Sunday, September 25, 2016

Ballots and a Basic Beanie in Blues for Bill

Last night our absentee ballots arrived in our inboxes from the State of Maine. Next week we will print them out at the library, cast our votes, and post them back across the pond.

Also last night while listening to some beautiful Bach cantatas, I finished Bill's blue beanie.

I used two strands of sock/fingering weight yarn held together and US size 6 circulars (16 inch). I cast on 84 stitches, joined, did a couple of inches of k2,p2 rib, then knit around and around until it was tall enough to start crown decreases. I did the standard gradual decrease by knitting even on all the even numbered rounds and decreasing by 7 stitches on each odd numbered round of the crown section. There were 7 decreases in each decrease round because I opted to work in a multiple of 12 and 84 divided by 12=7. So to begin the decreasing, I knit 10 and then knit 2 together around the hat. Next round was even. Then the next decrease round was knit 9 and then knit 2 together around. I kept on knitting one less stitch before knitting 2 together in each subsequent decrease round, switching to double pointed needles when the remaining stitches did not fit around the circs, until I had done knit 2 then knit 2 together around. I did one more round even and then I cut the yarn, leaving a long tail. I threaded the tail into a tapestry needle and ran it through the live stitches on the needles, cinching the top closed.

There is a chilly wind blowing at the moment, so another hat will be useful. We were talking the other day about how convenient it is to have various hats for various kinds of weather. We were out in wind and rain at the time and when we got home, we both took off the hats we were wearing outside and set them aside to dry before pulling dry hats on. We have to go out for a bit in the morning and rain is forecast, so our hats will come in handy once again. We are waiting to see what the remnants of storm Karl will do. If he merges with a regular low pressure system things will track one way, I guess, and if he doesn't, we'll be experiencing a bit more of him. Whatever happens, some pretty strong winds are on the way and some amount of rain.

My toes were feeling the chill this morning, so I was happy to be able to rummage around in my small winter sock drawer and pull out these old friends.

I made these in Maine--scrappy socks crocheted with mohair added to the wool for the toes. As I recall I had one skein of the greyish blue sock yarn, which I used for the foot. The toes are done with blue mohair and purple laceweight wool. The cuffs were made from scrap wool and have felted some now. The afterthought heels were done with two strands of scrap sock wool held together. At the time I deliberately let the toe sections (which is where I started--these are toe-up) be a little bigger than the foot section because I knew the mohair would tighten up and felt a little bit as these were washed, and that would shrink the toe sections, as it did. Always nice to wiggle my toes around in fuzzy, warm, cushy handmade socks :-)

Cosy hats and socks--still more reasons to love autumn! Hope your weekend is cosy too!

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