It was one of those weeks that leave me feeling like in my next life I deserve to come back as a cat : always have food available and spend the entire day curled up on a blanket, sleeping. Not having anything to worry about, except whether a mouse just ran across the floor, and whether I care.  It was a freezing cold week, too, on top of it all.

Thus it was with absolute thrill on Friday that I came home to a lovely package waiting for me. Inside, wrapped in tissue and yarn, were the most beautiful gifts to brighten my dreary week!

These are both from my friend Katie, who is a master at all things knitting, felting, and yarn-y. Because I can’t knit worth anything, and she is just learning to sew, we had agreed to do a crafty swap: her knitting for my sewing. I had asked for either a cowl or a beret, but little did I know she was going to deliver both to me! Can you see those intricate details on the hat? It’s her own pattern, you know, no big deal. It’s also made from her own handspun and handdyed yarn. Let’s just take a moment to let that sink in. Spinning and dying the wool first, then knitting an amazing hat? Seriously impressive. I feel like I’m wearing a piece of lovingly crafted art. The color is straight from Van Gogh, and is one of my favorite hues.

The cowl is alpaca wool, and is so soft and cozy on my neck that I spent all day Saturday wearing it, since our poor heater couldn’t keep up with the chill. I wore both of these all weekend to combat the chill and damp of Portland in February.

 My part of the swap is going to be a wrap dress for Katie–I am ashamed to say it’s nowhere near being done. Fail. But I’m hoping it will turn out nice, though I’m not sure I can hope for the level of these knits! On the upside, it’s not going to be as winter-appropriate (especially for Chicago, where she lives) as a wool hat, so I’ve got time. Don’t worry, Katie, I’ll finish it up and soon as I can!

If you’re a knitter, check out Katie’s etsy store, kt*did, where she sells more of her handspun, hand-dyed yarn. I’m eyeing the Starfish–if only I could knit…

Thank you thank you–have I mentioned that I love them? Thank you! I’m working hard on my half, I promise.