Posted by: christinelaennec | December 29, 2013

Christmas Knitting

… revealed!  I knitted three Christmas presents this year.  The first was the Basic Entrelac Scarf by Lisa Shroyer, made with Noro Kochoran wool.  I’d never done entrelac before.  I found it fun and, once I got used to it, easy to do.  Working with a colour-changing wool is lots of fun, too.  Needless to say, this particular wool is now discontinued – I bought it on sale (my thrifty Aberdonian side to the fore!).

Entrelac scarf

Basic Entrelac Scarf by Lisa Shroyer, knit from Noro Kochoron

The recipient of the entrelac scarf, a stylish lady of a Certain Age, was very happy with it, so that was great.

The second thing that I made was from the Classic Elite “Shawls, Wraps and Scarves” book that was given to me by the generous Karen of Beatrice Euphemie Vintage Cottage Style.  It’s a treasure trove of patterns that are great for gifts, as most scarves and shawls will fit, and there are a lot of fairly small and thus quick projects.  I thought I’d try this buttoned neck warmer for my friend Tina of The Quiet Home.  I used sock wool by Abstract Cat that I bought at this year’s Glasgow School of Yarn.  The pattern is Buttoned Neck Wrap by Nitza Coto.

Buttoned Neck Wrap

Jewel Tones:  Buttoned Neck Wrap by Nitza Coto, knit from Abstract Cat bluefaced leicester sock yarn.

I was worried it might be a bit too snug around the neck (trust me to pick one of the few patterns where fitting is a consideration!) but Tina says she loves it.  She also likes the colours, which were a pleasure to knit as well.  Goodness knows she will need to stay warm up in the frozen North-East of Scotland!

My last knitted present was a bit of an afterthought.  Made for a fashion-conscious man, I dithered as to whether to make the earflap version or just a plain brim.  Taking advice from Roobeedoo, I opted for a doubled brim to give warmth and to make it more likely to fit.  Funny thing about hats and heads – you really can’t tell how big someone’s head is unless you measure it (which rather gives the game away if you’re hoping to surprise someone).  I spent some time staring at photos trying to judge relative head size compared to Michael – a pointless although rather entertaining exercise!  Here is the result:

Scandinavian patterned hat

Norwegian Star Earflap Hat by Tiennie – without earflaps – knit from Debbie Bliss cashmerino aran and Rowan Creative Focus Worsted.

It’s made of Debbie Bliss cashmerino aran (blue) and Rowan Creative Focus Worsted (grey) – thanks to Karie at John Lewis, Glasgow, for very helpful advice when I had about 10 minutes in which to choose wool!  The pattern is free on Ravelry:  Norwegian Star Earflap Hat by Tiennie.  The hat certainly is very warm, and fit all of our three heads just fine, so fingers crossed the lucky recipient will like and wear it.  I enjoyed making it so much that I’m going to make myself the earflap version!

In writing this post, I was struck by how many friends blogland has provided me with.  Some I have met in person and some live on the other side of the world, but the friendships forged are just as real.

I should add that we have had a most wonderful Christmas.  No power cuts, no floods, plenty of food, mounds of thoughtful and loving presents from our friends and family (including some beautiful knitted mitts and knitting supplies), and visitors!  The Dafter has continued to be able to participate and be out of bed for well over an hour each day, which is fantastic.  I hope you’ve all enjoyed Christmas, so far, and that you’ve had some time to relax and unwind.  I very much hope that none of you has been affected by bad weather.  Not long until the next exciting occasion, a brand new Year!



  1. Everything is beautiful, and I have to say that the neck wrap is even more lovely in real life! 🙂 The buttons are the perfect colour too, you must have been so pleased when you found them! It’s a really lovely addition to my wardrobe, thank you again! xxxxx

  2. Oh my goodness, those are so beautiful! I wish I had the first one…
    We had a good Christmas, too, a day of respite from lots of tensions. Happy New Year to you!

  3. Lovely to see the finished items you have worked so hard upon 🙂
    The entrelac scarf is very “you” looking – maybe you need to make another for yourself?

  4. Wow Christine what a lovely gifts. I love Michael’s hat….Our Christmas was wonderful… New Years resolution…visiting Scotland ..twice.

  5. Three charming garments, and so very special as they were knitted by your own fair hands. I particularly like the hat, and hope we might see your earflap version in due course. Glad to hear you’re having a happy and safe festive season. All is well here too and I’m very grateful for no floods or powercuts.

  6. I am a man, sadly however neither fashion-conscious nor even fashion-aware, but nonetheless I agree 100% with your choice of non-earflap version. I have a similar design (commercially made, of course) that I wear for a large portion of the year even though we have very mild weather where I live. I like my headwear to be confined to the head that is above the ears.

