One project down in the Gift-Along – this pattern started showing up in the FO thread almost immediately, proving the truth in the name: the "2-hour Artist's Loop", by Faye Kennington.
A friend gave me this handspun art yarn a few years ago and while it's obviously quite something, I had no idea what to do with it. Well... not quite true. I was pretty sure it was going to end up as a garter stitch cowl of some sort (because what else are you going to do with 75m of crazy flowered yarn?), but a few rounds of plain garter stitch just didn't seem very inspiring. So when I saw this, I was immediately sold. It is, indeed, a plain garter stitch cowl. But it's FUN.
Bonus: you can change the look quite significantly by just shifting it around, so the buttons are placed front, back or side!
It's really disproportionately satisfying, having made this and being able to move the yarn from my "in stash" tab to "all used up". Making something with it was never going to take me long, but it might have taken me forever to actually get around to. A gift, all made up in a couple of hours and with no leftovers to speak of – fabulous. Perfect example of the GAL delivering inspiration, opportunity and motivation all in one!
I've cast on two further projects – Jozi socks (in some South African yarn, for maximum homesickness) and a Syxx hat. It's going to take me a bit more time to finish these gifts, but I'm already looking forward to my next GAL project after the hat: a Hap cardigan, for me! That got bumped to the top of my queue when I became aware of a significant wardrobe lack. Winter has me always putting cardigans on, then taking them off because they're too warm, then putting them on again because I'm too cold... a lovely light, sleeveless knit like this could be just the thing.
Astute observers may note that two of the above four patterns weren't even in my declaration of intent. You might say I'm easily distracted, or have no willpower. I say I'm enthusiastic. Much like this golden retriever, whose priorities are clearly in the right place.
(Video shared by my friend Jo, who claims this dog is her spirit animal. I feel you, Jo. I feel you.)