Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Republican coin, c.225-212; (Kunsthistorisches Museum, Wien)

The ancient Roman god Janus is closely associated with doorways, beginnings, and transitions. His two faces--one looking back to the past, one toward the future--are also a potent symbol for archives and archivists, who collect and care for the records of the past to serve as a continuing resource for the future. For a knitter, the sense of Janus could be embodied in a cake of yarn, with its two ends, or even a single stitch, which is at once both knit and purl, its two faces opposed and integrated. Of course, the month of January is named for Janus: the old year closes here just as the new year opens.

Looking back on 2010, I see some things that definitely color my view forward into 2011--in generally positive ways. For one thing, there's my FO tally (with links to Rav project or pattern pages, where applicable):

2 Dewey baby pullovers
1 Elsie baby cardigan with beaded yoke (which one of the cats threw up on...sigh)
1 Beverly cardigan for Abbe
3 Larkin baby blankets
1 Otto bear (for little Henry Marcel)
1 Chiana sweater
2 Constance cardigans (adult sizes...one of which I haven't even taken pictures of)
1 Constance baby cardigan
2 tall Billington bags
3 small Billington bags
1 Herringbone vest for Steven (which I started in 2009 and set aside until finishign it in March, 2010, so I'm counting it as a 2010 FO, dang it!)
1 Althea cardigan
1 Althea skirt (which I just realized is not listed in my Ravelry store...fixing that now!)
2 Hill Country dresses
3 Cecily camisoles
1 Cecily jacket

...And I think that's about it. It's interesting to see how many false starts I had among my new projects for 2010: Dewey, Elsie, Chiana, Constance, and the men's vest pattern are all lingering in the prototype phases, really, and not truly finished designs yet. They all still need a certain something. But Billington, Larkin, Hill Country, and the Cecily camisole are all things I'm quite proud of.

The pledge I made to contribute $1 from the sale of each Billington bag pattern to the Center for Home Movies yielded great results--over $300!--and is a big step toward the goal for the CHM year-end fundraiser. (We can always use a little bit more, though--even $5 or $10 makes a big difference to a small organization like this one, so feel free to click that link and pitch in to CHM or another charity of your choice through the Network for Good!) I'm already thinking about what my next pledge project might be--I found this experience really gratifying, and think many of the people who purchased the pattern liked that they got to help a good cause at the same time.

The Cecily jacket will probably be the next pattern release I do, and the first pattern I release in 2011. I'm very pleased with that one, and just need to write up and size the pattern. (Um, and get it test-knitted, tech-edited, photographed, laid out, and...whew. I'm tired already.) The lightweight camisole-and-jacket twinset will make for nice springtime knitting and wearing. And of course I have new projects cooking all the time, especially when life is going well and I have time to sort of soften my focus and let the new ideas drift in...

Last but definitely not least, I want to announce the winner of my very first blog giveaway! It's CelticCastOn, who shared a great story about the dollhouse her dad made, which kinda sorta ruined the Santa myth for her but is now a treasured heirloom toy to be passed on to her little daughter. Kelly's a great knitter and will no doubt make something amazing with whatever she gets from HCW with that gift certificate. (Be sure to post a link to that here when it's done, Kelly!) Everyone's comments on that post were terrific; I can't tell you how much I enjoyed reading about the smells, recipes, handmade and homemade treasures all of you remember from years past. (Also? The cat getting stuck in the Christmas tree and the mom who set her hair on fire with sparklers. Love it!!) Thanks to all of you for making my first blog giveaway so much fun for ME--I've never gotten so many comments on a post and love how connected it made me feel to those who are reading. Expect the giveaways to continue in 2011!