Sunday, January 20, 2013

Knitting 2012

2012 was a funny old year knitting-wise. I really didn't get much done the first half of the year and the second half was mostly charity knitting with a bit of Christmas knitting at the end.

One of the charities I try and knit for when I can is "Mitts of Steal" on Ravelry. Fingerless mitts are knitted for patients on dialysis suffering from Steal Syndrome where the blood is diverted from the extremities, causing cold hands.  Mitts are fairly quick and easy to knit up and my favourite pattern is Susie's Reading Mitts - it's fast and very pretty.

This was my first pair, made in 2011:

During the Olympics this summer we were challenged to see how many pairs of mitts we could make during the games so I knit while we were on vacation and ended up with 4 1/2 pairs done during the actual games and the other 1 1/2 before and after (two of this pattern, 3 more simple ones and one colorwork pair).  This project was particularly good for stashbusting.

When we got back from England I started a new job, which has been very challenging, and didn't have a lot of time or energy to knit much until toward the end of October.

During the summer we transferred our membership to Sligo Church in Takoma Park. There are a lot of Adventist churches in the area and we visited a few of them but we felt the most at home at Sligo, partly because it felt the most like Newbold. Not surprising as the college is right next door.  One of the other things that attracted me in particular was its emphasis on ministry. I wanted to get involved in the church and in outreach and I thought of a way to combined my passion for knitting with my desire to give back to the community so I contacted the pastors and suggested a project knitting for the homeless for Christmas. They were interested immediately so we made announcements in church asking for knitters and crocheters to make hats, scarves and mittens in time for Christmas, and also asking for donations of unused yarn. It took a couple of weeks for things to start moving but once they did - wow!

We started getting bags of donated yarn and knitted/crocheted items left in the atrium of the church every week. I started a knit night on Wednesdays in the church and had people coming to learn to knit or crochet just so they could work on this project, including several students from the college next door. By the 22nd of December, when the items were given out at a soup run in downtown DC, we had collected more than 150 hats, mittens and scarves. I totally forgot to take pictures of the items I made but one of the pastors took this picture of some of the donations piled up on a table.

(c) Debbie Eiseley
This year I plan to start earlier and hopefully we can get to 300 donations!

I didn't knit a lot for Christmas this year. I did mittens for the nieces and nephews in California, which turned out really well, although I made Cedrics up as I went and it is a little wonky, but he loves elephants and is only 3 so I wasn't too worried.

I made another pair of socks for David. I actually started these in the airport in Cairo on the way home from Egypt in March but at some point in the summer one of the socks got felted in the wash and I didn't get around to finishing the replacement until December. So he has a pair of lovely cashmere blend socks.
 David had his overcoat and scarf stolen while he was in Chicago. He hung them up in a restaurant while he was there and when he went to leave the coat and scarf were gone! When he told me I immediately bought some yarn to make him a new scarf, although the original scarf turned up at the restaurant just before he left for the airport. Sadly not the coat though.  The first red scarf I made him was a bit lacy, in a manly way, and he liked it but complained that when it was really cold the wind came through the holes, so this time I made him a really thick cabled scarf that the wind will never make it through. This was my first real cabled project and it took a couple of weeks of pretty steady knitting to get it done. It's about five feet long and reversible. I'm quite proud of this really.
These were for Evie. As a juggler, huge fan of Labyrinth and David Bowie fangirl, I knew I had to make them for her. This first picture is of the palms and the second is of the backs. I'm pretty proud of these as well. I do love colorwork.

I bought this yarn to make myself a scarf just because I loved the colors but as I was knitting it just kept calling out a friend's name, so I ended up giving it to her for Christmas. I may buy some more of the yarn to make myself a scarf though, because I still love those colors.

So that's my knitting for 2012. Coming soon - Sligo's New Knitting Project or, How Much I Love Knitting With Baby Yarn.


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