Friday, January 8, 2010

A Knot, a Ball of Yarn, and a Scarf.

Dear Avid Readers,

Remember in my last post how I mentioned that I "worked on a Christmas present"? I am sure you all remember it really well and the anticipation must be killing you. I am not only going to show you - I am totally going to teach you how to make your very own.

Step one: Go to Budapest Christmas... Let me know when you will be there I will totally come along for moral support (they don't speak english at this booth). Enjoy a mug of hot wine then purchase the most beautiful handmade wool full of burs and straw and stuff.

-How lovely is that?

Step Two: Unravel the wool - this takes as long to do as it does to actually knit the scarf. It is best not to start this step at 11pm.

-Action Shot!

-Realizing someone might yell at me for not putting my clothes away and just hanging them on my chair I moved them out of the shot.

Step Four: Pout because of the large knot and late hour.

-This is ridiculous!

Step Five - Come to terms with the fact that there is no way to make these balls smaller and that I am just going to have be more creative at getting this knot out.
*Editor's Note: One way to make the balls smaller would have been to untie the knots that made the yarn so long in the first place. Realizing this weeks after the fact makes the author of the blog feel like a complete dumb-ass. (cough I mean not a swear word - Hi family!).

-Come on Piebiak - You are a strong, capable, educated, woman. YOU CAN DO THIS.

Step Six: Repeat steps 4 and 5 until it 1 am then take one last picture and go to bed. You are on vacation and vacation is supposed to be relaxing. THIS HOWEVER IS NOT RELAXING.


Step Seven: Go to Vienna and be lazy for the holidays and find a pattern that suits you. Realize after 8 rows that the pattern is too skinny double the width. Start again. Decide that doubling the pattern that it is now to wide. Pout. Motivate ones self to do some math. It was your highest mark in high-school you can use these skills to make you OWN pattern. YOU ARE A STRONG, CAPABLE, EDUCATED WOMAN or man... Motivating yourself is the only way you will get through this.

-Does this scarf make my thighs look fat?

Step Eight: Continue knitting while watching movies, riding the train, watching the entire BBC mini series Pride and Prejudice, take the scarf to a coffee shop and knit it there, on the bus where ever... Curse at it... etc.

-Even up close it looks good.

Step Nine: Repeat step eight. Really there shouldn't be a step nine but it makes the blog formatting look better.

-Half way there....

Step Ten.A: Wash the scarf in coldish water all while panicking about how it might lose all its colour because it didn't come with washing instructions. Also, during this step you may also want to worry about it shrinking.

Step Ten.B: Block scarf. This means stretch it to be the shape you want it to be and pin it down and let it dry... I don't know if I did it right but it totally worked.

Step Ten.C: Sew in the loose ends. This is the most boring/annoying step.


Step Eleven: Take one last picture and give it to your friend for Christmas. Be really happy when she wears it every day to work that week and says things like "I love real wool", "I love this scarf", "This scarf is so warm and perfect", "This scarf makes me look so cool", "I would look so cool in the UK wearing this scarf, even cooler than here", "This scarf makes me want to give you a raise - you can take Friday off".

-That is one beautiful creation... Such pretty wool...

Want to know my top secret pattern?
I started with this pattern.
Then turned it into this with my mean math skillz:

CO 25 st

Knit 4 rows garter stitch

Row 1: K2, (K2tog, yo) 3 times, K1, (K2tog, yo) 3 times, K1, (K2tog, yo) 3 times, K3

Row 2: K2, P to last two st, K2

Row 3: K3, (k2tog, yo) 2 times, K3, (K2tog, yo) 2 times, K3, (k2tog, yo) 2 times, K4

Row 4: K2, P to last two st, K2

REPEAT REPEAT REPEAT until it is as long as you are tall, or as long as your wingspan (SAME THING!!!), or until it is as long as you want it to be, or until you are just about out of yarn.

Knit 4 rows garter stitch


  1. 1. That scarf is gorgeous. Nice work!

    2. I made the exact same unravelling mistake when I bought yarn in India. It took me days to get it unravelled, and some men on a bus I was taking even helped me. Skeins confuse me.

    3. I want to try your pattern. Would you say that the yarn you used was bulky weight?

    4. I miss you!

  2. I don't know a lot about yarn weights... I used size seven needles because those are the only ones I have here. I would say it was either worsted or bulky - it is hard to say. Ok I have compared it to a medium #4 yarn I have here and it is definitely thicker than that so I would say bulky.

    I miss you too! I could really be into a knitting for goofs/watching the office evening.

  3. You know, having read this I love the scarf even more. You are absolutely right, you are so strong and wise and brave woman and you even went to the cold water! P.S. I love that scarf! P.P.S. It makes me look so cool did you notice? P.P.P.S. I'm going to wear it in June and July, too. On Fridays.

  4. Exxxxxxxcellent work, Jill. Since I am NOT skilled in any crafts, just reading your blog gave me battle fatigue. That's why I have purchased every scarf I have ever owned or have given away as gifts. Yet, you were able to create a work of art...I'm duly impressed.
    love, auntie chris