Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Stripe-iness

There is something very satisfying about finishing a pair of socks, even a very simple pair.

Pattern: a variation on my basic stockinette sock pattern
Yarn: Lang Jawoll Color Aktion (75% superwash wool, 25% nylon), colorway 132.0209, less than one skein
Needles: two 12" US 1 (2.5 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: January 22/January 30
Mods: Cast on 65 sts to work a 3x2 rib for the cuff, lengthened the cuff to 2", and lengthened the entire leg length by an inch (for a total of 8")

I'm not sure what it was about this colorway that appealed to me, other than the blue stripes, but these socks are fairly subdued and will be great for work.

I used the reinforcement thread (a spool of which is included inside the skein) for the heel flaps and heel turn but not for the toes. The reason for this is simple: I forgot to do it on the first sock and was too lazy to rip back, so then of course I had to do the second sock to match. I felt I needed it more in the heel area anyway, though, and I'll be watching these socks to see if there's any difference in how they wear. For now, the heel feels a little cushier, and the area of the short rows on the heel aren't as thin as they normally end up for me.

I did like this yarn. It's no different from most superwash/nylon blends, but the skein is extremely generous in its yardage (a plus if you're making man socks!) and very affordable.

I have another FO that was finished last night, but it's still damp from the blocking and really deserves a good photo shoot, so you'll have to wait a day or two for the big reveal (though I'm sure you can guess what it is).

Before I sign off for the evening, I have to thank Kristie for naming me for a "You Make My Day" award. Thanks, Kristie! The way this thing works is that if you're named, you're supposed to name 10 bloggers in turn who make your day. I'm always loathe to single out people this way, because what if you're one of those people who aren't included? I never want to offend anyone, and truly there are more than 10 blogs I read that make my day -- might I suggest you click over to my blogroll and visit a few of them? I promise you won't be disappointed.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Enough Knitting to Cause a Callous

Man oh man, did I have a weekend of knitting. We left for Hidden Valley late Saturday morning. I cast on for my second Jawoll sock in the car and got a good inch of cuff done by the time we got to our friend's house. Then The Mister and the rest of the group went to hit the slopes, and I settled in with a new episode of Cast On, some figure skating, and the yarn for my aunt's sweater. Six hours of knitting later, I found myself with a lovely callous on my right middle finger and about six inches of body:

I had my uncle do some measurements for this sweater on the sly; I gave him very specific instructions to measure a sweater that fits my aunt well when she wasn't home. Based upon the numbers he sent me, it looks like we wear pretty much the same size, so I'll be able to try this sweater on and know if it's knitting up to be the right size.

I'm knitting at a gauge of 5 stitches to the inch and aiming for a 36" chest. I decided to do ribbing instead of hems this time around and to make the body a bit longer. I cast on 192 stitches to start out with (I wanted the bottom to measure 38 inches, but I had to add on two additional stitches to make the 2x2 rib work). After two inches of ribbing, I worked paired decreased at each side for some waist shaping and to get down to 180 stitches. Now I'm at the part where I just knit knit knit until the body is long enough. Boring, yes, but also good movie/TV knitting.

We left pretty early yesterday morning to come home, ran our errands, and relaxed the rest of the day. I decided it was high time I finish my Bird in Hand mittens, so that became my project for yesterday. I'm now decreasing for the hand of the left mitten and should work on the thumb tonight.


On this mitten, I kept my floats a lot shorter than on the first -- no more than four stitches. Part of my reasoning is that I wanted less to catch my ring on when I wear the mittens, but it will be interesting to see if there's any difference in the colorwork in the two mittens as a result.

I really like these mittens and the pattern, but I am so ready to be done knitting worsted weight yarn on size 2 needles. No wonder I have callouses!

Friday, January 25, 2008

The Trifecta

The trio of triplet Baby Surprise Jackets is complete!

Pattern: Baby Surprise Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann
Yarn: Cascade 220 Heathers, color 9461 (green), one skein, and Cascade 220 Wool, color 4002 (charcoal), approximately 1/2 a skein
Needles: 32" US 5 (3.75 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: January 20/January 24 (the fastest of the three!)
Mods: same as the last one -- why mess with what works?

Now I know some of you are going to be saying that this one looks an awful lot like the first one, but I can assure you that while they are similar, they are in fact different shades. Coordinating, but not matching, remember?

