Does that sound incongruous? Maybe if you are a heavy-duty Christmas gift knitter; November and December would be the months when you featured posts heavy with gift knitting. Personally, I have sworn off the stress of knitting every single gift at Christmas, and pared back that sort of deadline-heavy construction.
However, June had me working diligently on three gifts for family members, which I finished up and sent off last week. The first was a blanket for my first great-nephew, who will arrive sometime in August. Long-time readers might remember this post, about his mother, several years ago, and be happy to hear what a delighted mama-to-be she is today.
This photo, taken at the end of our spinning retreat weekend the last weekend in June (I know... where are the pictures?!), shows the blanket underneath the shawlette I finished up and all the wool I spun...
Unfortunately, I had it off the needles, washed and almost ready to go, when MIL and FIL called to say they wanted to meet for lunch as they passed through Grass Valley. I spent the drive down weaving in the last few ends and tucking the blanket into a gift bag, but no final photograph got taken!
MIL took it along with their gift to the baby shower for our newest family member on Saturday, where his mama loved it! The yarn is Jarbo Garn Duo,a soft and eminently machine washable (and dryable) acrylic from Sweden, a bulky weight. The pattern is my own, using 6-row, 4-stitch cables and bordered by single and double crochet bands.
You can also see a Forest Canopy shawl hanging from the back of the chair, made in Noro Silk Garden for my MIL. She and I had gone shopping at the Mendocino Yarn Shop, back in April, to find a suitable baby gift yarn, and she fell in love with the way the colors unwound in the various Noro projects on display. She was so delighted with her gift, and I delighted to get to give it to her right after the blocking was finished!
I blocked this shawl over the 4th weekend, and also finished up the details for the cutest granddaughter dress, the Two Summer Sundress. The yarn is a hot pink Schulana cotton worsted with a bit of lycra, leftover from this tank top I made several years ago, and the delicate, flowery fabric was purchased at A Verb for Keeping Warm, on the same spring vacation as these two yarns (what? a theme post from Birdsong?)
That baby girl just keeps on growing, and actually may only get one summer out of this dress... I had to crochet a buttonhole extension on the back of the yoke after I had finished the sewing as she barely fits it around the ribcage!
First, a front view... I love how one of my vintage, crochet-covered hangars was such a perfect match!
Then, of course, the back... one of the best features of this pattern is that the straps and the join between knitting and fabric are reinforced by sewing grosgrain ribbon over them. It keeps the straps from stretching and protects the knitting and seaming at the point of most contact. The straps can be buttoned to the high waist in either a criss-crossed or straight position to extend the life of the dress as the child grows, and there are two buttonholes on each strap for further adjustment. The back photo probably doesn't make it easy to tell, but I added two more buttonholes, making four adjustments around.
I need to get a photo of Lil' Miss wearing it next.
Now that all of this gift knitting has been finished off and gifted away, I am back to knitting for myself... I have two projects to get to for the fiber guild's booth at the county fair, both made from my handspun yarns (though not the ones pictured above), and a special project for myself. Here's a hint...
My dye gardens are keeping me busy, but I do plan to get back to this blog with a post of my dye and knitting adventures soon... in the meantime, you can check out the CSA progress here....see ya soon!