I have taken to the very grad school pursuit of eating lunch in a locally owned coffee shop near campus. The WiFi is slightly spotty, but I make do. I have yet to find the perfect equilibrium of Awesome Chairs combined with Accessible Plug For Charger (I need at least an hour and a half for my plugless afternoon lecture), but I am here nonetheless. Perhaps me 'n' the blog will see a little more of each other.
This weekend was a good one for knitting. I did a little Violets here and there, but the main progress made involved deciding how big I actually wanted to make it. I think my mom likes slightly small shawls, while I tend toward giant blankets you can wrap yourself in :P Given that Violets has a wide band of edging around the sides, it's not very easy for me to envision how big the finished project will be. Still, between matching it up to a larger sample over at Sow's Ear and having a little discussion with TChemGrrl, I decided to go with 24 eyelet stamps across the top (you enlarge the pattern in increments of three, and the smallest size has 18). I just finished the 21-eyelet iteration, so it's 24 more long rows (8 rows per iteration) to go of the very simple eyelet pattern. Still, though, I always get motivated when I have the end in sight, so I'm very excited to be moving on.
Violets will be my mom's Christmas present. In terms of other holiday planning, my cousin's wife Khrisla found me on Facebook a few weeks back. She has an Etsy shop, and she has been promoting a campaign to buy handmade this holiday season. Given that I am a poor grad student with an overabundance of yarn lying around, I've decided to jump on the bandwagon and either make stuff (for my immediate family) or buy stuff from artisans. I have a lot of friends who make stuff, and I LOVE the hunt for just the right unique little presents, so I think this will be very fun.
****DEAR THELMA IF YOU EVER READ MY KNITTING BLOG DO NOT READ PAST THIS PART PLZ KTHX****
In terms of other stuff, I've decided to make Koolhaas for my brother. I love the hat and wanted to make it for someone, especially myself, but I think it will be great for my brother. He has that sort of style (in addition to a shavey head), and he loves the Team Zissou hat that I made him a few years ago. Now, of course I did not end up getting the yarn out of my stash (cheeky stash-plumper...) but I did pick up a wonderful skein of Dream In Color superwash worsted in a semi-solid color called Gothic Rose. (I'd link to the site, but their version is so washed out that it looks pink. It's more like a nice winey color; my gentleman friend pronounced it Fit For A Boy Hat). I think it'll work really well. The only thing I'm a bit concerned about is that a 16-inch unstretched hat seems a bit small for a person with a ginormous melon like myself and, I imagine, my brother. (Okay, more like an orange on a toothpick...)
The Team Zissou hat was made out of plain old Lion Wool. Knowing him, his likely method of cleaning is simply to never wash it, ever, but as he is Lead Fish Guy at a large Whole Foods, I imagine that washing would be nice sometime.
As for my dad... well, that vest is no closer to any stage of starting or completion, but who knows. Sow's Ear has just startd carrying Lamb's Pride Superwash, though, and I love how they're heathered. Somehow the Cascade 220 Superwash colors I see are always so bright and almost primary; I like a little more depth. So his stuff is still out to lunch. Oy.
I'll work on what I have, though, and I am hopeful that the recipients will like them.
Random note for later: I LOVE the Refined Aran from the new IK (not out yet).