A lesson I've learned is that non-knitters do not appreciate knitted gifts. Take last year when I spent hours knitting a pink scarf out of imported Italian novelty yarn, blend of fibers. The sister-in-law I gave it to gave me an acrylic hat and scarf set from the dollar store.
So I vowed not to knit a gift unless someone specifically expressed an interest. But, I have found this gets you in trouble too. A woman I know expressed a love for the baby mohair shawl I was knitting this summer using Anny Blatt Fine Kid Mohair yarn. She just loved the soft touch of the yarn. So I offered to knit a simple scarf for her. I had enough of the powder pink lace weight yarn left over for a good sized rectangle. Then the problems began.
Turns out the shade of pink was not to her liking. So I bought the kid mohair in black since it didn't come in a darker pink. I had knit about a foot when she saw it. The lace weight yarn was to thin for her liking. She wanted a thicker scarf.
I gave up on the baby mohair and bought pink Steinbach Wolle Jumbo in dark pink wool. It's a soft wool/polyamid blend in a Sport weight. I began yet another scarf. (See pic of assistant #2, Klaus Kinski holding circular needle down while I take a photo)This one a simple knitted lace pattern. But, still we're talking lace knitting here. She saw this, made a face and said, "Let me show you the scarf my sister made, I really love it." Out of the closet she pulled a 5 foot long by 9 inches wide garter stitch rectangle made from 100% acrylic bulky craft yarn. There was about 6 inches of plain fringe on both ends.
We're talking acrylic and garter stitch.
At this point I have lost all interest in knitting gifts for people. I unraveled the foot of black mohair and am using it for another project. I'll finish the pink lace scarf in the long run and put it in the storage bin of finished projects under my bed.
So take this as a warning to choose wisely, whom you decide to knit for.
I think I will go through my stash and see if there is yarn scarf for myself. If not, I'll get some cashmere in a great color and knit a scarf for myself. I already have two skeins of red variegated koigu waiting to become my new socks. And there is the alpaca sweater half way finished for myself. Ah, I feel better already.