The green in this most recent BSJ is the same color I used for my Central Park Hoodie, a limey green heather, and the stripes are most definitely a deep charcoal. You may also notice that the buttonholes are on the opposite side; this last BSJ is for the girl triplet. I may need to add a little touch of femininity to make it just a tad more apparent -- perhaps a little flower sewn to one side? All suggestions are welcome (including from those of you who think I should leave these the way they are!). These jackets need a little wash and block, but other than that, they're ready to go once the triplets arrive!

Last night I decided to go with my instincts and cast on for the Chevron Scarf. (Remember? You saw the yarns I was considering, but no one had any strong opinions.) I think when it's done, it might make me a little dizzy when I look at it for too long, but right now I'm loving it.


I bought this Koigu nearly two years ago in Alexandria, Virginia. It had been sitting in my stash ever since, probably because I could never find a pattern I thought worthy of this sock deliciousness. I'm really going to enjoy wrapping it around my neck (where it won't wear out as fast as it will on my feet).

In other sock news, I must tell you all that I washed my newest Monkeys for the first time the other night, and boy did they bleed! I had a sink full of very turquoise water when I was done, and clearly that wasn't all the dye, because there were blue bleed marks on my drying rack afterwards. As Kristie put it, this was the "tricrapta" for Jitterbug: short yardage, knots, and bleeding dye. I don't think I'll be buying this yarn again.

In happier sock news, my first shipment of the 2008 Rockin' Sock Club arrived today! I won't post any spoilers here for those who haven't received their package yet, but if you must see it, it's here in my Flickr stream. I like it!

Tomorrow we are headed up to the Laurel Highlands for a visit with some friends, so I'll be away from the computer for most of the weekend. I hope I have some adult sweater to show you when I get back!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

A Snowy Day Surprise

After a long day at work, I was anxious to get home but not at all looking forward to shoveling the driveway. Lucky me, I had a package waiting for me that made all the hard labor worth it -- my Vintage Sock Swap package!

My swap spoiler was Courtney, who put together the most wonderful package of goodies. The candle is a yummy, summery melon scent. That candy bar (crystallized ginger in dark chocolate) is going to be mine, all mine, and I'm thinking that the miniature hyacinth pot is going to do a lot to get me out of my "JanuFeb" dumps. What are a little hard to see in that plastic bag are some stunning stitch markers that will be perfect for when I cast on for my aunt's sweater this weekend; I suspect Courtney may have made them herself!

And the socks? Oh, the socks!


They are so thick and squishy -- the perfect socks for these frigid, damp days. The pattern is Child's First Sock in Shell Pattern, one I've knit several times myself and love. The mystery yarn is a darker blue than appears in this photo, with flecks of lighter shades. I adore them!

Thank you so much for everything, Courtney!

Tonight, the finishing of the third BSJ. I'm a mere three rows, two seams, and five buttons away. Expect to see a matching set tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

While The Mister Is Away ...

this knitter will play!

For the rest of the week, I'll be having a flashback to last winter, when The Mister was working out of town during the week. This time around, he's "working" with some guys from the office (if by working you mean hitting the slopes at Wisp), and while I certainly don't like not having him around, I'm making the best use of the time by surrounding myself with wool. First on the agenda is the third and final (for now, anyway) Baby Surprise Jacket, which is turning out to be the fastest one yet. I should have it done by tomorrow.

I managed to make it a mere four days without any socks on the needles after finishing the last pair. I've been trying to finish up projects already on the needles, but I found I needed a small, relatively mindless project for my lunch-hour knitting. Yesterday I cast on for a very plain pair using some Lang Jawoll I bought at Natural Stitches.

That mottling you see around the heel is from the reinforcement thread that I was too lazy to match up in terms of the stripes. This is the first time I've used reinforcement thread, and I'll be interested to see how it ends up affecting the wear of the sock.

The Mister will be back on Friday, and then bright and early Saturday we're headed up to Hidden Valley so he can do some more skiing and we both can spend some time with some friends who live out of town. I am the sole non-skier, so I'll be spending the day casting on for my aunt's sweater and watching some sports on TV. It will be so nice to knit something that not baby-sized for a change!

Finally this evening, I need you help and advice. Does this look like a good combination for a Chevron Scarf?

