Finish 2 of 2020: the Woolly Thing

I love those occasional lightbulb moments you get.

They more than make up for the days (and sometimes weeks) of blah that I sometimes feel when faced with current or impending projects.  Having given myself FINISH as my 2020 word, I’ve tasked myself with finishing as many of the stalled, abandoned, unloved and uninspired bits and pieces lurking in the dark corners of my Cupboard of All Colours. Half of the top shelf is the yarny stuff. I don’t knit, I can barely crochet, but I have trouble resisting really nice yarns, especially the tactile ones.

Woolly Thing was started six years ago, and is thoroughly stalled. It’s in two shades of variegated bouclé yarn, and was originally intended to be a large, thick and snuggly shawl for cool evenings, but it’s far too heavy for this climate.. Like so many things, my ambition outspanned my skill, and I abandoned it when it still lacked about 50cms of length. It was too hard, too hot to work on here in north Queensland and so warm, when would I wear it?

Enter the inspiration. I read Margaret’s recent post about the Skye Wrap she made, and the idea was born. I would convert Woolly Thing into a sort of Skye Wrap, but in crochet instead of woollen fabric, unlined, and with a closed shoulder instead of a button shoulder opening. It was already the perfect size. All I had to do was crochet the seam together, leaving enough of an opening for the head to pass through and a slight roll collar to form. It was done in an hour. I wove the ends in. All done. Now, what to do with it?

My friend Dale who lives and blogs in northern NSW, has the same winter climate as I used to have. We enjoy the same casual style of dressing. I thought she might give Woolly Thing a useful home. And she will! I’ll carry it down for her when we head south in mid February. I’m happy to think a sad abandoned project will have a new life keeping her warm in chilly weather.

On with the next thing!


In case anyone’s interested, the yarns are Moda Vera Beauty in Rust (wool/soya/acrylic) and Moda Vera Tarantino in Rust and Purple (wool/acrylic/polyester). Both handwashable at 30°.

66 thoughts on “Finish 2 of 2020: the Woolly Thing

  1. magpiesue says:

    What a brilliant solution. I love the shape and ease of that pseudo shawl. I could use a piece like it most of the year here! And another finish! Well done!

  2. kymlucas says:

    Love this. It looks great!

  3. I love the colors and the shape but even here, I rarely have need of anything very warm. It’s been unseasonably warm this winter but I do see a colder snap coming. I’m glad you found a friend who can use your ‘finished’ creation. More room for fabric now. 😉

    • katechiconi says:

      There’s still some of the yarn left, and I’m debating whether to donate it or make something with it. I wish I was better at crochet and had any skill at all at knitting…

      • I gave all my yarn to a niece and haven’t missed it a day. Paring down hobbies feels better. I’ll be starting soon on the finishing of projects, as soon as Christmas is fully stored away again. So much work and stuff even though we did minimal this year. Did you get my Christmas card yet?

      • katechiconi says:

        Not yet, I’m afraid. I’ll let you know as soon as I do. Can you remember what date you sent it on?

      • They said it was delivered Jan 3 at 1:39 pm.

      • katechiconi says:

        Not to this house… On Friday, I received cards from my sister in the Netherlands and my friend Anne in Melbourne and a card for the previous owner of the house but nothing else. Maybe on Monday… In any case, our mail is delivered in the morning, so I suspect it might have reached our local post office on that date, but hasn’t made it any further yet.

      • Maybe it will show up next week. At least it’s in the neighborhood. I was in Sidney on Dec 23. Very interesting to be able to track it these days.

      • katechiconi says:

        🙂 It can also be an exercise in frustration. I’ve watched something I needed badly sit in the post office for 3 days before it was finally delivered to my door. No one could explain why…

  4. Side Poncho style … I likes a lot & of course the same of the yarn has to have my name & a type of burnt orange…. namely Rust … in it … How could you go wrong 😄
    Well done on FINISH # 2 … and it’s not even the middle of Jan !!! ♥️

  5. anne54 says:

    Lucky Dale! You have such a generous spirit, Kate.

  6. Elaine says:

    Love it and the colors! Looks so comfy too. You are really on a roll in this new year – go for it! Such an inspiration!
    (I have to admit that you and yours have been on my mind, like daily, with the news of the devastating fires. I live in a forest and realize how terrifying they are. You are in my prayers, as is rain!)

    • katechiconi says:

      I’m glad you like it, and even gladder to have actually finished something again!
      The fires are unbelievable. 15 million acres of land burned, or 23,000 square miles. Over 2,500 buildings destroyed. At least 22 dead, probably more; they are still trying to find the missing. The navy is evacuating thousands. Meanwhile, our politicians go on vacation… We are unlikely to have any serious rain until May.

  7. Lynda says:

    I have never been a shawl or stole wearer. I hate having to hang onto them all the time. Your creation is perfect! It looks very soft and more like a short poncho. Very practical for those who are more active.

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s not even that short, halfway to my knees. It’s really inspired me to maybe make more like this; a garment that more or less assembles itself from just a wide scarf!

  8. Gosh you are setting quite the pace! This is lovely and of course extra lovely you have a friend to gift it to. I’m glad to realise you are not impacted by any of the fires now – I saw a map this morning that was truly horrifying! It’s no wonder we have a yellow haze covering the sky and the smell of smoke in our noses.

