a successful gifting season

It’s hard to believe that just two weeks ago I was stressing over some late birthday/Christmas present/test knitting projects.  I actually knit double the amount of presents I was planning — I believe this is the first year ever that I finished my Christmas presents on time!

* * The only downside to knitting presents is that once I give them, I can’t get them back for a good photo!  Plus, it’s been around zero degrees Fahrenheit lately — my “photographer” has not been willing to go outside.  You’ll just have to deal with (mostly) phone pics in this post. 😉 * * 

I was planning on knitting one hat for my significant other and a cowl for my mom.  However, I couldn’t stop at presents just for them.  It was going to be all or nothing!  I had enough yarn for a second hat for my dad, and after digging through my stash, I found the perfect yarn for a third hat for my brother-in-law.

Three Man Hats | Free pattern here | Black: Knit Picks Brava Bulky | Grey: Malabrigo Chunky in Pearl Ten | Brown: Malabrigo Chunky in Marron Oscuro | Under 1 skein for each hat and 2 days!

All three guys loved their hats, and I loved making them, as the pattern is super easy.  All three only took one long weekend.

Check out my project page here on Ravelry for a few tiny modifications I made.

The cowl for my mom was my second Milanese Loop (click for the free pattern!).  After she saw my first that I made back in October, she hinted that she might be stealing mine now and then.  Well, I couldn’t have that happen!

I modified the pattern to only 98 stitches on US 6 needles, plus a neater cast on. Check out my Ravelry project page here.

I used Malabrigo Rios as I did in my first Mal Loop, but this time I tried out the color Cumparsita and added a few more repeats of the lace pattern.  I am continuously amazed at Malabrigo’s colors!

Here’s my first Mal Loop to show the size, because it’s too cold outside for a modeled photo of the new Mal Loop. 😉

Since I just finished a sweater for my sister’s birthday (my second Shalom Cardigan), I wasn’t going to knit her a Christmas present.  But, I just couldn’t leave her out.  So I cheated — she still got a present, but I had made it about a year earlier!

I used less than one skein (42g total) of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Tweed in Lost Lake Heather. 

Before I self-published my patterns on Ravelry, I tried selling them as finished hand knit goods through Etsy.  It was a tough market, and I realized writing up my patterns would be more fun.  These fingerless gloves were a product of the first venture of selling knit items.  You can find the pattern on Ravelry or on my blog under my Knitting Patterns.

The last person in my immediate family that still didn’t have a present was my nephew.  I chose not to knit anything extra for him since I had finished a sweater I test knit in October for him — and I had really splurged on store-bought presents for him this year, so I knew he would not be lacking in gifts. 😉

O Christmas Tree by Julia B. | Sized for infant through child

This test knit wasn’t actually planned for him at first — but the pattern came out a little larger than I had thought, and it ended up fitting him perfectly!  However, it took a bit of coaxing to get him to actually wear it for photo back in October….and of course I could not talk him in to wearing it on Christmas.  Boys! 🙄

Check out my Ravelry project page here for more photos and notes about this cute tree sweater that I test knit.

A perfect fit! (And a still photo!)

So that concludes my handmade holiday.  I am still impressed by my quick fingers, although I feel like the bar has been raised.  What will I do after this year?  Everyone is going to expect finished presents now!  I’d love to hear about what patterns you have used to make presents.

…And in case you are wondering: I am still working on my test knit cable sweater!  I hope to have it done next week — check back to see how it turns out, or check out Facebook or Instagram for updated photos.

As always, thanks for reading — AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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