I love the holidays for so many reasons. I adore the celebrations. The time with my family is the most precious thing in the world to me. I’m a huge fan of winter, and love the twinkly lights and evergreen smells that abound. There’s no better time to pull up with a warm mug of tea and some great wool.

But most of all, I love the gifts. I come from a family of gift-givers. There was very little to spare, when I was growing up, but we were constantly giving one another little gifts that we’d made, all the same – cards, little poems, bits of this and that we’d created with our hands.

At a very young age, I came to appreciate and understand what we’re truly doing, when we create something for someone else: We’re giving them the gift of love. We’re taking the wonderful feelings we have for that person and looping them through one another, creating an unbroken cloth of warmth and coziness. We’re giving time, and care, and thought, and love. It’s an incredible, powerful set of gifts for a person.

And when those gifts also happen to serve the purpose of keeping us warm on a blustery day? Well. There’s nothin’ better.

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And if you’re in the mood for a last-minute holiday gift of warmth and love, I hope you find this hat/mitt set helpful.

The Noanet Peak set knits up quickly, is cozy warm, and has kicky stripes to keep you interested…

…while being easy enough to knit when you’ve got other things on your mind. It’s available in my Ravelry Store for US $5.00 or by clicking here:

Noanet Peak is worked in Green Mountain Spinnery Alpaca Elegance, in Rosehip (MC) with Ceylon, Cream, Cappuccino, and Chai accents.

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All pieces are constructed in the round, and offer a great way to use up small amounts of very special yarn. It’s also part of the Back Roads & Brownstones series of patterns that the wonderful Kirsten Kapur and I have been working on. (Wait till you see her final sweater!)

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The hat and mitts are both intended to be just a little slouchy, just a little broken-in in feeling. They should give you a hug, rather than stretch sleekly over your skin. I wanted the fingerless mitts, in particular, to feel like legwarmers, but for your arms – so they’re shaped, with a long, slightly-slouched length.

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I can’t say enough lovely things about the yarn. The Alpaca Elegance is soft, and ever-so-slightly fuzzy, and comes in a wonderful palette of colors. Can you imagine these in a lighter main color, with ombre stripes? Greens and browns? That beautiful blue, with red and tan accents?

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All pieces are constructed in the round, and offer a great way to use up small amounts of very special yarn. And whoever you’re knitting for, they’re sure to be cozy and warm when they wear your gift. I’m thinking of making a couple of sets, this year.