The HGP is now having us work on Christmas gifts for an hour a day, but that may not be enough. Above you can see the fruits of two days’ worth of work at this pace. Of course, the first night was swatching. The pattern calls for a gauge of 7 to the inch and the yarn in the kit is worsted weight. I am therefore knitting up this lovely worsted on needles suited for lace, or at least for socks.

That means that an hour of knitting last night yielded just this tiny frill of ribbing.

Working on tinier and ever tinier needles in an attempt to get gauge made me think of Amy Herzog, who said to give up on the idea of getting gauge. She said to audition yarn for the part, making large swatches and washing them and blocking them and carrying them around with you to make sure you love the fabric. This particular gift, requested by a daughter, is only slightly larger finished than Herzog’s idea of a proper swatch.

But I am not that good a swatcher. I swatch, sure, but only in the sense that I try out as many needle and yarn combinations as it takes to get gauge. Then I frog the swatch completely and use that yarn. I’m going to go ahead and knit this, even with some misgivings. Then I may make the same pattern up again in DK, because I see at Ravelry that a lot of knitters have done just that with this pattern.

As I have three daughters when I count my daughter in law, I may want to make three of these anyway. And with gift knitting, there is sometimes a little more flexibility, because it’s going to fit somebody, right?

However, I have made and given knitted sweaters that turned out not to fit, and which I then had to re-knit. So I hope to do a little better with the whole swatch and fit process this year.

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