Monday, January 21, 2008

Seeing Double

Very cold weather and not many plans makes for very productive knitting time. Case in point: I finished the second triplet BSJ:

Pattern: Baby Surprise Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann
Yarn: Cascade 220 Tweed, color 7601 (green), one skein, and Cascade 220 Wool, color 8401 (gray), approximately 1/2 a skein
Needles: 32" US 5 (3.75 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: January 10/January 20
Mods: none, except for changes in my procedure (see below)


For the first sweater, I followed EZ's directions verbatim. They work just fine, but I wasn't satisfied with the fact that the fronts near the button band at the bottom weren't completely identical because of the way the stitches were picked up after working on the center stitches for 10 ridges. Basically one side looked neater because stitches were picked up with the right side facing, whereas for the other side, I picked the stitches up in purl, resulting in a small section where the garter ridge becomes stockinette for a row or two.

For the second sweater, I followed recommendations I found on someone's blog or Ravelry post (I'm sorry I can't remember where and give the credit where it's due). When I got to the point where I was ready to work the center stitches only for 10 ridges, I cut the working yarn, slid the first group of stitches (that weren't going to be worked) to the right needle, rejoined the yarn, and began working back and forth. Once the 10 ridges were complete, I cut the yarn again, slid the end stitches back to the left needle, rejoined the yarn, and worked the next row from the beginning. This allows you to pick up stitches on both sides of the center panel in the same row, from the right side, and creates a much more even look. It also creates a few more ends to weave in, but that's not such a big deal.

The third BSJ was cast on last night and is already well on its way (I've just started stripe 3 of 5). I'll be working on it for the rest of my day off, and I have high hopes of having a completed trio of sweaters by next weekend!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Back from the Dead

This project had been hibernating so long, I practially forgot it was still on the needles. But then we got some frigid weather (today, for instance, it's about 17 degrees F) and my Odessa has really been wearing out, so I decided it was time to finally finish the thing.

Pattern: Shedir by Jenna Wilson (special Breast Cancer Awareness Month edition of Knitty, 2004)
Yarn: Brooks Farm Four Play (50% wool, 50% silk), colorway PB7, less than one skein (approximately 50 g/1.75 oz left)
Needles: 16" US 3 (3.25) Inox circular and Clover bamboo dpns
Started/Completed: February 17, 2007/January 19, 2008
Mods: I omitted rows 45-52 of the chart (skipping to row 53) and substituted a slightly heavier yarn

This was my oldest UFO, probably ever. When I picked it up again this past week, I remembered why I'd put it down in the first place. There's a lot, and I mean a lot, of cabling in this pattern, particularly in the center section. Most of the cables are worked over only two stitches, so I worked most without a cable needle, but having to cable that often is rather hard on the hands. I'm pretty sure I only needed an actual cable needle was for one row that had three-stitch cables that involved working the second stitch on the cable needle before the first; I just couldn't figure out how do it without the extra tool in such a way that it would actually be faster.

I did use a heavier weight of yarn than called for in the pattern, and while this resulted in a cushy, warm hat, it did mess with my measurements. The pattern calls for one ball of Rowan Calmer, which is a DK-weight yarn. I substituted this dreamy worsted weight silk/wool blend that I picked up from the Brooks Farm booth at last year's Pittsburgh knitting festival. The hat fits just fine around my head, but as you can probably tell from the pictures, it's a tad bit long in spite of the fact that I cut out an entire repeat of the preliminary cables. For the time being, I've been wearing it with the brim flipped up -- not the most ideal, because it covers some of the cable work, but I've only really cared about the fact that it's keeping my head and ears warm the past couple of days.


I do love how the decreases are so subtly worked into the cabling that you can't even see them. Clearly, my hat could use a good blocking to get the top to lie more flat.

I may knit this pattern again one day, although next time I'll be sure to use a DK weight yarn.

For those of you who may be thinking about this pattern, I do want to let you know that I came across an error in the pattern. It's something you'll probably realize if you've done cabling before and are paying attention to what the symbols in the chart mean, but I thought I'd point it out nonetheless. The written directions tell you that at the end of certain rows (53, 55, 56, 60, and 70), you will be knitting up to the last stitch and then moving the marker that marks the beginning of the row before that stitch. This is because what was previously the last stitch of the round will be used in the cable that begins the following round. The mistake is that you also need to do this at the end of round 62 in order to work the "twist right" cable at the beginning of round 63. Like I said, you'll probably see this when you get there, but then again you might just be like me and stare at the knitting and the directions and think you're just an idiot because the stitches don't line up as they should until you realize you need to use the last stitch of the round.

