I caught a bad cold last week and spent most of the weekend snoozing and blowing my nose. You know you're sick when you don't have the energy to knit! I worked on the charcoal sweater a little more - now it is two sleeves and three inches of body. Charcoal stockinette is not a dynamic photo subject, so I will spare you.
I put the sweater on a temporary hold yesterday to start on a special request project. As you can imagine, the members of the von Stashenskeins family all have hand-knit Christmas stockings. M's is dark green with cables and it is pretty but it has squeaky white acrylic fluff around the top and it is kind of small. Every year when I pull out the Christmas decorations I think I should knit her a new one, but by then my last-minute Christmas crafting is already in overdrive and it never happens. But this year, M was smart enough to request a new stocking in October and I really can't put it off any longer.
I chose Lion Brand Heartland for the yarn. It is 100% acrylic (horrors!) but really soft and I love the depth of the colors. Acrylic will also last for a billion years and won't stretch out when the stocking gets stuffed. The colors are King's Canyon and Redwood.
To make it fancier I started with a two-color cast on and then a Vikkel braid, all courtesy of Nancy Bush's Folk Knitting in Estonia which is a brilliant book that I have loved for 15 years now. Looks like there are used copies available should you wish to have your very own. The stranded color pattern is also from the book. I plan one more repeat and then another braid and a new pattern for the next panel. I'm going to do an afterthought heel in red - probably a red toe too. I'm going to duplicate stitch her name on the plain green panel with white so it will really pop.
The top edge with the braid REALLY wants to curl - I may knit a little stockinette facing to discourage it.
The only other new thing to show is some yarn I dyed. Can you believe these colors are Kool-Aid?
This will be a the warp for a pooling scarf - there are good explanations and some gorgeous examples in this Ravelry discussion group. I wound the yarn on my warping wheel so I had the full length of the warp and then dyed it in mason jars on the stove like this. If I put it on the loom correctly, the colors will line up and I will have a lovely Ikat effect. I have a whole list of errands to tackle today, but I think a little pre-errand warping may be in order!