Brrr...the Irish Hiking Scarf braves the cold weather
Several months ago, my sister asked me if I would make a scarf for her boyfriend, Andy. This request reminded me of the time when, in law school, I had asked one of my classmates, who had come into the lecture hall wearing a beautifully textured scarf made with thick wool and wispy mohair in saffrons and deep pinks, where she had purchased her scarf. It turned out that her mom was an expert knitter and had knit it for her. Naïvely, I asked her if her mom would be interested in making me one as well, of course I'd cover the cost of any materials. I say naïvely because at the time I was not yet a knitter and could not yet appreciate all of the time and energy and thought that is required for making something.
This memory along with my sister's request led me to think about why I knit -- I certainly enjoy the process of knitting, from the pattern selection/physical design stage (some take more pleasure in this than others) to selecting colors and textures, and of course the soothing rhythmic element of knitting and purling stitch after stitch. But in the end, I really relish the finished product-- the "I made that myself" satisfaction of a completed project and perhaps most importantly, imparting my enthusiasm to the final recipient. I take great pleasure in seeing someone wearing one of my creations, so much in fact, that the last three projects I have finished have been for other people in my life. It seems around blog land that there are people who enjoy both equally, as attested by the number of those who knit special gifts for the holidays. Which type are you -- process or end result or perhaps both?
In any case, there were a great many e-mails exchanged on the subject before settling on the Irish Hiking Scarf and the particular yarn, rowanspun aran. In the end, Andy chose simplicity over complication (and my other projects thank him for that) selecting the Irish Hiking Scarf over the Here and There Cables and Forbes Forest from Scarf Style. From there I proposed several different yarns - Cascade 220 or Cashmerino Aran but he finally settled on the heathered, slightly rough Rowanspun.
My sister and Andy live in a very cold part of the United States where snow is packed on the streets until March, so I think it will come in handy this winter.
Project: Irish Hiking Scarf from Helloyarn.com
Yarn: Rowanspun Aran in Caviar
Amount Used: 1 1/2 skeins (approximately 350 yards)
Needles: 4.5mm (US 8) straights
Comments: Metro knitting of choice for several weeks, this pattern was easy to memorize, simple to knit and produced a handsome result. I may have blocked this too vigorously as the cables seem a bit flat but I think it should spring back to life after one days' wear in the snow. More details here.