Saturday, December 19, 2009

Fun project

I got commissioned to make a stocking for a friend of my mom's. She has a relative who's had a challenging life thus far and is coming to live with them for Christmas and hopefully longer than that. He's a teenager and has never had anyone worth celebrating Christmas with up till now, and she wanted him to feel welcome with their family. She has these wonderful stockings made by her MIL many years ago and wanted one for him to match. This was a fun and challenging project. The two on the right are a couple of the originals and the one on the left is the one I made. She's also got a couple more, one with a Christmas tree and one with a reindeer, so she said the snowmen would be great. My sock wizard software came in so handy for this project! I use that software a lot (if you like making your own sock patterns I HIGHLY reccomend that software!) but this project alone made it worth the money. All I did was measure the gauge and measurements from the original stockings and plugged the numbers into the software. Then I chose my method and type of heel/toe, and voila! I did add increases for the leg, and while the originals were cuff down I opted to do toe-up just because I prefer it that way, but it turned out pretty close to the original I think. I also repaired the other two in the photo. My repair jobs aren't perfect, but they look a lot better than they had. One unfortunately had a large hole in it (hey, it has held up pretty well considering it is over 50 years old!) but I was able to pick up the dropped stitches and with some new, very similar yarn was able to graft it together. I'm thrilled I got to be part of making Christmas special for a family, plus I got some unexpected spending money so YAY!

I hope the things I knit for my children are as treasured down the road as these stockings are for this family. I had planned to make stockings for my family this year but didn't get a chance, I am hoping to have them done by next Christmas especially since I was unable to find a stocking for my newest child that matched the others we had. I like everything to match, I'm a bit OCD like that. :-) This stocking only took me about a week, so I know I can make some for my family for next year over the course of 2010.

I also managed to finish up my holiday knitting. Well, they were going to be holiday presents, but I finished my husband's socks on a particularly chilly day and he was complaining his feet were cold so I decided not to wait (they weren't a surprise or anything, he'd seen me working on them and had even tried them on a few times). Then I finished a pair of socks for my son and wanted to see how they fit, so I let him wear them to school. That pair was started many many months ago, before I learned how to do toe up and magic loop for socks. They were cuff down on 2 circs and had gotten stashed in a front pocket of a bag where they were lost until last week. I dug that bag out to use for my baby girl's first overnight trip (my parents watched her while my inlaws watched the other 2 so my husband and I could attend the KISS concert!). Lo and behold, there were the socks I'd been looking months for! I had the cuffs done, so I did a quick short row heel and a stockinette foot and they were done quickly.

After those were done, I started another scarf for my 3 year old. I think she may be sensitive to wool, she's complained that the other scarf I knit for her is itchy. She picked out a skein of fuzzy fluffy novelty yarn last week and asked me to make her a necklace, LOL, so I suggested a scarf instead. Did a quick garter stitch scarf and finished it at my knitting group this week (it is easy to get a lot of knitting done there when you bring basic garter stitch!). Since I had already given my husband and son their holiday knits, I gave it to her when I got home that evening. She was thrilled but then asked where her necklace was, so being the nice mommy that I am, I'm working on a simple i-cord necklace for her with the leftovers.

Now I'm working on the slip-knit socks for myself after I restarted them to enlarge them. I was going to just frog back to the toe but had a difficult time getting them back on the needles so I just frogged the whole thing and started over. They're moving pretty fast and since I love the pattern and the yarn, I don't mind. I'm also working on a pair of sock booties for my baby girl, and if the pattern turns out like I hope it does, I'll post it here.

I've also decided that 2010 will be the year of the sock for me, and I plan to (hopefully!) have at least one pair of socks on the needles at all times. Considering I have enough yarn to do around 50 or so pairs of socks, I really would like to use up a lot of it. Who knows, maybe if I manage to do an average of a pair a week I can use it all up next year! Then again, that would mean I couldn't buy any more sock yarn next year, and I don't see that happening. But maybe I can try to buy, well, less or something. . . .

Have a Merry Christmas or whatever holiday you celebrate. I'm looking very forward to spending quality time with my family and my knitting.