Here's a sweet little TV project you can work on for the tree (or fireplace, or staircase, or wherever) and add to as you go. This chain link garland is made of little loops of knitting -- about 2 inches around and 10 inches long, but you can make them whatever size you like -- and it's completely a stash busting project.
I literally went around my office, picking up part balls of yarn and knitting a loop here and there for a couple of weeks until I had enough to hang. It could of course be a lot longer and I could keep building on it through the season, over the course of a couple of years, even.
I love the idea of finishing up each project by knitting the leftover yarn into a strip that gets added to the chain. It's almost like a knit scrapbook you can use to decorate your house!
I thought that I had knit an ornament-sized sweater before at some point, but I guess I hadn't (or if I did I never wrote about it). So I decided to make one this year.
This is a super simple project you can make in an afternoon, and it's actually pretty good sized for something billed as mini. In the off season it will make a great little slouchy sweater for a fashion doll or another small doll, or you can slip it over a glass bottle for a cute little cozy.
Check out the project on Ravelry, and let me know if you have any tiny knits on your tree!
I love a Christmas ornament knitting pattern that builds on something else, whether that means literally using a material for structure (as in my Christmas wreath ornament) or just as inspiration.
Through the years I've used the Christmas ball as a literal frame for ornament patterns and as a shape to work with without a real ball underneath.
On the other hand my Christmas Ball ornament takes that simple shape and knits it in stripes to form a ball that's stuffed and then hung from the tree. That one may actually be my favorite, but they all go to prove that it's easy to add a bit of knitting to your tree!
Knitting gifts given when it's cold outside usually need to be adept at keeping the recipient warm. It's a bonus for procrastinating stitchers everywhere that projects worked in bulky yarns are both really warm and really quick to knit.
Tanis Gray has collected 50 such options that are great gift ideas for the women (and babies) on your list in her book Cozy Knits. A couple of these projects I'd really like to cast on for myself right about now (in the middle of day four of being snowed in as I write this).
A lot of the projects in this book are accessories, which are of course a great choice for gift giving because the size doesn't have to be that exact (I made fingerless gloves for a bunch of people last year, but I think I'm taking this year off from gift knitting). If you're looking for more fun options for knit accessories, check out Cathy Carron's awesome book Hattitude, Nicky Epstein's Signature Scarves for some really fun embellished projects (naturally) or Judith Durant's One-Skein Wonders.
I'll have plenty of quick knitting options throughout the month, but some of my favorites include the bulky fingerless gloves you can knit in an afternoon; the super simple Roll Brim Hat for women; and the fun stash-busting Horizontal Scarf. Still kind of regret gifting that one.
Have a favorite go-to pattern for gift giving? I'd love to hear about it.
It doesn't take much to make knits and purls look a little different. I love stitch patterns that throw in just a little bit of texture or a slightly different way of doing things that makes a big difference in how a project looks.
One example of that is Horizontal Dash Stitch, which is mostly Stockinette but has little sections of purl bumps on the right side at regular intervals. This breaks up the smoothness of the fabric just enough to make it more interesting without adding too much difficulty for the knitter.
I used this pattern in a preemie-sized baby blanket, which is a great charity project for the holidays or any other time. I used a multicolored yarn for that project, and those purl bumps break up the colors a bit in a way I really like.
Do you like simple texture patterns like this or would you rather stick to Stockinette? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
I have a lot of gift ideas here on the site of course, but there are lots of great books on the topic of gift knitting as well that you ought to check out if you're looking for some new ideas.
While not strictly about gift knitting, the new 60 Quick Knits from America's Yarn Shops is a good choice if you're looking to knit something quick for a loved one. These projects all use Cascade 220 or 220 Superwash, and they're mostly pretty small so they won't cost you a lot in money or time.
Last-Minute Knitted Gifts and its companion, More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts, are both a lot of fun because the patterns are arranged by how long they take to knit. If you have just a couple of hours you'll find things you still have time to make, but there are also projects for when you have a little more time to commit.
Combine quick knitting with the frugality of using a skein of yarn out of your stash with the ideas in One Ball Knits Gifts. Or check out the lovely patterns and spirit of Gifted by Mags Kandis. Knitted Gifts by Ann Budd and Knits to Give by Debbie Bliss also have some great ideas. Now you have no excuse not to get knitting!
My daughter loves dress up, and I think it would be a great idea to make her some dress up clothes and accessories for Christmas. She'll get plenty of use out of them over the holiday break from school, and it's just nice to make thing that kids will actually use, right?
I'm definitely planning to sew up some aprons for her, and I have a thrifted gown that needs to be altered, but knitting some fun dress up things would be great, too.
This baby cape is still in her collection as well and it works pretty nicely as a bit of fluff around the neck, too.
If you're looking for more ideas, check out Vickie Howell's fun book New Knits on the Block. It has lots of fun ideas for dress up, play time and more. So much fun!
Have you ever made (knit or otherwise) dress up stuff for kids? I'd love to hear about it and steal your ideas!
I always seem to wait to the last minute to even decide if I'm going to knit for other people for Christmas, let alone what I might knit for them. If you're like that, too, this week I'm going to offer a bunch of options you still have time to knit.
Today I'd like to suggest cowls. These loops of knitting can be complex, but there are a lot of patterns out there that are pretty quick and easy to knit, and they look pretty impressive. They're also useful, because most everyone can use a little warmth around the neck from time to time.
I recently finished the Ridged Eyelet Cowl, which was supposed to be for my daughter. She says I knit it too long even though she was consulted every stitch of the way. The good news is it fits a kid or an adult, and it's really warm and cozy no matter who you give it to.
Some more of my favorites include:
- The Candle Flame Cowl, which is dramatic, warm and a fun way to do lace
- The Garter Stitch Cowl and Garter Stitch Striped Cowl, both great for beginners
- And the Faux Mobius/Infinity Scarf, which is worked in the round with an intentional twist
Do you like to knit cowls? I'd love to hear about your favorite patterns.
We've been lucky enough to have a couple of Christmas stocking patterns designed by Vickie Howell hosted here over the years, so I thought while we were on the subject of stockings I would share those with you, too.
The Zig-zag Christmas stocking features the still-popular chevron stripe motif and is worked in two bright colors of her Sheep(ish) yarn.
And her Fair Isle Stocking is nice if you're new to stranded knitting, because there's not a lot about this pattern that's complex, and most of it is still one color at a time.
These are great projects if you want a show-stopping stocking that's as interesting as the goodies inside!
If you're knitting stockings for the whole family I hope for your sake you've started already, but if you just want to knit one stocking for someone special or a new addition to the family you still have plenty of time (and actually, you could knit a few of some of these easy ones).
I like a stocking that gives you a canvas for adding your own embellishments, like my simple two-color Stockinette Stocking. You can easily stitch in a monogram or another simple design of your choice.
If stripes are more your thing, my Striped Stocking is also a quick and easy choice in bulky yarn. I love it in classic red and white stripes, but choose whatever colors you like in your holiday decor.
Combine stripes and personalization in Eileen Casey's Personalized Christmas Stocking, which is a large project but a lot of fun to work and an instant heirloom.
Do you have knit stockings? I'd love to hear about them!