Friday, November 30, 2007

Warmth in the Dark Days

I have never knit an afghan before. Afghans contain a huge number of stitches. They're large and heavy and not something you can stick in your knitting bag and carry along to piano lessons. Their rows are interminable.

I imagined that I might knit an afghan, someday, when the children are grown and I have plenty of time to knit and no one in particular to knit for. I'd have plenty of time to work on the long rows and contemplate the meaning of eternity.

Some years ago, my parents brought us a blanket from the Lake Country in England. It lives in our living room. In the winter months, it's in constant use. You can drape it over your lap and knit or read cozily. You can lie in front of the fire and wrap yourself in it. You can wrap it around your body and walk around the house when it's freezing outside.

We have only one such blanket for a family of 6.

A couple of months ago, I noticed that our blanket, the perfect winter blanket, is becoming a little worn. It still has a few good years left, but, at some point, it will wear out. What will we do then?

A fire was lit beneath my feet.

I started thinking about knitting a replacement blanket. I had 8 skeins of Peace Fleece worsted in Tundra, a color that reminded me of the blanket. I sifted through pattern stitch books for a suitable pattern. I measured the existing blanket.

I cast on 276 stitches and began knitting in my favorite Moss Diamond pattern.

After working one skein, I realized I needed twice as much yarn as I had. Amazingly, Peace Fleece still had the same dye lot. I also ordered some Glasnost Gold for the fringe.

The pictures were taken after knitting one full pattern repeat and just over 2 skeins of yarn.

The fringe makes me think a lot about weaving in ends, but that's another post.

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