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July 06, 2005

Christmas in July


(I know, I know, I should stop with the weird holiday subject lines. Sorry.)

So I've been catching up on the archives of some new-to-me knitblogs (mamacate is a new favorite), and seeing all the lovely things they made for the holidays last year, and of course it's starting. I'm thinking, "Hmm, maybe this can be the year when I give everyone handmade gifts." Argh. We all know where this road leads. I guess it's better than the alternative, though: for the past few years I've told myself "No Christmas deadlines!" and then been powerless to resist later on, waaay too late to actually get things done. So. This year, I will plan.

Note: If you are expecting a holiday gift from me, you might not want to read any further.

1. Immediate family: Mom's the easiest (as she, you know, actually wears things made out of wool on a regular basis). Last year, I started the Orenburg-style Scarf from the Interweave Staff Scarves Fall 2004 feature (found here--scroll down for a link to the PDF). It's the pink lacy one, although I'm doing it in a dark red as that's more my mom's color. If I remember correctly, I did the start/border and one pattern repeat. I'll have to pull it out and check.

For my brother, I'm planning a hat and scarf in his school football colors. Hopefully it won't be too embarrassing and he'll actually be able to wear it. (He's 15, so this sort of thing seems rather hit-or-miss.) Dad is the hardest of this group. He doesn't really wear sweaters or scarves, nothing but plain cotton socks, and would rather have insulated L.L. Bean type gloves. He does like those warm headband things that go over the ears, so maybe I'll try that, but it seems small. Hmm. Maybe fingerless mitts to match; they could even go under regular gloves to keep his wrists warm.

2. Boyfriend: Here we get into dangerous sweater curse territory. Hmm. We usually exchange a few gifts, so I'll probably knit his main gift and also buy a few things. I've already done socks and a few scarves, so I'm thinking a vest. (That's, um, not quite a sweater, right?) He really likes vests, anyway. Next time I'm at the bookstore I'll take a look through Folk Vests and see if I can find something more "him" than the traditional argyle or cables.

3. Less immediate family: grandparents, aunt, godmother and her mother and sister. (There are others, of course, but those are the ones I definitely want things for.) Grandparents live in Florida, which is a bit tough. I'm thinking a light lacy wrap for my grandmother for when air conditioning is too cold, but I have NO ideas for my grandfather. He's in a motorized chair thing (not quite a wheelchair... you know what I mean) so maybe some sort of bag or something for that? Help??

Aunt: maybe a shawl--I love to knit them, and she's one of the few people I know who actually wears them. Godmother: I'm picturing big fuzzy mittens with some sort of snowman motif (she collects snowmen). Hmm. Her mom: I gave her a scarf last year, so hmm, maybe a lap/couch blanket if I have time. (I was thinking slipper socks, but I realized I have no idea how big her feet are.) Her sister: I'm picturing a "fashion" scarf, maybe something silver and shiny, but soft.

4. Other important people. Boyfriend's parents: for Mom I'm thinking maybe a horseshoe (also known as fishtail) lace scarf, because she likes horses. Hmm. She knits a lot but I've never seen her knit lace. Not sure if that's because she doesn't like knitting it or doesn't like wearing it. For Dad... argh. Dads are hard. Probably the same sort of headband/fingerless mitt set as for my dad. For my roommate: some sort of gray cabled hat/scarf set. Have yet to find a pattern.

5. Important non-people: I figure I'll make a bunch of toys for the cats and dogs in the family. Patterns appreciated, especially for dogs. I'd also like to make something for my boyfriend's new car, but... hmm. What do you knit for a car?

6. Others: I'll make up a bunch of hats and scarves of various sorts to be given as necessary (more distant relatives, friends, gift swaps, etc.).

Whew! I think that covers it! Sorry so long. We'll see how much I actually manage to do... At least I'm starting the madness early this year, and confining it to mostly small projects. That's theoretically an improvement.

Posted by Kat at July 6, 2005 09:53 AM

Christmas started in May for me. I'm also working on knitted gifts for everyone this year as part of my stash reduction efforts. So far it's mostly scarves and a felted jacket for my nephew. I still need some inspiration too.

Knitty has some knitted car gifts: http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEspring05/PATTwheelie.html

Posted by: Kat at July 6, 2005 11:31 AM

Thanks for the sweet words!

You are a smart, smart woman. Last year I swore up and down that I would give only store-bought gifts this year. Then MIL (who is a knitter, and appreciates such things) hinted about socks. And now I have this bee in my bonnet about knitting socks for holiday gifts. And like, you know, it would be great if I had a lot of amputee relatives, because my second sock syndrome situation is really quite desperate. Also Yeti relatives, since I have two (single) enormous socks perfectly sized for yeti feet. But the idea of cranking out a bazillion socks by December...even I don't buy it, and it's my b.s.! Anyway, I admire your organization and foresight. Now stop it, will ya? :)

Posted by: mamacate at July 6, 2005 12:06 PM

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