“Double double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble”
My Halloween package has made its way to the recipient, so it’s time to show you what I put together for her. I’m still overwhelmed by what my sweet swap partner gave me and have been enjoying what she sent to me.
As you might be able to tell from the quote and the picture, I made a cauldron-themed parcel. Now it is not a requirement that the package be themed (well, it needs to be Halloween) but I really enjoy coordinating items together. I just can’t do random assemblages.
Things were set into motion with the discovery of these amazing chocolate bars at Michaels.
Granted, there’s not a cauldron on the packaging, but you can see how it would easily fit in. Isn’t that label amazing?? It was hard to send that away – I wanted to frame it. I found several fall-flavored caramels and a package of dip mix shaped like a tombstone. That was the easy bit. I had hit on the idea early on of finding a small plastic cauldron to put the treats in – the clinchpin on the theme. I went to about 10 places and searched online trying to find something. Did you know your chances of finding a 5″ plastic cauldron at Halloween this year are about zilch?? Finally I decided I’d just get a ceramic cauldron mug I had seen at Target that came with a pumpkin cake mix you could microwave in the cup. I figured I’d throw the cake mix away and use it for the goodies and then she could have a mug to use. Perfect! So I went back to Target and they were sold out. My sanity started to fray. But they did get in some more a week or two later, so that was wonderful. And it was a big hit. At the same time I was attacking the knitted project with gusto.
I had decided to knit her a cowl and she liked stripes. After much searching on Ravelry, I settled on a pattern called “Roo-Loop” – it’s a long cowl knit with an inset pocket to carry a phone or act as a muffler. This was a bit ambitious as I don’t do 3-D assembly and reading through those directions of knitting a tube within a tube made my head spin. Nevertheless I thought she’d really like it and I found the yarn I was looking for at a local knit shop – beautiful dark gray and poison green – perfect cauldron colors.
I happily started knitting along (you might remember I marked the momentous occasion in a blog post early September). Then I realized after hours of knitting the first section that I had overlooked a crucial bit of the instructions. I had to get creative on dealing with that mistake. Things progressed more or less calmly enough until the pocket. I was concerned about that, but it went together without a single hitch. It was just taking much longer than I expected to knit it. It has 12 sections, and each one was requiring hours to knit. I started taking it to work to knit during lunch breaks. It soon became the only project I worked on for weeks trying to make the deadline. I literally was knitting on it in my dreams. I had started off affectionately calling it “Elphie” because the colors reminded me of my dear Elphaba from Wicked. But after weeks of knitting, I started calling in “Nagini” in open hostility. It looked like the big snake from Harry Potter. The cowl was 71″ long (because I insisted on knitting the long size) and trailed around me like a large python wrapping around my waist and legs. I was convinced it was evilly unknitting itself at nights. My other projects wondered why they were in time out. I was pretty stressed about finishing it. But I finally made it – only a few days past the target ship date.
We also needed to include a card. No problem there. I have tons of Halloween stamps, including a set with …. you guessed it, a cauldron! Here’s her card.
Very festive, no? I have a confession – I actually bought this set solely for the frog. I love that little frog! Because everything has to coordinate to the last detail, I also stamped some tags from the same set to decorate the other items. The caramels were wrapped up in spiderweb cellophane and topped off with this tag.
I tied a tombstone label with green ribbon to the chocolate bar and tombstone party mix. And I made a larger haunted house label for the cowl with pattern, yarn, and care directions on the back. A few glitter spiders hopped on for the ride too. So here’s everything right before I packed it up.
I heard from the recipient today and she loved it. She posted a very nice summary on our Ravelry board and then sent me a private email to thank me for the items. She’s already worn the cowl and I think she genuinely is pleased with what I sent. Her note made everything worthwhile. All in all, I really enjoyed making everything – just next time I’ll think twice about knitting a 70″ long infinity cowl on a time-crunch. Oh, and my BC projects (Before Cowl) and I are getting reacquainted and I think they’ve forgiven me for my lapse in knitting them.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Blessings to you,