Thursday, December 31, 2015

The air sort of tingles, today, despite grey, wet weather.

I can't let the year end without writing to you. I miss you dreadfully when I am away.

All well here, knitting-wise. I finished the final Awesome hat a few days after Christmas – but it turned out I had ordered a different present for the intended recipient. It arrived on Christmas Eve and took care of that problem. The Harlot posted a good essay the other day about the Christmas presents that don't get finished, and the people they were destined for. I don't know what to do with the surplus hat.

Then I clenched my teeth and finished sewing the bits of the centre of the Dunfallandy blankie together. I like the result a great deal. I have written to the designer to ask about the curious number of stitches specified to be picked up for the border, 174 per side I think it says. No response yet, but it was only a Ravelry message. Maybe, like me, she doesn't look there very often.


Now that I've actually done it, I feel sure that I have done the right thing by picking up the stitches available as each triangle was finished, 52, making 104 per side. I have also picked up an extra two stitches per side in the space in between the two triangles, which seemed to gape a bit.

That's plenty. Indeed, after knitting around once or twice, I am in a bit of a panic about whether it is going to be as easy as all that to finish the border in time. (“In time” = sometime in March.) The border is to be 5.5” wide according to the schematic, 7.5” according to the written pattern. We'll have a look at things when we get to 5.5”.

That's a lot of knitting, and the border increases by 8 stitches every other round. And then there are 16 rounds (still increasing) of a sort of horizontal ribbed edging.

I also have what amounts to the opposite anxiety, that I will run out of yarn. I bought eight skeins, I think, and now have nearly four. I can easily knit four skeins of worsted between now and March 1 -- but will they be enough?

I am using a separate circular needle for each side, as the pattern recommends. I am afraid that is a recipe for disaster – one day I will pick it up carelessly and whip the needle out of the stitches of a whole side. I've already got one super-long circular of the right gauge. I think I need to order two more. It would be quicker that way, too. The hand-over at each corner is fiddly and takes a bit of time.

It occurred to me only yesterday that square is not the best shape for a blankie. Rectangular, like Kate Davies' Rams & Yowes which I knit last year for grand-nephew Ted, is much better. Too late now – I must press on. The same difficulty will arise with the ten-stitch blanket.


As for non-knit, we had a grand Christmas. Reports to follow. And, almost better than that, I have made a good start on the income tax and it isn't even January yet.

20 comments:

  1. I missed you, too

    Great knitting orogress!

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  2. All that and taxes, too!

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  3. Yay! I was so happy to see you on my blog roll today! I'm so glad your Christmas was grand!
    The blanket looks good! I think you have enough wool.
    Way to go with the income taxes!

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  4. Elastic bands wound tightly around the needle tips not in use will keep the stitches on a fixed circular. There are instructions somewhere in one of the ten-stitch blanket threads on Ravelry on how to adapt the pattern to give an oblong finished blanket.
    Good to see you back this morning. The missing is mutual.

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  5. Lovely to have you back. Hope you enjoyed your Christmas. Looking forward to seeing how the border shapes up. I'm confident you'll have time to finish it!

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  6. My mornings are so much better with a report from you to accompany my morning tea--I miss you too. Glad to hear you had a good Christmas! Oblong blankies are more satisfyingly bed-like, but square ones wrap comfortingly around children when they get to be preschool-age. Both are much loved (says the former preschool teacher).

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  7. Anonymous1:04 PM

    Best wishes for 2016!
    Here's to health and happiness with family and friends. Oh and a lot of delicious yarn too!
    Thanks for the post today - it is indeed appreciated.
    LisaRR

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  8. Little rubber stoppers, or maybe corks for the needles not in use would work.

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  9. It makes my morning to see you 'here', Jean! I did get my hats finished, by choosing bulky yarn and one in super bulky. I'll do a post with photos. Best wishes for a healthier, serene 2016.

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  10. skeindalous2:07 PM

    such a pleasure to hear from you. I am trying to decide if I can order yarn for the Dunfallandy without it constituting a breach of my 'You MUST finish two WIPs before you begin a new project' rule! Surely just ordering the yarn is without guile or fault? Don't you agree???

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  11. As for the hat, I would say that you have your first finished object for Christmas, 2016. Congratulations!

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  12. It's so nice to see you back at your blog, Jean. The blankie is looking wonderful, and I don't think the fact it is a square shape is a problem. I'm so glad you had a nice Christmas!

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  13. Oh, how wonderful, you are back! I hope that 2016 will be knitterly productive and healthy and happy for your family.

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  14. Hogmaney (sp) is almost upon us. Happy Day!

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  15. Happy New Year! Lovely surprise to have a nice long post from you. The blankie is looking impressive.

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  16. Carol4:34 PM

    Hooray - you're back on the blog! Quoting greenmtngirl: my mornings are so much better with a report from you. What progress on the blankie! Here's to a happy, safe, and healthy new year to you and yours.

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  17. Happy New Year! Your horizontal cables are entrancing.

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  18. Happy New Year! So glad to read you again... and before the end of 2015. You are so inspiring! Thank you for your blog... i love reading you in the morning before heading out to the work world and on the weekend with more time to savour.

    Sending good wishes for a grand 2016!
    with lots of knitting and continued good health for you and your husband!

    Bonne Annee!

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  19. Anonymous11:26 PM

    Lovely to hear from you again. Wishing you all health and happiness for 2016.

    Helen (anon)

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  20. I always read your blog first thing in the very early morning (today I´m late) so it is the entry from the previous day. So I can start the year 2016 with you and I wish you good health and good knitting and happyness. The blankie looks wonderful!

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