"But, really, why does anyone create? You feel a... a restlessness inside, a need to make something new, something no one has ever seen before. You want to add to the beauty and the richness of the world with a gift, an offering that is uniquely yours. It's an act of selfishness and generosity, all rolled into one."

-- Bruce Coville,
The Last Hunt

Friday, December 27, 2013

Now that the presents are opened...

Both of my parents have birthdays the same week as Christmas, so December tends to be a busy month. I always get each of them an individual birthday present, and often a joint Christmas present for both of them. Now I can finally show the things I've made recently.

First, my dad's birthday present:

Yeah, another selfie, but again it was the best way to photograph the hat. I used this pattern, which was my first project with cables. I'm really quite proud of how it came out. It's pretty big on me, obviously, but that's because I made the men's size. It fits my dad just right.

For my mom's birthday present, I made the Jeweled Waterfall pendant in her favorite colors, purple and pink.

The threads are Lizbeth size 40 in colors 177 Elderberry Jam and 619 Baby Pink. The pink beads are from a necklace I bought at a yard sale a couple of years ago and dismantled; the color turned out to be a perfect match for the pink thread. There are also purple delica seed beads that go well with the purple thread, some round silver seed beads, and of course the purple teardrop. And then it turned out I also had some pink ribbon in my stash that was just the right shade as well. Actually, every single component of this necklace came from my stash. Never let it be said that I don't use what I have (even though I do keep buying more).

Finally, although I did get them a larger Christmas present as well, I decided to tat something using one of the brass rings left over from the creamer bag project.

This is Jane Eborall's "Snowflake 1 on Ring", although I know Jane would be the first to say it's a star, not a snowflake. Well, you know, a rose by any other name and all that. (And Jane does come from the same town as the guy who wrote that, too. And I worked last night and haven't been to bed yet today, so I am rambling.) Anyway, whatever you call it, it's a lovely pattern, and very quick and easy to work. For a new tatter, it would make an excellent first project with beads. I used delicas in gold and white, and I simply ran the hanging thread through the bead at the very top. The thread is DMC size 20 in white. I really like the elegant simplicity of the white and gold.

I was going to tat my sister something, too, but I ran out of time so I bought her some New Mexican food instead-- a couple of jars of red and green chile and a box of biscochitos (New Mexican sugar cookies flavored with cinnamon and anise). She lived here for several years, too. Once you've lived in NM, no matter where else you go, the chile addiction never quite goes away, and you can't get New Mexican style chile-- especially green-- anywhere else. I'll do the tatting project for her birthday instead.

Having successfully completed one knitting project with cables, I have now embarked on a cable and rib sweater for myself. I've made a pretty decent start on the back of it, but I'm too tired to photograph it just now. It's looking good, though, and I'll show it to you in the next post.


  1. Your gifts are amazing! So pretty. The knotting looks very professional and the tatting - well, your tatting is - as always - wonderful.
    Fox : )

  2. Very impressive! Beautifully done! I thought the pattern was kind of 'advanced', especially since the cables are 'offset', meaning it's not a traditional cable. (And the term 'cable cast on' might have confused beginners, and wasn't explained. ) Did you use double pointed needles for the decrease rounds? I'm sure your dad was pleased with it! I'm intrigued about your new project!

    You've been so busy with all your projects! I really don't know how you manage, with your demanding job. Love the necklace and the snowflake with the 'ring' from the creamer project!

    1. Well, sometimes ignorance really is bliss. I didn't know there was anything unusual about these cables, so it didn't seem like any bigger challenge than "normal" cables. LOL, I just ignored the cable cast on and used the long-tail method, which I find the easiest.

      As for the job, I usually don't get to do anything on the days I work. The trick is having four days off every week.

  3. Miranda's dad here. Needless to say, we loved our gifts! I've showed the hat to several knitters, one of whom especially praised the cable work. And the fact that Miranda used things she had on hand for the necklace shows that she did learn something from us!

  4. Squijuum, Have a Great New Year! Hope your hair is growing back for 2014. : )
    Your good buddy,