Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Winter wear

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Since I frogged the Not Quite Straight scarf I had to find something else to knit for my son in law. After asking my daughter for some input, she told me he's not fond of wearing scarves, oh goodie! but he does need a warm winter hat since he feels the cold more than the average person.

Hmn... how about an old fashioned tuque? I remember wearing one as a kid, kept my head so warm I sweated under it. He wears a black jacket, so obviously black yarn has to be the choice. After pawing through my stash, I could only find one ball of black yarn. Uh oh.... The pattern I had chosen to use asks for worsted weight yarn, 2 strands held together on number 10 circular needles. The whole pattern is done in k2, p2 which gives it a deep rib. But with only 1 ball of yarn, what to do. I kept digging in my stash and came across several balls of demin blue yarn in a much lighter weight but figured by using 2 strands of the blue combined with 1 strand of the black, that should meet the requirements of the pattern.

The blue yarn was recycled from a sweater I picked up for 1$ at a church sale. When I started knitting again a few years ago, I did not want to spend tons of money on yarn when I wasn't even sure if I'd be knitting for more than a couple of months and dropping it again. So I had gone to a church sale and picked up 4 sweaters, unraveled the lot, and hand wound the yarn back into center pull balls for reuse. I learned a few things doing that.
  1. Don't buy sweaters that are machine seamed. Means that the edges have been cut which gives you pieces of yarn less than a meter long. I spent more time knotting pieces together and finally gave up on that sweater.
  2. Do buy sweaters that are handknit. You can tell if they are handknit by the way they are assembled. ie: no machine stitching.
  3. And last but not least, buy colors you like! I have 10 balls of dark brick red yarn that I still don't know what to do with yet. It feels like cotton or a cotton blend. I'll figure out what to use it for, but not just yet.
  4. Wash and dry flat the sweater BEFORE you unravel it. I found that some sweaters were unwashed and ahhh umm... smelled odd? and no, I don't want to know.
I finished knitting the hat which was knit flat. All I have left to do is seam it and try it on for size. I hope he likes it.

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