Saturday, June 7, 2008

Ulterior (Sock) Motives

I have a confession to make: I have only soldiered on in my sock attempts to prepare myself for some Opal yarn in the Harry Potter colorways. They come out in the fall, sometime before the movie. Since I've decided that I must possess them all, I feel a little obligated to actually make them into something. Though the prospect of just keeping the lovely skeins around (or having them framed) is quite appealing to me :-)

This got me thinking about the role the HP series has played in my knitting. After reading the books and having myself sorted (via or something like that) into Slytherin I decided that I must have a scarf. [Side Note: Again, I'm not a bad person; though I suspect that my ambition can sometimes set my moral compass spinning, it does find itself again eventually.] I put aside the fact that I seldom visit latitudes North of, oh, Southern California or so, and sought out a Slytherin scarf for myself.

When I finally found a store selling them I couldn't bring myself to pay some $27 dollars for it. The USC bookstore sold a lovely Gryffindor 'SC scarf that fall for the bargain price of $10 and I caved, but it still wasn't the same. I felt like I was misrepresenting myself by wearing it to the movie premier. Weird huh? I found plenty of other things in WhimsicAlley to amuse me for hours on end (including a quill pen and ink, and a Dark Mark temporary tattoo), but the crafty part of my brain was whirring along at full tilt. "How are scarves made? They look woven together, not sewn up patches of color. Gee, I wonder how they do that. OH, knitting would do that ... right?" is how my internal monologue went. TO THE INTERNET!

After some brief googling I discovered that people can, in fact, knit these things themselves! I dashed out to Michaels, bought a skein of green and one of grey and a pair of needles. I had no regard for the type of yarn, it's gauge, or even the size of the needles really, so you probably know how this turned out. I worked diligently on my very first project and once I had mastered the Knit and Purl stitches (and realized that Knitting on BOTH sides means you end up with garter stitch) the scarf seemed to fly off the needles. Of course I was using US 10s (because 10 sounded like a nice round number at the time). I was very proud of my efforts, but not so much of the scarf. I had picked up reading a few knitting related sites and had learned so much that, despite the lacklustre scarf, I was hooked (or knitted, rather, as this isn't crochet afterall).

The scarf eventually ended up being ripped out and used to make Salazar the Bear. And I've never gotten around to making myself a proper Slytherin scarf either, but this doesn't trouble me much anymore because of a) the climate I live in and b) the fact that my halloween costume robe is Gryffindor too. [Side Note: this is because I could not find a suitable green lining fabric last year to save my life, but red was everywhere and on sale!]

Speaking of Sal though, I've found that his neck is a bit floppy which makes him look as if he's puzzled by something. Rather than busy myself with reinforcing his neck I decided to take a page out of Nearly Headless Nick's book and make him a scarf to hold his head up instead, haha! I took the book scarf pattern as it was originally posted and just kept knitting it until it was long enough for Sal. I'll have him try it on when I get home. [Imagine him with his head cocked to the side as if to say "For me?"]

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