While I was in Sierra Leone, the second project I worked on (besides some socks) was a shawl for my sister. It's her Christmas present, but she's going to be in Peru till January so it doesn't need to be done at Christmas. She's never seemed like a shawl person, but she said she'd like one, so of course I sprung into action!
She definitely seems like a geometric pattern person (rather than a leaf-y or flowery pattern person), so I'm making the faux Russian Stole from A Gathering of Lace. (It's faux because instead of knitting the center then adding the border, you knit the border as you go.) I've liked the pattern for a while, and Rachel provided the perfect excuse to make it.
Naturally, since I don't need to be finished till sometime in January (and my family is so laid back about presents that that's not really a firm deadline either), it's zipping along. (I'm about half done, and I'm not trying that hard.)
I'm using one of the skeins of Zephyr wool & silk from the group order the SnBers placed a while back, and I love it. It's the third (I think) time I've used this yarn, and it's lovely--you know how there are some yarns that are just quietly wonderful, without having any one amazing thing (say, being hand-dyed or made of cashmere) you can put your finger on? That's how I feel about Zephyr. Clearly, the merino and silk have everything to do with the wonderful-ness, but it doesn't scream Merino! And! Silk!
(I decided it was okay to write about the shawl, even though it's a present, because she picked it, I warned her it might be grey, and besides her internet time is somewhat limited--she's mostly emailing, not scouring the knitting blogs for hints about Christmas presents. Although speak up now if you're reading this, Rachel, and I won't post a post-blocking picture till after you've received the real thing.)