Monday, April 25, 2011

Tiny Purple Hats

My friend and knitting guild colleague Jeannie is involved with the Purple Hat Project at our local Mary Bridge Children's Hospital. Mary Bridge has a program to help prevent Shaken Baby Syndrome. The parents of every newborn will receive a DVD and a book that explains this very difficult time for new parents. And, with help from local knitters, each new baby will receive a purple hat to reinforce the message. Jeannie is collecting hats sized for preemies and newborns in any and every shade of purple. Hat do not have to be solid purple; they just have to have some shade of purple in them somewhere. Size does not matter too much; there is a head for every hat, as the saying goes.

At a recent guild knitting retreat, we were given some new yarns to play with. I chose Cascade Pacific, a blend of superwash wool and acrylic, in lavender. Truth told, it is not my favorite yarn to knit with; it feels plastic-y in my hands. That said, it is very soft and washes up well, so it is good for baby clothes. I actually made four hats from one 100-gram skein but already gave the first one to Jeannie.

I hope some baby likes his or her little hat.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Off Topic

Periodically I veer away from knitting to something else. Last week was wine.

First, Chilean Pinot Noirs and Syrahs. My husband, a wine economist and blogger, was invited to participate in an online discussion of these wines. You can read about it here. Our cat, Mooch, figured out that Jeni was going to be his new best friend. Fortunately, Mooch does not mooch from the table and was perfectly happy to sit in Jeni's lap and be petted.

The second event was Malbec World Day. During our visit to Argentina earlier this year, we drank some fabulous Malbecs. Making a selection from our cellar was difficult, as you can read here. But I was happy with the choice (but I would have been happy with any of the options).

My next post will have some knitting it in. Promise.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Knitting But Not Finishing

So it has been a while since I have posted a finished project. That's because I have not finished a project recently, other than a log cabin wash cloth. I learned that technique at a recent retreat of the Puyallup Knitting Guild. One reason that I have not finished something is that I couldn't resist starting a couple of new projects

However, I have been looking through some knitting books, some old, some new. One of my favorites among the new books is Margaret Stove's Wrapped in Lace. The beauty of this book is not just the patterns — don't get me wrong, the patterns are gorgeous — but the information about techniques, design processes, traditions, conservation, and more. This book, like Margaret Stove's other books, is for the thinking knitter.

I also have been looking through a classic, Knitting Counterpanes by Mary Walker Phillips. While I am unlikely to knit a bedspread, the elements of the counterpanes can easily be used in other designs. This also is a book for the thinking knitter who can admire the designs of earlier knitters and adapt them to contemporary knitting.