Sweater for Mom

When searching for the right pattern for a sweater for my Mom, I was way more particular than I probably needed to be.  But, I mean, come on!  This is my Mom we’re talking about here!  She’s also a knitter, so the pattern needed to be complex enough to impress but still something I could begin and complete over the summer.  To find both the right pattern and the yarn, I went to my new local yarn store, Anacapa Fine Yarns.

I chose the pattern during a morning visit with Patrick in tow.  Not the most productive or enjoyable way to shop in a yarn store.  He had only just turned two, and was so excited to be on an outing with me.  He was really good while I found the perfect pattern — “Dean” by Manos del Uruguay, with great cables and sides in double seed stitch — but once I found that and started looking at yarns, he wanted to explore the store.  Not, however, in the same way I wanted to explore.  Patrick took his first opportunity to run between one of tall yarn shelves and the window all the way to the far corner behind another shelf where I couldn’t reach him but he could see me through the crack between the shelves.  “Momma…I SEEEEEE you!”  A good time to leave.

So I went back during nap time and found an extremely helpful clerk — friendly, knowledgeable, excited to help me find the right fit.  Together we picked Lamb’s Pride Wool in the color Orchid Thistle for the pattern.  When I was younger, my mom and I made the same cabled sweater pattern in cotton yarns — mine in white/blue variegated and hers in a pastel pink.  I thought I remembered that her sweater was on its last legs, so it seemed like she might be ready for another pink to be pretty in.

I didn’t start the sweater until we had moved — I was still finishing Las Vegas scarves in the meantime — but as soon as I did, I worked quickly and diligently on it to make my due date.  Once Patrick was in day care, Drew and I would spend our afternoons on campus, watching Netflix on our computer while I knitted in the University Center.  I drew some stares from the uninitiated, but haters can hate — this sweater was for my mom, and no amount of skanked-up undergrads giggling at me was going to deter me from my mission.

I am VERY happy with the final product!  There came a time, midway up the front, where I worried that it wasn’t as complex as I wanted.  Gulp.  But now, looking at the pictures, and seeing how great it fits her, I know I worried in vain.

It’s so nice to work with wool again, too.  I’ve put wool aside while living in Las Vegas, and, obviously, there’s no problem making a wool sweater for my Minnesotan Mom!  But in a cooler climate now, I hope I can make myself a nice wool something-or-other soon, too.  It’s so nice to work with, and it takes to the cables so well, and….well,…I really love cables.  They are so fun to make.  In, out, around!  Love it!

And I love my mom!  I hope she gets lots of cozy wear out of her sweater!  It’s like a portable hug she can take back with her to Minnesota!  It really is the least I can do to say thank you and happy birthday to such a special woman!  I love you, Mom!



Flamingo Scarf for me

Working through the stash…now I can be honest about this.  I’m furiously trying to work through the yarn I have WITHOUT buying anything new in order to skim the fat from the top of my stash so that it will fit in storage when we move onto the boat come July.  Got to, got to, got to slim it down.  Actually, right now, I’ve got it pretty slimmed down already — but there are several small project amounts that I want to use up before we move.

So here was another one!  The Flamingo Scarf, from Morehouse Merino again (my favorites) and another past Christmas present from Patrick and/or Drew.  If you’ve ever been in my classroom, or had to share a dorm room with me in college, say, then you know that I really do like these awkward birds.  It started because of Fantasia 2000 — the yo-yoing flamingo:

One of the friends I went to see the movie with thought this lovely little purple flamingo was just like me — it became a karaoke nickname, Madame Flamingo, and then turned into a little side-obsession after that.  Now I have stuffed flamingos, flamingo artwork, flamingo ornaments, and even flamingo bookends in my classroom — all very tastefully done, I assure you.  But what was I missing?  A flamingo scarf, obviously!

But not any more!  It was lots of fun to create — you start at the beak, then work down the neck to the body and then the legs are made separately and sewn on.  It was fast, and cute, and is a perfect funky addition to my wardrobe.  Ta-da!  Take that, all you line-dancing, conformist flamingos!  Ha!

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