One of the things I have been doing while not updating my blog is participating in the Ravellenic Games over on Ravelry. The idea behind this event is to challenge yourself in your chosen craft while the olympians challenge themselves in sport. Generally, any project must be started after the opening ceremonies begin and finished before the end of the closing ceremonies. Some people are ambitious enough to knit an entire sweater or blanket during the two short weeks. Others try complicated techniques that have intimidated them in the past. I have generally tried to knit about as much as I knit in a month, with only half the time. Some people challenge themselves to finish projects or use materials that have been languishing for years. There is no competition between crafters, just the spirit of pushing yourself to do your best.
For my personal challenge, I decided to use the luscious Jade Sapphire Mongolian Cashmere in Caribbean Mist that my friends Duien and DJspinmonkey gave me for my birthday a couple of years ago. I started the Games a little behind, because I had neither decided what to knit nor wound my yarn from a hank into a ball to knit from. I knew I wanted to knit something that would be close to my face so that I could take full advantage of the soft cashmere, but I was a bit unsure of how to use the yardage. I decided to knit a hat and cowl set, selecting two patterns that are written by different designers, but share similar motifs. By the end of the opening ceremonies, I had knitted about two rows.
Yesterday, with the addition of a ribbon as the final touch, I completed my first project of the set, a cloche hat using the Chapeau Marnier pattern by Marnie MacLean. Marnie has emerged as one of my favorite designers after I discovered her on Twist Collective and used her pattern, Lily, for the first sweater I ever knitted.
This hat was surprisingly fast to knit, and though I was afraid as I finished it up that it wouldn't fit properly, or that the scalloped edges would flare strangely, once I washed and blocked the completed knitting, it turned out beautifully. Off I go to collect my medals.