As pathetic as it is that I'm getting distracted by new and pretty patterns, I've been doing pretty darn well getting through my list of "should"s lately. For one thing, I am making some progress on my balaclava. Not a lot, but I am fairly close to dividing for the face hole.
For another thing, I took only two days to check another item off my list. Last year, I made my Mom a Snapdragon Tam for Mother's Day. Unfortunately, despite the fact that I made the medium size (because she has a medium head-size), it was ridiculously large on her. After a while, she realised it was so bad that she really couldn't wear it, and asked me if it was possible to re-do it in the smaller size. Of course, I could. :)
So Sunday morning I cast on, and by Monday evening when we were over at my parents' place, I was able to finish, weave in the ends, and block it on one of her dinner plates. I told her it would be ready to wear once it was dry, and could she please take a picture of it and send it to me. The picture will have to wait, because she hasn't had a chance to do that yet, but she tells me that the revised version fits bee-yew-tifully and she loves it a lot. Yay! :)
So really, when you think about it, I've been quite responsible. Throw in that Gryffindor vest I did for DD1, and my grandmother's 95th birthday present, and I actually start looking kind of like a machine. :)
Therefore, I'm not feeling that much guilt about the prospect of indulging in something new. Especially since the something new can actually be manipulated into becoming something from my "should"s list.
I mentioned last time that one of my most wonderfullest friends had asked me to make her a hat. She has a really neat "liner" type thing to wear for the winter that is deliciously warm, but since it is a liner, it's meant to be on the inside of headwear, and it looks tremendously dorky worn just by itself. Since it already provides enough warmth on its own, all she needs is something fairly thin over top that looks purty, so she asked if I could make something like that for her.
Well yes, yes I could. :) I found the PERFECT yarn for her. And I mean perfect - I saw it and it just screamed her. And as a total plus, it was on sale. :) I couldn't decide which of two colours to get for her, so I bought two balls of each and let her decide, figuring I'd make her socks out of the unused yarn, or something:
But then I got to thinking...how would this work up if I used both colours to make Undergrowth? I'd have to make the hat bigger than the biggest size given, to fit the liner underneath, but I figured I'd just expand the number of stitches so I can do six repeats of the chart each round instead of five. That'd make the overall shape of the hat less smooth all the way up, but I think that's going to be a good thing - I don't want the shape of the liner underneath showing very much, as it certainly would under a snug-fitting, sleek-lined hat. I was concerned that there won't be a huge contrast between the two colours in some spots, but I figured I'd just have to cast on and give it a whirl in order to see. (Shucky darn!)
I kind of love it a whole lot. There are, however, a few issues:
- It's about a quarter-inch too short. (The liner is 8 1/8" high, the resulting hat is barely 8" high.)
- The circumference is far too small. (The liner is 24" around, the resulting hat is 19" around.)
- The contrast between the two colours isn't pronounced enough to make the pattern really "pop".
The sizing problems can be fixed pretty easily - I can use 3.25mm needles, do 7 repeats of the pattern per round, and add a braid or two at the bottom. The contrast problem, however, may take some doing. I think if I'm strategic about which sections of the variegation of the turquoise I match up with which sections of the variegation of the purple, the pattern will pop a lot more, but I think there are still going to be a few spots where the contrast is pretty bland. However, it's still just so pretty, I can't get over it.
All these modifications, however, are pointless to start experimenting with unless my friend actually likes the basic look of the hat. I have emailed her with pictures and am awaiting her verdict. If she likes it, I will rip out what I've got and re-do it with the modifications I think will work. If she doesn't like it, I will rip it out anyway because I still need the yarn. :) Either way, I don't consider knitting this first experiment as a waste of my time because it was amazingly fun, and it only took about two days. I highly recommend this pattern, it's terrific.