Thursday, February 24, 2011

New Beginnings

Have I mentioned before that knitting is great for relieving stress? Yes? Ok, well I'm going to say it again anyway. Knitting is really great for relieving stress. The repetition of the motion, the clicking of the needles, the movement of the yarn across my hand and onto the needle - it all seems to work wonders for my frazzled mind. That said, I've started a new project this week and after the week we've had, I'm probably going to finish it by tomorrow.

The project is a Spiral Baby Blanket. I really think this can be a shawl as well, and I've seen it made into a cardigan/jacket for toddlers too. It's very versatile. It's also proving to be very easy so far, but it looks complicated and tres fancy - which is a great trick for any knitting project.
Especially one for a mom with three kids, under some stress from life lately, who is not capable of following a chart to make a spectacular knit garment, but is not content to simply knit another hat, blanket or scarf.

I'm knitting it with Deborah Norville's Serenity Garden Yarn in Gems. Deborah Norville? I know, she was a Today show anchor long before Katie Couric's perkiness took over the morning news. Evidently, she left journalism to make yarn, and I have to say it suits her well. For acrylic yarn, it's very soft, smooth and easy to work with. Technically, this is sock yarn as it's rated a size 2, fine yarn which isn't a big deal as far as the pattern goes, except it means I'll be adding many more stitches than it calls for to make the blanket big enough. Or, I may decide to keep it small and it will become a blanket for one of Syda's many babies. This might the best use of it, as all of her babies are in various states of undress throughout the house.

This project has also been my first attempt at using the Magic Loop method in place of DPNs. I love DPNs, I really do, especially the little, tiny size 1 or 2s that make up cute toddler socks and baby sweaters. This project is intended to be started on DPNs and then moved to circular needles when it gets too large. I tried starting this on DPNs four times before I quit. I wish I had just started with Magic Loop, it's so much easier than I had ever imagined. For those on the fence about Magic Loop, give it a try. Your DPNs will still be there when you need or want them, but this method is just brilliant really. I'm very tempted to try a pair of socks this way in the future, thought that will require buying a smaller needle set for the job. Oh, the hardships of being a knitter. No one warns you that it can quickly become an expensive hobby if you let it.

Anyway, here are a few shots of the beginning of the Spiral Baby Blanket and the beautiful yarn it's originating from.

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