Pattern: Annis by Susanna IC
Yarns: hand-me-down turquoise wool from my grandmother, teal handspun, Malabrigo lace in pink and blue, dyed-by-me coned silk.
Needles: US 8/5.0 mm and occasionally, US 10/6.0 mm.
Started/finished: 11 June - 6 July 2010.
Comments/mods: I picked this pattern because I wanted something that would go pretty quickly but not be too boring. I chose so well! The pattern is very simple, but the resulting shape is just gorgeous. It's also vastly adaptable - I forsee doing a number of these with various edgings from my stitch dictionaries, and there's at least one mega-version in Jaggerspun wool/silk on the list for me somewhere down the line.
Since I did something a bit different for each one, I'm going to go in order.
Annis #1 - by the book.
I did this one as written, with the exception of using US 8/5.0 mm needles and a backwards loop cast-on to start with (same cast-on used for all). Finished this one in three days when Himself took off for his bike ride. For Boo's Mon/Friday nursery teacher/girls' occasional babysitter. Details on Ravelry
Annis #2 - handspun, shrunken
This one is for Boo's main nursery teacher, who earned the only handspun version by being a knitter herself, and complimenting me on Boo's Nemo set early on in our relationship. Sadly, she is not coming back next year, so I wanted to make her something really nice. I cut out two of the 12 stitch repeats and the nupps because I was worried about running out of yarn. I had plenty left (which, of course, I have no idea what to use for now), but so be it. Did some work on this on the beach in Cornwall while the girls climbed on the rocks. Six days - clearly I was too busy eating ice cream and lying in the sun. Ravelry details here.
Annis #3 - pink Malabrigo
For Devil's teaching assistant, a lovely young lady who is also leaving at the end of the year. I went back to the pattern without mods for this as well. And as I slogged along, I threw out the idea of doing any more nupps on these things. Too slow! Four days to finish, 32 g of yarn, Ravelry.
Annis #4 - beads!
For Devil's main teacher, whom she has absolutely adored. Mrs. A is having her first baby in October, and I wanted to make her something nice for the fall. Pale blue Malabrigo, blue seed beads instead of nupps, correct number of repeats, but I made the short rows longer (fewer of them) to try and speed things up. Three days, 30 g, details.
Annis #5 - red dyed coned silk
Several years ago I ended up with a lot of coned machine knitting yarn. I got rid of most of it when we moved, but held on to one cone of natural colored laceweight that was labeled silk. I'm not sure it actually is silk, but it dyed with acid dyes, so it's some kind of protein fiber. In retrospect, I should have used smaller needles for this one, because it ended up pretty holey on the 5.0 mm needles. Oh well. No time to go back and redo! No nupps, longer short rows. For Boo's other nursery teacher, who is also not returning. Five days, and I think I may get rid of the rest of the cone, even though there's a ton left. I didn't like knitting with it. On Ravelry.
Annis #6 - mini-version
I had 22 g of blue Malabrigo left, so I decided to try and squeeze out on more mini-Annis. Took out four repeats, yarn overs instead of nupps, and I still had to bind off a few rows early. But it blocked out to reasonable size. This is for Dev's reading teacher, who broke her foot very badly a couple of weeks ago and has decided to retire. Three days, 20 g, Ravelry.
Blocking: all of these were soaked in cool water and Soak, and spun out in the washing machine before being pinned out. I threaded blocking wires through each of the points on the bottom edge, pinned the top two corners and stretched the whole thing out.
I tried pinning the top edge on the first two, but found that it was unneccessary - just stretching out the lace part smoothed everything out. They do tend to be a bit on the narrow side however, so I probably could have gotten a bit more width if I'd futzed around with the top edge. So be it.
I'm hoping that the vast exodus of teachers has nothing to do with my kids, but it is unfortunate that it's all coming this year. The girls have loved the school and, while they're looking forward to summer break, I suspect they're going to miss everyone a great deal.