Now that this is off the needles, there's only one more UFO tucked away, but I feel less guilty about letting that sit for a while longer. I've still got baby sweaters to knit -- you can expect a report of the next one very soon!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

My Funky Monkeys

Another piece of evidence for the argument that no-purl Monkeys practically knit themselves:

Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A. (winter '06 Knitty)
Yarn: Colinette Jitterbug (100% superwash merino), colorway 85/Jay, one skein (267 m/100 g)
Needles: two 12" US 1 (2.5 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: January 10/January 17
Mods: did three pattern repeats on the leg due to limited yarn yardage; no purls!

It's a shame that this yarn is so pricey and so skimpy on the yardage, because it was a delight to knit with (especially after the last sock yarn). I'm no expert on base yarns, but this seems extremely similar, if not identical, to the base yarn used by Socks That Rock -- on the thicker side for a fingering weight, and with a nice tight twist.

I have no idea why one sock pooled and one spiraled, although I have a suspicion it might have something to do with the two knots I found in the skein in the middle of the second sock. Fortunately it looks like I at least got the same dyelot at the knots; there have been some horror stories on Ravelry about other knitters not only dealing with large quantities of knots but yarn sections that were tied together that were from completely different dyelots.

Whatever the cause of the strange color behavior in my socks, I do like the effect I got with it in the slip-stitch pattern of the heel flaps:


Pretty, no? I quite like these socks. I only wish they were a bit taller, but it turns out that I estimated my yarn usage rather well and ended up only with a small ball of yarn left. These have yet to be blocked (and they could use a good blocking), so I've yet to see whether my skein of Jitterbug will have the property other Ravelers have complained about: dye in the wash water.

Considering I can get the same yarn feel along with more yardage and less cost from a skein of STR, I think that's what I'll be sticking with in the future.



Last night's meeting of the Hurricane Knitters was just what I needed after an extremely stressful day at work. I did indeed work on my second mitten and am now ready to start the hand/thumb. I have a long weekend ahead, and I'm planning on using it to work on several WIPs. Perhaps I'll even resurrect some UFOs ... we shall see!

ETA: Help a knitter out, will ya? If you're on Ravelry, go vote for my friend WeirdyPants, who's been nominated for a Bobby!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Calling All Fiber Fantatics

This is your regular bi-monthly reminder that tomorrow night is the third-Wednesday-of-the-month meeting of the Hurricane Knitters at the Waterworks Barnes & Noble, starting about 7 p.m.

I'm going to be bringing my Bird in Hand mittens. For some reason, even though it only took me two or three days to finish the first mitten, this


is as far as I've gotten on the second. I'd like to be able to wear these while it's still winter, so I think a break from the BSJ action is warranted.

Hope to see you tomorrow!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Practice Makes ...

Well, not perfect, certainly. But better: Behold my second attempt at spindle spinning, done over the course of a couple of hours last night:

You can see it all got a little wonky toward the end there with some underspun portions, but trust me when I tell you that it was much more even at the beginning. I was certainly able to handle the spindle much better and no longer needed to "park and draft" to spin. I'm still struggling with adding more fiber, though some of my joins were better than others.

I was excited to pick up the spindle again after Jen let me try out her beautiful wheel over the weekend (we were talking fiber while the boys were playing video games). I felt a little bad about ruining her bobbin of very nice looking singles with my slubby mess, but she assured me she didn't mind. I will say that her wheel is quite beautiful and she was extremely nice to let me test drive it!

I'm still not sure if there's a wheel purchase in my immediate future. I'm going to wait until after my spinning class at the festival, once I've got the mechanics down a little better. I'm pretty sure that if I do buy one, it will be a single treadle. I just don't think I'm coordinated enough to manage two treadles in addition to what I have to do with my hands.

Lest you think I've spent all my time playing with roving, I present you with evidence that I have still been knitting:

The beginning of BSJ #2, which as you can see is being worked in the same striping pattern as the first one. I worked on this on Saturday afternoon while finally watching La Vie en Rose (I had to do something I could do mostly without looking; my French is not good enough to go without subtitles).

