It happened last winter. A dear friend looked at me getting ready to leave an evening meeting. I had pulled on my neckwarmer, hat and coat -- which wasn't yet fastened. She turned around from someone else she had been speaking with, looked at me and said, in her forthright way, "You look like you got dressed in the dark." And then I looked down at myself. Blue jeans, a gold coloured top, scarlet sweater, slate grey coat with orchid purple lining, pink neckwarmer. "Not too awful," I thought to myself. And then I remembered my pistachio green hat and dove grey mittens. I took a quick look in a convenient mirror. Oh dear. I did look like I might have gotten dressed at dark o'clock in the morning. During a blackout.
Well. That started something turning over in my mind. How did this happen? I pick colours that I love, for everything I knit. And I do love colours. Most of the time, they play together quite happily. What had gone so horribly wrong this time? And why was it such a problem?
The answer, I decided, must be that I had created those items -- hat, mittens, neckwarmer -- as individual projects, with no thought to what they would be worn with, just an immediate fondness for the colour and the yarn in my hands at the time. And, oh! The yarns. The dove grey mittens were knitted from my favourite go-to Cascade 220. Squishy, warm and windproof. The neckwarmer was a destashing project involving a partial ball of custom dyed merino sock yarn in pink, lavender and gold, and a partial ball of DROPS Alpaca in a pink that's a perfect match for the sock yarn. Merino and alpaca. Need I say more? The hat was a classic touque, created from two precious balls of pistachio coloured Mission Falls 1824. So squishy and remarkably wind resistant. And also sadly unavailable ever hereafter.
After a long and arduous search, I think I have found my new winter set. Allow me to introduce the 2014 winter lineup of accessories-that-will-not-land-Gwen-on-an-episode-of-"What-Not-to-Wear"!
First up, the neckline. The Amiga was great because it tucked inside, and while I could have made it again in coat-friendlier colours, I had created it once and once is enough. Here's its replacement:
This lovely thing is Pop Blossoms -- with modifications, of course, because, well. Who follows patterns exactly?
For keeping my head warm, I chose something with an auspicious name:
Odessa! More of that lovely slate grey Cascade 220. If the wind blows through a bit, I might line it. I haven't decided yet.
And last, but not least mittens will be arriving soon:
These are going to be Birdcage Mittens. They're progressing nicely, and I should have a wonderful, co-ordinating coat and accessories in plenty of time for the cold and snow.
Hey, I just realized something.
Now I can get dressed in the dark!