I’ve been carrying around my busted MDK March Mayhem bracket since March 21, when it was a lot less busted than it is now. I think of it as my shopping list. It has 64 patterns that I’m planning to make. I haven’t exactly calculated how long that’s going to take me, but I am proud to announce that I’m on my way.
One down, 63 to go:
I’ll admit, I’m a little behind on my plan to knit all of the MDK March Mayhem patterns from last year—in that photo you can see one of the three projects from Mayhem 2018 that I finished: Melanie Berg’s True Colors Wrap, knitted in our Canon Hand Dyes Mini Skein Sets.
(You can also see my fresh-baked Norah Gaughan pullover. This photo makes me realize that wearing three handknits at the same time communicates something along the lines of GURL YOU KNIT EVRY DAY.) (I DON’T SEE THE PROBLEM HERE.)
Headgear as Statement
A few thoughts on that Magnolia Hat.
Getting ready for Edinburgh, I packed the Magnolia Hat pattern along with my leftover yoke yarn from my Petula Pullover, the Isabell Kraemer sweater from MDK Field Guide No. 10: Downtown. My fondness for the icy shade of Mohonk called Bering cannot be overstated. It is magnificent. It is greeny blue or bluegreen depending on the light.
I cast on during a lull at the yarn festival, when I was seated next to these women during a rare moment of al fresco knitting in a city that loves a cloud:
Agneta Byers and Kicki Strandqvist, the Swedish proprietors of Z Garn. (That’s “Zed Garn” to you philistines who see “Zee Garn.” Z Garn is spun with a Z twist, not the more familiar S twist. This gives fabric a fluffiness that is different from what you get with S-twist yarns. I was trying really hard to keep up with this without saying anything about the KNITTED CHICKENS STREWN AMONGST THE BLEACHERS.)
(Get the chicken pattern here. Where you can also see the video of a chicken rap. Don’t worry; it’s in the universal language of Chicken.)
With the Wrong Tools, You Can’t Do Anything
ANYway. My point here, and I may have one, is that I began this top-down hat using the Magic Loop technique, with a long circular needle. Agneta and Kicki could testify to my lack of success with this.
To be clear: you cast on 8 stitches and end up with a hat. I couldn’t get past Stitch 16 without gumming up the magic loop or otherwise pfaffing it.
Soon after asking Agneta and Kicki for the Swedish word for crap, I realized, ten yards away, there was a magical marketplace filled with yarn, knitters, and knitting notions out the wazoo.
I rallied, wedged my way into the madness, and emerged with a set of double-pointed needles that broke new ground for me.
With the Right Tool, You Can Do Anything
They were 8 inches long.
An inch longer or more than the DPNs I typically use.
This was a game changer. That extra inch gave me a good handle on the DPNs as I worked those early increases. It all instantly felt easier. It was counterintuitive to use a longer DPN while working the tiniest number of stitches, but there you go.
I now have a matchy beautiful hat to go with my Petula Pullover from MDK Field Guide No. 10: Downtown. Here you can see it alongside the Isabell Kraemer design that was the champion of MDK Mayhem 2018: the Humulus Sweater.
I’m about to cast on Project No. 2 from the bracket. What are you planning to knit from the bracket? All 64?