Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Mystery No Longer

Last year I discovered the website Craftsy and their "deal of the day." They have many daily deals, ideal for a multitude of crafts. For us crocheters and knitters they offer a different special discount on yarn every day. I have purchased way more yarn from them than I should, very rarely with specific projects in mind. Between that and Knit Picks' insane awesome selection of sock yarn, my stash is just really getting ridiculous. The discounts are pretty good, and they offer some pretty nice yarns (this is where most of my stash of Cascade comes from, in fact).

At the end of each month, Craftsy has a "mystery box" deal. Basically, it's just a skein or two from the leftovers of the month's daily deals, along with a few other notions. I have mostly been pretty good about not getting these (and the one time I did, it worked out that one of the skeins was of a yarn I had bought from a previous deal, in the same dye lot and everything). But when they announced the December mystery box, I could not resist. It arrived this past week and I am pleased to say I managed to hit the jackpot with this one. 

Here's what it contained:

One skein of Shepherd Worsted by Lorna's Laces. It's a nice thick 100% wool. The colorway is called "Liberty." I am sure you can guess why. This might make an awesome patriotic decoration for a few people in my family that I can think of. Maybe a star-shaped pillow? I wonder how well it felts? Hmm. I sense an experiment brewing here.

There were also these lovelies:

A really gorgeous pair of size US 6 straight needles from Lantern Moon. They are rosewood and feel really nice. I haven't used any of Lantern Moon's needles or hooks before but these are so beautiful and feel so nice that I am really looking forward to trying them out. 

In fact, they are just the right size for this:

I squeed just a little when I pulled these skeins out of the box. This is Epiphany by Cascade Yarns. It is a mostly Alpaca blend with a little silk and cashmere in there as well. It is so soft to the touch. Feels like a little bit of heaven. The colorway (#1307) is a lovely rusty red that I couldn't quite capture completely with the camera. I have no idea what I am going to make with this. Likely a gift, because it is definitely too nice a yarn to leave in my care. But oh do I look forward to the project that uses it!

So those were all happy surprises to find in my mailbox to kick the year off. They definitely got me excited about my crafting! I hope I can keep this excitement up throughout the year. My hope is that I manage not to let my projects get to a place where they overwhelm me and I lose my joy in the yarn. I got a bit of that last year and I didn't like it one bit.

As far as my projects, I am plugging away on that scarf. I did some math and figured out if I can get one pattern repeat a week done from here on out, I will finish it a few weeks ahead of my friend's birthday. That actually works out to only about six rows a day. This doesn't sound like much now, and considering that on a day where I actually do get to do a chunk of knitting I can get three times that (or more) accomplished, I have some hope that I will manage to get this done on time and still manage my other bigger projects. 

I also started blanket number one for the year. I was pleasantly surprised to look at the pattern again and realize it calls for a giant hook (N). Here is what I got done this past weekend:

The solid color stripe pattern will continue for a few more rounds and then there will be more magic with granny squares for the border. It's a very interesting construction. My favorite part is that it doesn't actually require any sewing together of squares. That's a big win in my book. I am very excited to see the final result on this one.

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