Yesterday I started making a list of items to pack when I travel for the holidays, and it reminded me of those memory games we used to play. You know, the ones that go, “I’m going on a picnic, and I’m bringing….” followed by items which progress through the alphabet. It also reminded me of a song from French class (originally intended to help teach possessive adjectives) that goes, “Moi, je fais ma valise rose/Dedans je mets beaucoup de choses…” which roughly translates to, “I pack my pink suitcase/In it I put lots of things…” and then lists a number of items which mostly should never actually go in a suitcase.
My mental list of items for my (sadly, not pink) suitcase starts off like this:
An Azel pullover for the store (and the size 13 needles to go with it — there’s nothing worse than being ready to cast on, and finding that you don’t have the needles). It’s going to be a beautiful rich brown shade of Plymouth Encore Mega. Once I stuff all that super bulky yarn into my suitcase, there may not be much room left for the rest of these items, but we’ll see.
A baby sweater with little fishies on it. Yes, the Goldfish sweater continues! Brooks even did a few rows of it over the weekend, and it’s looking snazzy, if I do say so myself. We’re just about ready to separate for the sleeves, which means I should also pack some stitch holders. Maybe I can return with a finished sweater! (Don’t get your hopes up.)
Chocolate. So much chocolate. Most of my Christmas gifts for people this year are chocolate, some homemade, and some Bixby bars. The question is, will I be forced to eat some (or all) of it in order to prevent it from melting as I travel? I do not want melted chocolate on my knitting.
My suitcase will also contain a sweater that needs mending, a sourdough starter nicknamed “Starty”, and a copy of The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. Perhaps also half a cowl, if I can’t finish knitting it this week. And that’s not to mention the obvious — clothes, toiletries, warm winter gear… I think I’m gonna need a bigger suitcase!
On a more serious note, I want to thank you all for supporting Over The Rainbow Yarn this year! We so appreciate our lovely fiber community, and we couldn’t do it without you. Wishing you happy holidays, and safe travels! (May none of your needles fall down between the airplane seats.)
“3 Summer Tops for Staying Cool Despite Rising Global Temperatures”
But while I may one day write those posts (seriously or in jest), I think I have to instead share with you a realization that struck me yesterday: THANKSGIVING IS NEXT WEEK. I know, I know. I was shocked, too. Because right on the heels of Thanksgiving, we have… Holiday Gift Season.
I wanted to make all of my gifts this year. I still might make all of my gifts, because I haven’t actually bought (or made) anyone anything yet. (Sorry, Mom!) My only hope now lies with the hero of quick knitted gifts: Super Bulky (yarn, that is — there isn’t actually a caped crusader named Super Bulky, alas). Super bulky is the procrastinator’s best friend, and also happens to be ideal for our chilly Maine winters. Here is a rundown of a few items I’m considering for my nearest and dearest — maybe they’ll work for yours, too.
This is the Big Chunky Comfy Hat by Erica Kempf Broughton, and it would be divine in Malabrigo Rasta. Add a pompom (homemade or store bought), and you’ve got the hippest hat north of Brooklyn. Any hat done in super bulky will knit up in a couple of hours, and look wicked trendy. Always wanted to learn to make a pompom? Come in this week and say the magic password “fluffy” tell me you saw this post — I’ll do a little free tutorial for you. Pompoms also make fun holiday ornaments and keychain embellishments.
The Drop Stitch Cowl by Abi Gregorio will always be at the top of my gift list. I recently had one of the best experiences a knitter can have — I saw my sister wearing a Drop Stitch Cowl that I made for her 3 years ago. She still has it! And wears it! And loves it! She will get more knit gifts.
This cowl is easy, and great for showing off luxurious solid color yarns, or subtle tonal skeins. I could see this as a one-skein wonder in Berroco Macro, but it would work nicely with any of our super bulky options.
The Azel Pullover by Heidi May is at the top of my to-knit list. Ideally, I’ll get to cast on later this week, and should be done before December 1st. It comes in adult sizes, you guys. This cozy item is not just for adorable, ridiculously stylish children. Paired with boots and jeans or leggings, this is a great gift for teens and adults alike. While a slightly bigger time investment that a hat or cowl, the Azel Pullover is still one of the fastest knits out there, and is super simple — great results with minimal effort. We’ve been suggesting Plymouth Yarns Encore Mega and Encore Mega Colorspun for an inexpensive and machine washable project.
It’s not too late to knit gifts for your loved ones (or for yourself, if you’re an overachiever and feeling calm about the holidays). Grab your size 15 needles and a skein or two of super bulky, and settle in with a good movie — you’ll have a finished item before you know it!