It amazes me that after I thought about it and talked about it for most of the year, I was still knitting right up until a few days before Christmas trying to get everything done. When will I learn? *sigh* Probably never!
Made 9 hats, a bracelet bag and a cowl for Christmas gifts ...
The bracelet bag was for my niece who goes out on the town with her girlfriends. I got the idea from Laurie at http://www.crazyauntpurl.com/ who made a felted bracelet bag. I'm not into felting so I revamped it with Lion Brand Homespun yarn in the black and gray Edwardian colorway.
I have to stop writing patterns down on post-it notes as I'm making them up because I can't find this one now. Basically, though, the Homespun yarn calls for size 10 needles, but I went down to size 6 dpns to make the fabric really tight. I started by crocheting a small circle (about 1-3/4" in diameter) for the bottom of the bag with a size H crochet hook, then picked up 30 stitches and knit in the round for about 4-1/2 inches until it was long enough to hold my cell phone, driver's license and a lip gloss.
I bound off 9 stitches, knitted 6, bound off another 9, then knitted the last 6. I continued knitting and purling the last 6 stitches back and forth for about 5 or 6 rows until there was enough length to fold the tab over a bracelet and stitch it down. Then I reattached yarn for the other 6 stitches and did the same thing. After searching a number of stores, I finally found the pair of bangle bracelets at Cost Plus World Market. Since my niece likes yellow gold jewelry, I would have preferred gold bracelets but could only find silver which, fortunately, ended up looking pretty good with the black and gray yarn. I also knitted a small flower pin to attach to the side that can be removed. The button in the center of the flower looks like it's covered in black velvet, which dresses it up a little more.
The beauty of this bag is you just wear it. If you're out at a club or dancing, you don't have to leave your purse unattended at the table. You simply wear it on your wrist ...
I also made a last minute cowl for our youngest daughter who has moved to a colder climate. Her new winter coat is chocolate brown with some pink trim. I used a double strand of worsted weight variegated yarn on size 17 needles and cast on 23 stitches. The pattern for each row was slip 1, knit 1, *purl 2, knit 2*, repeating the stitches between the asterisks to the last stitch which was purl 1.
It measures 11 inches wide and I knit until it was 24 inches long, then bound off.
I picked up four chocolate brown buttons that look a little like leather at Jo-Ann's and sewed them on evenly across the cowl. Since the stitches are loose because of the large needles used, she can actually button this anywhere she wants to, making it tighter, looser, asymmetrical, folded over, whatever makes her happy at the moment.
So that was the extent of my Christmas knitting for last year. I guess it's not too early to think about Christmas 2011, is it???