    • katechiconi says:

      Every morning I count my blessings. We get cyclones, but that doesn’t go on for weeks and weeks, or make people sick with smoke, or even kill people very often. I can’t quite grasp the scale of devastation, the entire communities destroyed, the vast forests gone up in smoke, and the loss of life. 22 so far, and rising.

      • I’ve been following your situation in the last few days Kate, it’s horrifying. It is hard to comprehend. I am wondering if this is our new normal. While parts of Australia burn, my part of NZ is living in eternal winter. Icy cold Antarctic gale-force winds, rain, (sleet this morning) and it seems the best we can manage is the odd hour or two of grey sky and a respite from wind and rain. When there is a short break in this onslaught and we are treated to a fine day the smoke from OZ floats in and makes everything an eerie yellowish other-worldly colour. With no summer to lift people I think we are going to be dealing with an upswing in depression and all the resultant behaviours and illnesses that brings.

      • katechiconi says:

        I hope it isn’t affecting your breathing. Australia’s running out of breathing masks – the fireys get through so many, and anyone in the smoke zone needs one. I wish someone would just fly in a plane load of them. It’s becoming a major medical problem. The weather is bizarre. You’re having Fimbulwinter, we’re getting Armageddon.

      • As Fimbulwinter precedes Ragnarok it seems we are both on course for the inevitable. We probably don’t have enough breathing masks in the entire country to cover your needs, but could certainly send a few hundred thousand. I’ll let Jacinda know.

      • katechiconi says:

        You do that! The guys will be grateful…

      • I did. I emailed her, but apart from the instant response automatically generated, haven’t heard back yet. I expect you’ll get a plane load dropped any day now 🙂

      • katechiconi says:

        Jacinda is a good egg, and is probably being bombarded by suggestions. You guys are already lending firefighters.

  9. nanacathy2 says:

    It’s so lovely and snuggly looking, and what a clever solution to your problem. I love that you have two finishes under your belt already.

    • katechiconi says:

      It is cosy and snuggly, and when I lived up a mountain in northern NSW I’d have lived in it. Just now, though, it’s over 30°C every day and not much less at night, so once I’d closed off that shoulder seam, I was very glad to get it out of my lap!

  10. tialys says:

    An inspired finish and a great excuse for a gift giving opportunity.

  11. claire93 says:

    that’s a gorgeous finish!

  12. gwenniesgardenworld says:

    This looks lovely ! When I first saw this picture I thought what is Kate going to do with this ???? But then I read your text and saw it was for a friend. I can well imagine why you have so many friends !!:D

  13. Sharon says:

    It couldn’t be more perfect!

  14. craftycreeky says:

    It looks fab! Thanks for the link, I love my Skye wrap and clearly here in Yorkshire I have lots of use for warm wraps!! Glad you’re out of the danger zone now, I have family on the edge of Sydney with bags packed in case they need to get out so we’re watching the news closely.

  15. three cheers for a finished project and it looks so warm and cozy. Lucky friend.

  16. kathyreeves says:

    What a genius solution and take off from Margaret’s Skye wrap! Wonderful that you could gift it to your friend!

  17. I love the colours.. a while ago browsing a trash and treasure market I picked up a jumper in similar hues but it was a little tight…hhmmmm. You know I’m going to wear this to death… with jeans and my favourite boots… all winter, so I’m pleased you included the care instructions.

  18. cedar51 says:

    somebody has probably already said it about your “yarn stash” but you could wind the yarn onto to something like a yard stick shape (short/long//wide) and then make yourself a wall piece, that reminds you why you bought the delicious yarn in the first place…or if you (as a quilter) store your fabric on comic backing boards, those too would be good to wind yarn around, giving you a bigger “canvas” …. or that seems to hard to deal with, create “salad” bowl that sits looking at your from a table or whatever…

    • katechiconi says:

      These are all gorgeous suggestions! However, further delving has revealed that my yarn collection isn’t that big, and I have decided to engage with it and actually make stuff to give away to friends. Since I have no idea what size it will be once crocheted up, the ideas evolve on an hourly basis as I use it up! By the end of the forthcoming week, I should have another new finish to show 🙂

  19. Joanne S says:

    Lucky Dale, indeed! That’s my kind of snuggly comfort. Could use it today as a matter of fact. Australia’s plight has been in our local papers all during the holidays. I can’t even fathom the enormity. What I have not seen, but certainly hope, is that other countries are sending equipment (people) to help the battle. I am so sorry.

    • katechiconi says:

      I think we are getting overseas firefighters in – Canada, the US, New Zealand, etc – and I believe we’ve been loaned a fire bomber. The trouble is, there’s just so much area to cover. Already, far more has burned than your own horrendous California fires…

  20. What a gorgeous gift! It’s the kid of thing you can dress up or down. Love it 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      Far more than the pleasure of giving something useful is the pleasure of realising I’ve rescued something I thought was lots of work but a hopeless case. Woolly Thing Lives!

  21. I see you are a “word of the year” person also. It’s a great idea.
    Your gift is absolutely beautiful.. hope it is the first of many finishes for you.

    • katechiconi says:

      It often doesn’t last much past May or so, but I find it a useful post-Christmas motivator 🙂 I do have a bit of a Finish list to deal with so this particular word might actually get a bit more of a workout than previous examples!

  22. rutigt says:

    That´s a great idea for a project you want to finish, but not really want for yourself! So warm and cosy for your friend!

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