O-KAY!! I have my slate clear! Well, sort of. I do have a design project in the works, but plenty of time to the deadline on that. I had a deadline January 5...and another January 15...and another January 16. So I was kind of "AAAGHHH!!!" for a while there. But now I can just knit whatever I want (for a few days, until I receive the y-a-r-n for a s-u-r-p-r-i-s-e. I won't talk about it here, but you can track it on Ravelry - it's first in my queue for now. The recipient might stumble onto the blog, but there's no stumbling onto Ravelry. Speaking of which, I kind of like the exclusivity of Ravelry right now. It's the only place where it's possible to keep stuff secret from the general public, i.e. people I might be knitting gifts for. Flickr and the blog are risky, but without a Ravelry account, they're out of luck!)
So yeah, I did finish my hat project for my friend at work, though I only have an incomplete picture:
And boy, did I just only barely make it. And I mean JUST. I knit on this stupid thing until about 1:15 a.m. on Tuesday, but my left hand finally seized up and I had to stop. Then I worked on it on the bus on Wednesday morning. Kept working on it when I got to work, until 9:00 (my absolute must-start-work time), then took an early lunch and finished it literally 30 seconds before he went out the door. And I was shaking like a leaf with nerves by then - now I know how the Project Runway contestants feel when Tim walks in and says "Okay people, it's time!" I wish I'd planned better, because it really could have used a good wash to even out the stitches. But it got done. (No FO picture, no time - this is the best I have. But it's not like anything special happened, just more brown. You can just picture it with a top, and that's it.) It would have been much quicker a knit if it weren't for this:
A three-inch lining designed to keep his ears warm on the slopes. He's going snowboarding for the first time (hence the screaming yellow stripes - I wanted his buddy to be able to see him easily when he ended up face-down in the snow with his feet stapled to a plank. This is also the reason for the name of the hat - which is a play on the term "snowbunny" and "bunny flop", one of which he will be and the other of which I'm quite certain he'll do.) My original idea also included stitching his name into this brim in brown, but I'm not completely insane - I knew adding that much detail was going to add some time to the project, so I abandoned it.
The pattern was my own little whip-up thing. I just knit a gauge swatch, did the math, and took off. I really learned a lot from my Knit, Purl, Now What? class. (Mind you, it's a class I TAUGHT, not one I took. I think I probably learned more from that than my students. I've used the lessons I came up with quite frequently.) I may write up a pattern, though I have to play with some numbers since this was custom-fit for his head and most people wouldn't be knitting a hat for a 23 1/2" head. (No, really. Hence the 120 stitches.) It looks very snowboarder to me, and a little Abercrombie & Fitch. It works for Jim, he's a hip fun guy. In a fortunate coincidence, it also matches his new snowboarding outfit, hurray!
I know I'm going on and on about it, and it's just a stupid hat. I'm just enthused because it's so nice to finish something and show it to you right away. :-)
Lemme do this thing real quick too:
Pattern: Snowbunny Flop Beanie (my own "pattern")
Yarn: Laines du Nord Maxi (hey, anyone know if this is okay for machine washing??)
Needles: US 5 (3.75mm) Addi Turbo (20", miserable things with itty bitty short needles not friendly to continental knitting) and US 5 (3.75mm) Clover double-points
For: Jim at work
Started: January 15, 2008 (unless you count the cast on and one round, which I did before Christmas)
Finished: January 16, 2008
Now I'm back to my long-abandoned Pomatomus. Which I seem to have skittered off track on - my knitting is no longer matching up with the pattern. But it LOOKS fine, so I'm not going to worry about the fact that I'm supposed to be doing ktbl, p, ktbl, p and instead I'm doing p, ktbl, p, ktbl. Here's hoping that works out for me.