Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Back to hats & scarves

Well, I thought I was done. Really, how could I be so silly?

I work as a librarian at a college and I supervise all of our student employees. Last year I had a group of them (7 total) who were graduating after working with me for 3 years (or more). My babies leaving the nest, you know? So I decided that instead of the boring old $10.00 gift certificate my director always handed out, I would give them something more personal & made by hand. That's right, I decided to knit something for each and every one of them. Fortunately for me, they didn't all graduate at the same time, but I was still knitting three gifts for one quarter and four gifts for the next quarter. (Our school has quarters, not semesters, and they last about 11 weeks each.)

Now, if I had lots of knitting time available, this wouldn't really be a big thing. The first round of students just got scarves anyway. I think I was suckered in by the fact that my first scarf (in GGH Fee brown & gold) went so very quickly. I think I knocked that one out in one day while watching Frontier House on DVD. So I cheerfully started the next two that didn't go quite so quickly, but still wasn't bad. (Sadly, I only remember that the second one was blue & fuzzy, which just means it was not traumatic or overly exciting in any way. Also, I don't have my notes with me right now.) It would have been REALLY nice, however, if I hadn't wasted most of the quarter deciding that I wanted to do this for them & then agonizing over colors for the students. (They are art students and kind of picky about colors & whatnot.) The third was was a beast. It was for a guy (one who really appreciates the efforts of handmade anything) & I picked out this lovely alpaca in varigated colors: orange, rust, brown, grey, cream. Super nice yarn. Since I had only done two other scarves, in novelty yarns, on large needles, I was unprepared for the joy of knitting a rather simple, worsted weight yarn on size 7 needles. I ripped about 6 inches out twice trying to create a pattern that wasn't too time consuming but would prevent the curling. The yarn had a bit of wave to it, but not really a boucle, subtle patterns were lost, I was looking for a ribbing pattern, but not one that required a lot of counting. That scarf took forever! I think I finished it the day before graduation.

The next quarter was really tough, however, as there were four of them. More agonizing over colors, etc. & then I got stupidly generous and decided to throw in hats. What the heck was I thinking?! I managed to get them all done, and only one hat was a little big. Elastic works wonders, doesn't it?

Christmas brought about a whole new scarf & hat opportunity this year. I did about seven scarves in Great Adirondack yarns Fluff in various colors. Only one hat (in something else fluffy, but not G.A. Fluff - too expensive for a hat!) and I LOVED that color. Of course, it is the one yarn I lost all record of, I can't find it in the store anymore and can't look for it online because I don't know what it is! Typical. Anyway, the Christmas thing was okay, all were done on time and I even made myself my first knitted object. But after Scarf Mania, I decided it would be a LONG, LONG time before I made any more.

Now, I have another dear student graduating & what am I doing? Making a scarf. That's okay. It was a request & she's getting a deluxe Great Adirondack yarn scarf too. (The LYS was having a close-out sale on them & I went a little crazy at Christmas time.) Once again, I've got to do a hat. She's off to England for college when she leaves here, however, so I know she will use them. I really hate to see her go, but she's decided art isn't for her, she's going to study biology.

One more dear student to go, and he wants gloves. I've never made gloves, so this will be fun. At least I have a little over 3 months to get them done. Will that be enough time?! Should I freak out now, or wait until a week from the deadline? >sigh<

This is it! The last handknit graduation gifts for students. Really. I mean it this time...

1 comment:

Daisy said...

Wow, I don't think I've got your stamina. All those scarves. Phew... Well done!