Saturday, November 14, 2009

It’s all your fault, Angel – or, rather, your mother’s. I’ve just ordered a pom-pom maker. It certainly sounds easier (and – dare I say it? -- more fun) than the old cardboard-circle system.

(JeanfromCornwall, how right you were the other day about the modern ease in obtaining materials. And it works both ways – a specialist supplier like Heirloom Knitting can sell to the world without the trouble and expense of a central London shop front. The Internet has to be up there with nuclear fission as one of the defining and transforming events of the 20th century.)

I am very grateful to you, Mary Lou, for the earflap hat pattern, and to you, Fishwife, for the Ravelry reference to the earflap hat pattern generator. That’s a keeper, for anyone who has a teen-aged head to knit for. Are you going to try to line yours, as Angel did and like the one your son admired?

So no heavy cotton, and no intarsia flowers, but I see a hat looming. I’m sorry to abandon the Ganomy (for the moment). It sounds an interesting idea, and I’m keen on mitres. But it’s a sound general rule of life, to aim for the product your recipient actually wants, rather than the one you think would do just as well.

What yarn? I don’t have much of anything in the way of bulky or super bulky, so I can’t use your kind gift, Mary Lou, straight out of the box, so to speak. I spent some time in the stash cupboard yesterday, reflecting rather glumly that if I do achieve a year without yarn-buying, the difference in there will scarcely be noticeable.

I considered Koigu. I have a substantial collection, which I hoard like Silas Marner his groats (or crowns or ducats or whatever they were). But maybe too light? I am rich in sock wool, to put it very mildly. Maybe two strands of that held together? I haven’t done that for a long time, but I remember the resulting fabric as easy to achieve and rather nice: firm and smooth.

As for actual knitting (as distinct from potential): I’m back in the saddle, so to speak. The ASJ now lacks only five increases – ten long, long rows – before I reach the centre front and leave a lot of stitches on hold and reveal it in all its potential glory. So I’ll postpone photography until then. The Mysterious Christmas Project is very near completion now – as you can see, because I’m keeping its progress bar up to date. I may be able to polish it off this weekend and get on to hat-swatching.

Silence here tomorrow. I’m going to be selling Christmas cards for Burma Assist at the RC cathedral in the morning, and before I do that I’ll have to make my own breakfast – can’t face the day without my porridge – and my husband’s, and lunch. Back Monday, insh’Allah.


  1. rosesmama12:59 PM

    I thought of you this morning when I saw the updated Maltese Fishermans Hat while browsing old IKs. It's in the Summer 2007. The baby version has a colorwork chart, which I suppose would not be too difficult to change and enlarge. Happy hat dreaming.

  2. Catriona1:08 PM

    Jean, I know you're not planning to buy any yarn, but I recently bought some LOVELY bulky alpaca yarn (Catalina superbulky) on sale from the Knitting & Crochet Guild trading site -

    reduced to £4.50 a skein.

    It's gorgeous - I bought an aubergine colour to make a Sideways Grande Cloche - but also availble in ecru/white and a range of other colours. Definitely recommend it!

  3. No, I'm not going to line Lad's hat. He likes hats soft and stretchy. Anyway, he has thick and luxuriant curly long hair and doesn't need extra insullation up top, belive me. He's got inbuilt thrums.

  4. And then you could always get one of those dinky i-cord makers to go with it...:-) (The Noro yarn made like that caused a lot of comment at our Craft and Quilt Fair but much cheaper to make it yourself. Yes, the idea is you knit it up afterwards on needles the size - but not the length - of broomsticks.)

  5. =Tamar9:49 PM

    Regarding i-cord makers - try before you buy. I found one at the thrift shop and right now I don't know where it is; I found it hard to use.
    Earflap hats are just beanies with flaps added, aren't they? Maybe with some extra rows to cover the back of the neck.

  6. Have fun with the pom-pom maker- that particular christmas my mom knit everyone slippers with pom-poms. It was funny however, that many of my friends in grad school would see me in my apartment padding around in those slippers and how many wistfully noted that they wanted a pair!