Baby's 1st Christmas (Photo - Petr Kratochvil).

      Baby’s 1st Christmas (Photo – Petr Kratochvil).

      It’s that time of year again. The time when we start thinking about what to get those in our lives for Christmas.

      By Robin Southworth

      Make something that you get to customize it for the person. You may think it takes too much time, but some projects are quick. Here are additional ideas for unique and personalized knitted gifts.


      Knitted socks (Photo - Jenn, flickr).

      Knitted socks (Photo – Jenn, flickr).

      Socks are not the quickest of knits, but they are immensely satisfying to make and warm and cozy for the person receiving them.

      For some knitters, the hardest part is “turning the heel” (aka making the actual heel). If you’ve never knit a pair of socks, I suggest knitting a pair in a worsted weight yarn. The larger yarn makes it easier to see what you’re doing, figure out how to turn the heel, and find mistakes. I can’t turn a heel without looking at how-to directions. The hard part for me is actually getting the sock long enough. I believe my next pair of socks will be knit from the toe up so I can check the length as I knit.

      Electronics Cozy

      Laptop cover (Photo - David Borad).

      Laptop cover (Photo – David Borad).

      This could be for a cell phone, a laptop/notebook, tablet, or mp3 player.

      The smaller these are, the quicker they are to knit. If you felt it, give yourself some extra time for the felting to dry completely. I have seen these knit out of all kinds of yarn – wool, wool-blend, cotton, silk, and nylon.

      Men’s Ties

      (L to R) linen, acrylic, and hand-dyed wool, designed and knit by Robin Southworth. (Photo - Robin Southworth).Men’s ties are surprisingly quick. I knitted the three ties in the photo.

      The hardest part for me was finding the right yarn. It had to be light enough to tie properly, but heavy enough to hang right. The tie on the left was knit in a linen yarn in a seed stitch. It is a lightweight tie, but the linen and the stitch used gives it a substantial look. The tie in the middle is a generic work tie. The yarn is nylon and has multiple colored fibers in it. From a distance it looks blue; up close it takes on a multi-dimensional texture that is quite pleasant. The tie on the right was knit out of Manos del Uruguay (color: wildflower), an Aran weight yarn, heavier than I might normally use, but the color was too striking to ignore. Each of these ties took me one evening to knit.

      Dime Bags

      Dime-Bag (Photo - Robin Southworth).A wee version of a cell phone cozy, but to keep things like lip balm, emergency currency, or a spare key in.

      Add a decorative toggle to close the bag and voila! A stocking stuffer. Easy to make out of left over yarn. Don’t tell me you don’t have leftover yarn.

      Table Place Settings

      Holiday knitting (Photo - William Murphy).

      Holiday knitting (Photo – William Murphy).

      A set of place settings for a holiday, a special occasion, or even an everyday meal can be a lovely gift and doesn’t have to take a lot of time to create.

      In fact, the longest part of knitting a place setting can be a specialty stitch, such as a lace edging or a specific pattern. Choose a non-fuzzy, non-bulky yarn and you are on your way.

      Now get out there and knit a beautiful gift!

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