(Non-knitters, I apologize for the bordering-on-ridiculous details that follow in today's post! We'll be back to frozen pipes, or snowed-in chickens, and baby toes reading by the fire tomorrow.)
May I introduce you to my knitting basket? After the near clear-out of the holidays with all those sweaters moving on out (save one, of course), this basket was looking a little empty and just not herself.
But that empty basket wasn't anything that a good dose of New Year's Startitis couldn't fix. Or, you could also call it Winter in Maine. Or, Pregnancy Hormones Alive and Well in a Knitter. Or...perhaps it's just How I Like To Roll - with a full basket.
I began this year with the goal of using what I have as best I can, which means that everything below was somewhere in my stash - either as something in hibernation that was frogged, or leftovers from other projects. It's been a challenging kind of fun to work that way, really - finding the yarn and yarn amounts before finding the pattern (Ravelry's "advanced search" feature makes it all the more fun and easy). It's also led to a lot of make-it-up myself Zimmermann-style sweater plans, which are fast becoming my favorite.
There's something to be said for having a variety of projects on the needles at once - the concentration and interest required for each may be at such different places, and therefore perfect for the many varied moments in the course of a day - from the fireside knitting with a sleeping babe on my lap, to the precious moments spent alone at the end of a day. And everywhere in between too - watching the live performances that happen all day long in the living room, sitting outside a ballet class waiting for my boys, or on a long car ride. This basket? She travels with me.
And inside? Well, I'm glad you asked...
First and foremost, because I know you all are keeping me on my toes about this one - all is progressing in the world of the Big Sweater. I did have a Valentine's Day goal in mind at one point, but that may - or may not - be temporarily on hold due to a marital standoff regarding a certain handmade something-or-other that I was supposed to receive by Thanksgiving of 2010. And didn't. So....when I hear that table saw cranking, you'll hear these knitting needles clacking. (All in good fun, of course. But a girl's gotta do what a girls gotta do, you know?)
There was a pile of Green Mountain Spinnery Mountain Mohair (such yummy stuff) in my stash from a one-time plan of making Peaks Island. Peaks Island is lovely, but I must have forgotten that I despise knitting moss stitch (of which the entire hood is knit). And so this one stopped before it began. But I am making my little boy Harper a seamless raglan, a la Elizabeth Zimmermann and enjoying it so much - especially with a few stripes of Fiber Company Terra tossed in there for good fun (leftover from my hourglass!).
One more precious knit for baby, knit in the most lovely of handdyed sock yarn from Heather. A sweater on size two needles might be a little silly, but not when it's for a wee babe, and the yarn is just so wonderful to work with. It's a Baby Surprise Jacket, another Zimmermann (in The Opinionated Knitter).
This little treat is for me. After doing so four times already, I'm mindful of how wonderful it feels to have something new and fresh to wear after baby is born. Something that isn't stretchy yoga pants and breastmilk-stained t-shirts. So this is my treat to myself - I'm picturing it as a short sleeved "gardening" sweater (using, yet again, Zimmermann - this time a yoked version, though). It's Beaverslide Worsted, leftover from Calvin's sweater, because I loved working with that yarn so much (and I overguessed my yardage for his sweater by a lot...a whole adult sweater to be precise).
Okay, one more for me. (Ahem.) This might someday be the Peasy cardigan, knit in the dreamiest of colorways - Ottowa by Fleece Artists, and from the wonderful Lettuce Knits. It was halfway through being something else, but I think it needed to be Peasy instead...there was a great deal of frogging. No use leaving gorgeous yarn sitting around in a not-inspired project, I say.
A little something else for baby. A pinwheel blanket, knit with Maine based String Theory, picked up at a trip to the fabulous Purl Diva in Brunswick. I showed you this yarn and hinted that it was for someone special last fall. Sneaky me.
And just because it's so nice to have a quick project going for instant gratification, a little Simple Pleasures Hat in progress for...whomever it will end up fitting best. Knit with a little something from Pigeonroof Studios.
And finally....in my basket, besides my bag of knitting notions (which I'll spare you from because really, haven't I gone on enough about a silly little knitting basket?), there is this notebook (actually this notebook). Which contains notes on everything I'm making and copies of the patterns stuffed haphazardly - but most assuredly - inside. Also? Drawings by my children, grocery lists, phone numbers, and likely that really important piece of mail that I can't find anywhere else but forget to look here for.
Goodness, I feel as though I just bared my soul for all the world to see. Or opened the door to the not-so-fascinating inner workings of my brain. Or spilled out the entire contents of my knitting basket onto the floor and dissected it bit by bit. Same thing, right?
Do tell. What's in your basket these days?