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Home : Community : Newsletters & Stories

Newsletters & Stories

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The Gala New Year's Evening
By: Joanne Seiff

When Pat asked me to go to his family’s New Year’s Eve gathering, it was no small thing. As his young friend, I might not be up to the event. He walked the half mile over to my house one evening early in December to inspect my red velvet cocktail dress and pronounced it acceptable. He took me out on my parents’ back deck and taught me to waltz over piles of fallen leaves. Weeks before the big day, I anticipated something special.

The night arrived, and his parents welcomed us into their front parlor, redolent with spicy rich food smells and chatter. China, crystal and candles topped a long table. From the first moment, all Pat’s family friends, his older sisters and their dates made a fuss over me. At fourteen, I was the youngest at the party, but Pat had a surprise. He wanted me to make a splash. My fifteenth birthday was early in January, and the family toasted me as I opened Pat’s present, a perfect symbol of my status, on the teetering brink between childhood and a future as a young adult. His gift, a wry book of letters called The Jolly Postman, filled with charming pictures and a missive on each page, entertained the crowd. Everyone passed it around and read it aloud as we settled down to an elegant supper.

Click here for the pattern.
Glittery Evening Bag

Paella and champagne kept us lively, the evening passing in a blur of twinkling light and laughter. Towards midnight, we traveled the short distance to Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center to welcome the New Year. We danced in the grand foyer as a string orchestra played Viennese waltzes.

Nearly 20 New Year’s Eves later, I still get a thrill thinking of that magical evening. I’ve spent several New Year’s Eves with Pat since then, several with my husband, and many more in far less elegant circumstances. Pat helped me prepare for his family’s big event and built the anticipation long in advance. Give yourself a chance to anticipate a stylish start to 2007, or a fabulous evening out at any time of year. Knit yourself a glittery evening bag, just in case.

Need help with this pattern? Click here and let us know how we can be of assistance! 

Authored by Joanne Seiff

Joanne Seiff is a writer and knitwear designer.  She can be contacted at and through her website.
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