soft and warm around my neck. The sock yarn has a lot of nylon in it, I think, so the lace has tendency to curl up a little against my warm skin and not lay out flat like I blocked it, but it still looks nice. The color pattern of this yarn worked really well with this lace, which was just luck but made me happy.
A few weeks ago I made my daughter this blue hat. I had only glanced at the lace chart and not at the instructions, and thus knitted the edge pattern incorrectly. I wasn’t unhappy with the result, but I wanted to do it again the right way, and plus I wanted a hat for myself out of it this time. I used some half-skeins of wool in my stash. The pattern is the edge-of-lace hat in 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders. On my daughter’s hat I made decreases for the crown instead of following the pattern, but for my own I followed the pattern just to see how it would look because I’d never made a hat with sewn-off crown in that way before. Basically you just knit the hat as one big tube, then sew off the top and stitch all the corners together. I actually really liked the extra fullness this gave the top of the hat. It is more flattering on me, I think, than a more fitted cap. But lest you think this project went just as I wished, let me confess this: I also also knitted mitts based on the wrist-warmer pattern associated with the hat pattern, but they were too big, so I gave them to my neighbor! Now she has pretty mitts and I have a pretty hat and we must never wear them in the same place at the same time.
Dorothy got a new blue hat to start out this chilly January. It was really supposed to be my hat, but sometimes that happens. The yarn is a delicious, wonderful, hand-spun, hand-dyed wool from Block Island, Rhode Island. A friend sent it as a souvenir of her trip. I’ve held on to it for six months while I waited for the right inspiration to hit, and when I came across the edge of lace hat pattern in 101 Designer One-Skein Wonders I decided that would be it. I got a new black coat for Christmas, and I thought the pop of bright blue was just what it needed. The first problem with my execution of this plan was that I only read the first line of the pattern, which says to do the eight lines of the lace pattern twice. And I followed the lace chart completely through–twice. The edge was pretty, but not a bit like the photo I’d been drawn to in the book. I looked more closely. I was supposed to have put a straight knitted row in between every row of the lace chart, and the chart itself represented two repeats of the pattern. Oops. So my lace is unique. That didn’t bother me so much given that what I ended up with was still pretty, but my blue-eyed Dorothy had been watching me knit this and thought it was so nice, and then when I tried it on the color wasn’t very good for me. It made my autumn colors and green eyes look sickly, which is never the look I’m going for. Then I popped it on my daughter’s head and it was gorgeous. The blue is just the right color for her eyes and porcelain skin. So there you go, a hat for Dorothy. I have some heathery purple yarn left over from some other projects and I think I may try the hat again in those colors for myself. And I’ll enjoy my handiwork in a place I can see it better, on the head of my oldest!