Oh, and I finished my first Jitterbug Monkey.


Mmmm, so nice and squishy and soft!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

One Triplet Down ...

Dear me, that title sounds bad, doesn't it? What I mean to say is that the knitting for the first of the triplets is done (and modeled very kindly by our lava lamp):

Pattern: Baby Surprise Jacket by Elizabeth Zimmermann
Yarn: Cascade 220 Tweed (green), color 7601, one skein, and Cascade 220 Wool (brown), color 9465, approximately 1/2 a skein
Needles: 32" US 5 (3.75 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: January 3/January 10
Mods: none

What can I say? This knit is not only fast and fun, it's an adorable baby sweater (and trust me when I tell you it looks a lot better on a baby than it does on a lava lamp). The pattern was much easier to follow the second time around, mostly because I knew what to expect. I slipped the first stitch on each row, as EZ recommends, and I just love the smooth edge that resulted.

The next sweater, for the other boy triplet, is going to use the same green and a light gray for the stripes. I haven't yet figured out the colors for the girl triplet's sweater, but all three are going to have the same buttons (somehow I managed to buy three sets of the same type -- unheard of!).

This next picture gives you a better idea of the striping, and it reminds me strangely of Beaker.

I'm going to cast on for the second sweater tonight. The garter stitch has reeled me in!

Oh, and Yvonne was right: After the Noro, er, experience, I couldn't resist the siren call of the no-purl Monkey.


Ahhhh. That's better.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

No Dice

Apparently my mention of the Knitting Gnomes made them disappear and, sadly, the Baby Surprise Jacket did not get finished last night, nor did I get to watch my movie (I think the nearly hour-long phone call with my best friend and watching the election returns may have had something to do with it as well). A few more rows to knit and a wee bit of finishing await me tonight.

I did manage to finish my Noro socks today, yet another fraternal pair:

Pattern: a variation on my standard stockinette recipe
Yarn: Noro Kureyon Sock Yarn (70% wool, 30% nylon), colorway S92, one skein (with a good 35 grams leftover)
Needles: two 12" US 1 (2.5 mm) Addi Turbo circs
Started/Completed: December 30, 2007/January 9, 2008
Mods: cast on an additional stitch to allow for a 3x2 rib in the longer cuff (later decreased away) and continued slip-stitch pattern of heel flap through the heel turn for added durability

I've got to be honest with you, folks. I am not impressed with this yarn. The only thing that I like about my experience knitting with it was the color and its subtle changes. The actual knitting experience was not what you'd call pleasurable. First of all, this yarn is rough. As in gave me calluses rough. It's also a singles yarn, so there were fuzzy thick bits near every color transition, and it constantly twisted up on itself. I was also not very pleased to encounter two knots in the skein while knitting the second sock alone; it's because of the second knot that the second sock I knit is actually two rows shorter than the first (I did not want to have to weave in two more ends right at the end of the toe). I know that three knots are the so-called industry standard, but I've only ever encountered one in a skein before. There's still a full third of this skein left, so who knows how many more knots might still be inside.

If I had to pick a word other than rough to decribe this yarn, I'd probably call it sticky -- as in it sticks to itself. This might be good if you're knitting a colorwork sweater with steeks, but for a sock, not so much. The stitches in the knit fabric are not even; there are even places that look like holes or ladders where the stitches decided to stretch out in the middle. The socks are soaking in a sink full of lukewarm water right now, so it remains to be seen whether the fabric will even out.

I'm afraid that I can't give a full review of this yarn until I've worn the socks a few times and can tell you how it holds up, but I promise to do so when I'm able to. In the meantime, I can convincingly say that I am not in any rush to run out and buy more of this sock yarn, or any other Noro yarn, for that matter. I'm going to thank my fingertips for putting up with me during these socks by finally knitting with my Jitterbug. Can you guess what pattern I'm returning to once again?

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Gnomes?

There must be gnomes at work in my knitting area; that's the only possible explanation for how quickly this Baby Surprise Jacket has knit up. It's even resembling an actual sweater!


I'm guessing watching some good movies while knitting has made this move at lightening speed. I'm probably going to finish it tonight (provided this evening's feature proves conducive), so expect a finish object report tomorrow -- maybe even a twofer, if I can finish up the second Noro sock as well!

