First, a question: what's your favorite pattern for a dressy men's scarf? I have worsted weight yarn in one color, and am thinking about working a herringbone look in a knit/purl combo, but I'm open to ideas...
This past weekend I was delighted to be able to attend two classes taught by Franklin Habit at Loop in Philadelphia. I was his favorite guy in the classes. Well, okay, I was the only guy in the classes besides him. What better way to study lace than under the tutelage of a man? If my memory serves me correctly, we were introduced to the Orenberg, Estonian, and Shetland schools of knitting lace. In the lace edgings class we knit the smallest possible model of an Orenberg shawl's construction, which ended up looking like a "Stupid Little Snowflake." I also got Franklin to try to work some voodoo magic on a pair of misbehaving socks I had started in the Franklin's Panopticon colorway. Now, hopefully they will knit up into socks that fit me. Some people climb the stairs of a cathedral on their knees; I bring partially knit socks. I can say with confidence that Franklin is a good sport for strange requests.
Among the stuff I've been knitting, I whipped up a hat for a friend, which I found myself wearing so much that I knew I'd better make one for myself. I made my version to match a pair of mitts I finally got around to knitting in Shepherd's Worsted. The Mitts are Stephen West's Diamondback Mitts, while the hat is Ysolda Teague's Cairn. Both use slipped stitches to work their magic. I love the way the Cairn hat knits up; it's one of those knits that moves along quickly and interestingly, and is pretty easy to follow where you are. The crown decreases are a pip, and the hat feels great when worn. Best of all, it looks trickier than it is. So there's my Christmas hat recommendation for y'all.
I was glad to make it to the revival of the men's knitting circle in center city Philadelphia last month. If any of you guys are in the area on the last Tuesday of the month, come on out! It's a haul for me to get there, but it's nice to knit with guys once in a while, so I do it whenever I can.