This morning I finished a sock.
It’s a pattern I’ve tweaked rather extensively. It started as an Elizabeth Zimmermann and Meg Swansen pattern. I’ve made them before, but really didn’t care for the toe or the heel. The original pattern called for a flat toe, with the ends woven with the Kitchener stitch. And the heel is a saddle heel.
In looking for a toe that might be more comfortable, I came across a pattern in a needlework book from the 1940s. It suggests a rounded toe can be made like a mitten.
And you know what?
I like it better!
As I was casting on this morning for the second sock, inspiration for this post struck…
This is a provisional cast on. And when I cast on double pointed or circular needles, I like to cast on a straight needle. The stitches for the cast on row stay better formed, and I don’t have to mess with twisting the stitches. After knitting one row, they tend to lie flatter when putting them on the double pointed needles.
I do however find that point protectors can also keep the stitches from sliding off the needle until they are knit onto the 3 or 4 needles.
Well, the point protectors would make a gift for a knitter. They could be tucked into a stocking.
What are some other budget-friendly last minute Christmas gifts for knitters?
- Stitch Markers. You can get real fancy if you like. My personal preference are the plastic cabone rings. They are the rings that are used for making curtains and drapes. Lightweight and smooth, they are easy to use and move without catching most yarns.
- Locking Stitch Markers. Locking stitch markers are handy for complicated patterns, when you need to keep track of where to start the next group of stitches. They’re especially helpful for cables and lace knitting. You can mark the stitches a row or two below your working row, and move them as needed. Often they don’t need moved every row, unlike stitch markers like cabone rings. Those are placed on the working row, and moved each row so you don’t knit the ring into the knitted fabric!
- Embroidery Scissors With Scissors Point Protector. Embroidery scissors? Yes, they are handy to cut yarn especially fine yarn. And their point can come in handy for snipping one stitch at a time as in making steeks.
- Knitting Accessories Kit: You can often find a knitting accessories kit that includes several of the items above. And more! Some include handy carrying cases or other tools a knitter can find useful.
- Knitting Downloads. Kindle has knitting books and even knitting patterns. Maybe the ultimate last-minute gift for a knitter because there’s no waiting for delivery!
One of the hottest books this year is “55 Christmas Balls To Knit” by Arne and Carlos. Unfortunately for last minute shoppers, there is no 55 Christmas Balls To Knit pdf. Sadly because downloads are an almost instant gift for Christmas and other occasions.
For knitters, my “Snowflake Christmas Balls” knit up quickly with small amounts of yarn. The pattern makes a last minute gift, as can the snowflake Christmas balls! Click here now for more information.
To your healthy knitting and caregiving,
Ina Gilmore, M.D. (Retired)
“The Knitting Dr.”
Founder, www.CaregivingWithPurpose.com and www.TheKnittingYarn.com