If You’re Happy and You Know It….

As the holidays draw closer and closer, it seems that my blog postings will inevitably become farther and farther apart.  I would really like to be able to carve out a chunk of every day to
record my adventures in knitting, but between working overtime, taking care of the cats, and spending time with Bob, my time is  not always my own. And if I have just an hour in the evening to do something all by myself… well, I can’t blog and knit at the same time!

The good news is that when I do post, it means that there will lots to talk about! Personally, I would rather read blogs where the posts are less frequent, but more relevant, and I hope you feel the same.

So, onto the first exciting bit of news:

Clapfinish

Pattern: Clapotis by Kate Gilbert from the Fall ’04 Knitty

Yarn: Lorna’s Laces Lion and Lamb, a lovely and luxurious silk/wool blend in color #18 Watercolors

Needles: Addi Turbos 24" circular US size 6

Cast On/Cast Off: 10/20/2006 – 11/14/2006

What can I say about the Clap that hasn’t already been said by all the lucky people who knit one a couple years ago, before I was really "hip" to online knitting culture? I’m in love. Love, love, love, love, love, love.

Normally, I’m pretty ambivalent about my projects once they come off the needles. (Could this be why they so rarely do?) With a few notable exceptions, I’m much more into the
process than the product. However, where the Clap is concerned, I really feel like I got the best of both worlds- a pattern that was incredibly fun to knit in a yarn that is just to die for, and a finished object that I almost never take off.

A little technical errata: I chose to forego the use of markers and instead borrowed the technique of using purl stitches to mark the stitches that will eventually be dropped from Needles & Hooks. I think this was a great decision, since it made the knitting more interesting. It also saved me the time and trouble of buying, losing, placing and replacing
dozens of stitch markers.

Also, by the grace of the Gods and Goddesses of Knitting, I only used up three skeins of yarn with a decent amount leftover. (Most people seem to run out and have to buy a fourth, which is kind of a big deal since each skein costs 32.00.) I experienced the same phenomenon recently when I knit the Fetching mitts. So many people were running out of yarn that the pattern was edited to suggest buying a second ball of yarn. I made my thumbs twice as long as the pattern called for and still have several yards left over. Why do my stitches consume fewer yards than those of the average knitter?

I’m not sure, but the only thing I can come up with is that I knit very, very loosely. Whenever I set out to knit something from a pattern, I check the suggested needle size and swatch with a needle two sizes smaller- and I’m usually spot on. I don’t feel like I knit super-extra loose, but suspect that it’s a side effect of having large hands and long fingers. (See below, my hand on a Knitscene magazine, which you can use as a point of reference.)

Knitscenehand

(Oh, and sorry my Clap picture sucks. It made Bob take it the second it was finished, so no natural light and I’m in my PJ’s. I keep meaning to take it out for a proper fashion shoot,  so maybe with the long weekend coming up I’ll get some better ones up.)

Do you remember my top secret birthday sock project? Well, the birthday has come and gone, the socks were delivered on time and were very appreciated by the birthday girl. Since I couldn’t put progress pictures on the blog, I never took any! I wish I would have now, since I had to steal my only picture from Liz’s blog. In the future, I will try to better document gift knitting, whether I’m blogging it as I go or not. My local knitting friends have all seen the socks in person by now, but in case you haven’t… (drumroll please!)

Lizsocks

Pattern: Broadripple Socks by Rob Matyska from the Summer ’03 Knitty

Yarn: Cascade Fixation in color #9398, variegated pink

Needles: 2 24" circular Addi Turbos, US size 1

Movies Watched: The Little Mermaid, The Sound of Music, The Departed, The Grudge, Carnival of Souls, and Texas Chainsaw Massacre (remake)

Cast On/Cast Off: I can’t rember for sure, but it was sometime in mid October. It took me about a month to finish them, all told.

I really enjoyed this sock. The pattern is interesting, but doesn’t require too much concentration. For some reason, I had a terrible trouble getting my eyelets to line up right over the first few rows, and had to rip them out over and over. Fortunately, this yarn holds up beautifully to repeated rippings.

And while we’re on the subject, I definitely liked working with Cascade Fixation. It took me a while to get used to the sproinginess (is that a word?) of the yarn, but once I adjusted to it I was hooked. I will definitely be using it again, hopefully to adorn my own feet.

If you happen to knit this sock, and you make a mistake, I strongly recommend that you rip back to a row of plain knitting, so that the row you’ll be knitting on that round is the pattern row. It’s too much trouble to pick up all those yarn overs.

More on what’s in my rotation now that two major projects are out of it…  tomorrow. (I promise!) 

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2 Comments »

  1. Tara said

    whereas I knit very tightly (I usually start 1 size bigger to swatch). Could this be connected somehow to my A-personality issues? hmmm….
    Needless to say, “sproingy” yarn does not work well for me!

  2. jessie said

    sproing…i like that…

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