    Funnily enough when I’m running across the Sydney Harbour Bridge in the mornings at about 4 am I often encounter a man walking the opposite direction. We exchange smiles and waves, but we’ve never spoken. In my imagination I have named him Sven, assuming he is perhaps Norwegian or German – because in winter he wears a cap with ear flaps! (In summer our bald heads are both revealed as the reason for our winter time headwear)

  7. I do admire the result of your skilled knitting, Christine! Some friends showed me how to do Continental Style knitting on Friday, and I am hoping that my eyes and fingers can get organized to master it. Mt. Hood has been in hiding for the last two weeks while the weather majors in cold and fog, but inside like you, I have been having warm and happy times with family and friends. I am celebrating with you that Dafter has been able to be up an hour a day! Hooray! xx

  8. Beautiful colours, Christine! A happy New Year to you, Michael and the Dafter. We’re likely to have a rainy new year (it rained on Christmas Eve too), but that’s ok, as we’ve had enough of the heat and we’re looking forward to the rain. 🙂

  9. Happy New Year, dear friend. it’s so nice to be back checking in on blog friends again; life has been crazy busy. love, love, love all your knitting projects. they all look very cosy and I admire your knitting skills. I don’t quite understand how the entrelac scarf works but it looks really great. do you have to knit the little squares individually? so happy to hear the Dafter has been up and about a bit more … here’s to a good new year, full of health and happiness. all the best in your new place and if I manage to get a trip in to Glasgow this coming year, we will have to meet up again. maybe a trip to Kelvingrove and the Glasgow Cathedral?

  10. Your knitwear is very lovely and so intricate in pattern and coloring! I love the woven effect of your first scarf – and the beautiful colors you have chosen for all three. Your recipients are very fortunate to have a treasured piece of your beautiful work. I am very glad you have been able to put the book to good use and thank you for the sweet mention. I do pray that your sweet daughter continues to improve each day and so very glad to hear that you had a lovely Christmas full of kindness and love. I wish you and your family continuing love and kindness and many new blessings for 2014, Christine. xo Karen

  11. Dear everyone,

    Thanks so much for your kind comments and good wishes. We are continuing to have a surprisingly social holiday time, meeting up with friends old and new.

    Tina – I’m so glad you like it, it was my pleasure!

    mandala56 – great to hear that your Christmas has been a bit of a respite. That’s what Christmas should be (but isn’t always).

    Roobeedoo – hmmm, that hadn’t occurred to me!

    Erna – fab news! Do let me know when you will be in or near Glasgow.

    Lorna – I will indeed show you the earflap one, once it is “realised” as they say in French. I’m so glad you haven’t been badly affected by the storms, and I hope that still holds true.

    oldblack – how very nice to get the “not even fashion-aware” male perspective. Funny how we know people in the way you describe. There are several such people I can think of in Aberdeen that I came to know over the years just in passing by. Two are 70-something twins who still dress alike, and there were a few mother-daughter duos that I used to cross paths with at various times. Perhaps you should break the ice with “Sven”?

    Gracie – thank you for rejoicing with us at the Dafter’s improvement. Re. continental knitting, I learned a few years back and for many things I find it SO much easier (particularly on the hands and wrists) than “throwing”. I do use the latter for some projects, though. But I would advise you to persevere with the continental style. It’s an excellent string to a knitter’s bow.

    Timwa – great to hear from you! Greetings to you in Malawi. I wish we could send you some of the rain we have been blessed with over the past month. The ground is absolutely sodden. However, we’re lucky not to have any serious problems here.

    J2Scotland – thank you! The entrelac doesn’t involve any seams. You pick up stitches along edges as you go (bit more complicated than that – but logical). It would be wonderful to meet up again, just let me know your dates!

    Karen – thank you so much for your kind words and good wishes. Xox

  12. So fun to see your secret knitting!!! Also so glad to hear that you are having a happy holiday season and seeing many friends. That is a special blessing after your move. I hosted a bridal shower yesterday and now have my commitments behind me for 2013. 🙂 Must get on to my to-do list and get ready for starting school again next week. But, I am taking some time to focus on rest and my sister gave me the best present ever — a magic cake shawl (I’ll explain more on my blog sometime soon) and it is very relaxing to just sit and knit. Happy Hogmanay to you all!!!! (Wish I was going to have a clean house by tonight to welcome the new year!)

  13. They’re all so beautiful, Christine – but my personal favorite is the entrelac scarf. I think my resolution should be to knit more this year! ❤

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