FO Friday: First Finish of 2014

When I was putting together the collage of all my finishes in 2013 I realised I'd never posted about the awesome Take Heart toque I knit from Issue 7 of Pom Pom Quarterly. Perhaps another time? I'm too excited with the fact that I already have a project hot off the needles in 2014, what I'm calling a Boyish Toque:

Pattern: Phildar Issue No. 60 (all men's patterns - French magazine purchased on my last visit to Paris) Yarn: Debbie Bliss Paloma in charcoal and ruby Yardage: Approximately 75 yards Click the photo to go to my Ravelry project notes.

Pattern: Phildar Issue No. 60 (all men's patterns - French magazine purchased on my last visit to Paris)
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Paloma in charcoal and ruby
Yardage: Approximately 75 yards
Click the photo to go to my Ravelry project notes.

The toque was originally meant for my DH for Christmas, but as you can see, there's no way it's going to fit an adult! In fact, a little blocking will be in order to see if I can't get this stretched out a little bigger for Mr. H. And in retrospect, I'm not sure what Jordan would have thought of the little elfin point to the top of the hat anyway!

Boyish toque - rear view.jpg

The Debbie Bliss Paloma yarn is a 60% alpaca, 40% merino mix and spun and processed to a light, airy, super bulky chainette. It was lovely to work with, but even with 6mm and 7mm needles, I'm surprised it came out so tiny - especially as the pattern called for bulky, not super bulky yarn.

I love the way Mr. H's ears stick out from under this hat - such an imp!

I love the way Mr. H's ears stick out from under this hat - such an imp!

The only modification I made to the pattern was to cut out two stitches and knit it in the round. Yes, weirdly the pattern was written for the hat to be knit flat and then seamed. Is this a French colourwork thing? Maybe someone can let me know in the comments.

Ready to take on 2014!

Ready to take on 2014!

I enjoyed the colourwork though - it's been a while! But it's now making me think I need to make a colourwork hat for myself. I happen to have something in the stash that would be perfect. Uh-oh. New Year and start-itis already seems to have me in it's grip...

Half-term and a new hat

My little guy's second half-term is now at and end, thank goodness. Not that I don't think a little break in the school routine isn't a good thing, but having two weeks off (as opposed to one, like other British schools) definitely starts to seem a little excessive in the second week when you can tell the kids are feeling the absence of routine as painfully as the parents are.

If there's one thing I kept solidly to over these last few weeks though, it's been bedtime. In our world, allowing bedtime to be disrupted over two weeks just means that it's going to be at least another two weeks once school starts to get things onto an even keel again. Besides, with my mom visiting and the little guy tiring us out with activities during the day, it's meant that we can relax with a glass of wine once he's been tucked in and it's lights out!

And of course being me, that's meant relaxing with a glass of wine AND my knitting! I've been working pretty steadily on this:

 WIP:  Bedouin Bag in Three Sizes  by Nora J. Bellows. I'm doing the smallest size. 

WIP: Bedouin Bag in Three Sizes by Nora J. Bellows. I'm doing the smallest size. 

I am completely in love with the colour. Coupled with the bright and happy chartreuse, turquoise and olive print fabric I found to line it with, this has the potential of being my go-to bag this summer.

The only problem with the bag in it's pre-felted state, especially now that I'm even farther along in the knitting, is that it is MASSIVE and can no longer easily be taken anywhere (double-stranding five skeins of Cascade 220 - so far! - will do that). Not that I've let that stop me mind you, but I did decide at the beginning of the week to take along something a little smaller. I cast on Monday evening for the alpaca pom pom beanie kit that I bought at Unravel and by Tuesday evening I was weaving in the ends:

Pattern:  Pom Pom Beanie  by The TOFT Alpaca Shop   Yarn:  Toft Alpaca Chunky Weight Alpaca  in Steel   Yardage (for the Pre-Process Stashdown 2013): 95 yards    Click the photo to link to my Ravelry project notes

Pattern: Pom Pom Beanie by The TOFT Alpaca Shop
Yarn: Toft Alpaca Chunky Weight Alpaca in Steel
Yardage (for the Pre-Process Stashdown 2013): 95 yards 
Click the photo to link to my Ravelry project notes

It didn't matter that the weather warmed up as soon as I finished it - I wore it anyway. That's how much I love this hat. I love the look of it, the nice, snug fit (especially over my ears!), the versatile colour and especially, ESPECIALLY the alpaca fur pom pom that came in the kit.

Thanks to my mom for capturing these great pics while we were visiting the Tower of London this week.

Thanks to my mom for capturing these great pics while we were visiting the Tower of London this week.

I've been surprised at the number of toques that I've seen in London this winter, but even more surprised by the number of them that have been sported with ginormous pom poms on them. Being Canadian I knew I could rock that look but I'm really happy to have it bring me a little London style too!