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Keep On Keepin' On

Wednesday's meeting of the Hurricane Knitters was a lot of fun in spite of the headache that sent me home earlier than usual. I started my second Bird in Hand mitten and got to the first cuff chart before calling it a night. The real highlight of the evening, however, was the spinning lesson Yvonne gave me. She is a great teacher -- take a look at my first "yarn"!

I definitely need more practice, but I understand the process much better now than I did when I was playing on my own. After this success, I signed up for the spinning class at the Pittsburgh Knit and Crochet Festival that's coming up next month. The class covers spinning with both a spindle and a wheel. There will be Babe wheels to practice on, which are not among the wheels I'm considering, but they should at least give me an idea of the feel of wheel spinning. I waver between being really excited about spinning and not knowing why I'd want to spin at all (mostly because it would take time away from knitting!), so I'm not yet sure if I want to buy a wheel and I think experiencing what it's like will help me decide. I have, of course, been doing some research, and at the moment if I had to choose I'd lean towards a Lendrum original. It's not the cheapest option, but so many of the reviews I've read seem to say that a Lendrum is great for both beginners and experienced spinners, so it could last me a long, long time. However, I'd love to hear some ideas and opinions from those of you who spin!

In the meantime, when I'm not thinking about spinning, the baby knitting continues apace. Thursday evening I cast on for the first of the Baby Surprise Jackets for the triplets:

Hooray for using up stash yarn! The green is Cascade 220 Tweed that I picked up at the big Knit One sale last summer, and the brown is the last skein leftover from the Seamless Hybrid. This is great, relatively mindless knitting -- viva la garter stitch!

I've got to knit a little something for myself, too, you know, so here's the first Noro sock, completed last night:


This is my first Noro experience and I have to say that I can see what all the fuss is about as far as the color changes go, but the actual knitting with it is not so wonderful. It's very rough and, being a singles yarn, there's a little thick-and-thin action going on that makes the fabric not at all uniform. I've heard that the yarn does soften up with washing, so we shall see whether this one skein of sock yarn proves to be a gateway drug and turns me into a Noro addict. If it softens enough, I might have to be a complete copycat and knit myself a Lady E to keep.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

2008: Year of the Baby

In a year that is bound to see a great deal of knitting for many babies (none of them my own, to The Mister's great relief), it is only fitting that this should be the first Finished Object of 2008:



Pattern: cardigan from the Pea Pod Baby Set by Kate Gilbert
Yarn: Knit Picks Shine Sport (60% pima cotton, 40% modal), colorway Green Apple, approximately three skeins (150 grams/330 yards)
Needles: one 24" US 5 (3.75 mm) Addi Turbo circular
Started/Completed: December 24, 2007/January 1, 2008
Mods: grafted rather than sewed shoulder seams; picked up an additional 20 sts for the collar
Recipient: baby Macedonia

This cardigan turned out to be just as adorable -- but much faster -- than the first one. Because the parents-to-be are in the dark about the sex of the little one (who is due to arrive this month), I chose a cheerful green color that will do for a boy or a girl. The buttons likewise are a very gender-neutral pearlized white.

The experience knitting this sweater for a second time couldn't have been more pleasurable. Having knit the sweater once before, I knew the pattern well and was able to dive right in without having to think through any particular parts. I also was able to conserve yarn by planning ahead and using longer cast on and bind off tails that could be used for seaming.

I'm still undecided about making the matching hat. There's plenty of yarn left (nearly two full skeins), but I just wasn't completely happy with the first attempt. I may just use the leftover yarn and do an Umbilical Cord hat or a simple baby beanie. Thoughts, oh wise readers?

Now that this baby's knitting is done, up next are the coordinating Baby Surprise Jackets for our cousins' triplets, who we're hoping won't arrive until the end of the month at the very earliest. I am not in a great hurry to finish all three sweaters in time for their birth, because I know it will likely be a while before they're big enough to wear them, but I have a feeling that knitting the same pattern three times in a row is going to get a bit too monotonous for me, so I'm planning on breaking up the series with the other two baby sweaters left to knit. If I can have all five done by March, I'll be happy -- and then I can return to knitting big people sweaters.

Tonight is knitting with the Hurricane Knitters and the long-awaited return of Jenn's dpn. The snow won't stop us this time!