Saturday, October 23, 2010

October Knitting Difficulties

I'm suffering from a bout of OKD.  It seems like my knitting mojo could maybe use a poke with a sharp stick.  Yes, I’m getting things done, however (and a big one it is); some things are taking much longer and proving to be much more complicated than they need to be.  The Baby Sweater for example.   I found a really cute sweater pattern in a book and was going to make a minor modification to the stitch pattern and the button band, but otherwise tried to follow the directions, somehow I ended up with 5” armholes and 3” sleeves… hmmmm.  Ripped, reknit and turned into one Baby Surprise Jacket and one Baby hat.  My sock mojo seems to be especially off kilter lately.  Try as I might, I haven’t been able to start a pair of socks and just knit them; never mind recognizing/admitting that there is a problem before I get to the start of the heel.  Double hmmmmmm. In September, I tried a few quickie projects to get me out of the knitting thicket, but that doesn’t seem to be of much help in October.  After the Baby Sweater incident, I decided to focus on finishing one pair of socks. (I now had a second pair on the needles).  So I did.  I finished the pair that I started in late September (ripped once). 

Over all I really liked the pattern and will put it on my “go to” list for a nice unisex sock pattern.    Even though the second sock contains the exact same number of rounds, etc as the first one, it is ever so slightly longer than the first. I’m not sure exactly what happened. I suppose it is a row gauge thing.  But, since I noticed this after I bound off… there is now no turning back! 

Mini-Cable Sandal Socks by Dez Crawford
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock Multi Purple Club (701)
Size 2.25 mm needles dpn

I also discovered these socks were extremely difficult to photograph, the color in this picture is about two shades darker than the actual color. 

Then I worked a few rounds on my shawl to try to stay on track with my Knitting To-do LIST.  So far so good, then I decided to work on the other pair of socks.  I knit, I admired, I thought “hmm, this might be a little largish” I continued to knit.  I got to the point where the pattern says “Begin Heel” I cursed.  “Largish” is just another way of saying I knew my gauge was off, but ignored my inner Elizabeth and kept knitting.  She knew better, I knew better.  I put it away and reached my goal on the shawl.  I weighed the completed portion of the sock; I weighed the unused portion of the yarn ball; hmmm, the sock leg weighed 41 grams, the yarn weighed 77 grams… by my calculations, Houston isn’t the only one who has a problem… double hmmm.  You can guess what happened next.  Yup -- riiiiip! I started over with a smaller size needle.  (Size 0 to be exact) I’m still suspicious of the gauge, but they are coming out slightly smaller now.  I finished the 10 repeats for the leg and this thing looks huge… talked to my DD, she quelled my fears that I’m knitting a couch cozy in the guise of a sock. Whew, thought for a minute this thing was going to be flung across the room.  Good thing my SIL is a big guy; it should fit, but I might need more yarn… contemplating contrasting heels and toes.  Sock is in time out while I think about that.  Yesterday, I cast on for another pair and so far have knit a toe.

Between socks, I thought I’d do up another quickie project.  Righto!  I had purchased a kit for felted cup cozies when I went to the knit night at the yarn shop here in Des Moines.  I thought “here’s a real quick project that should be just the thing to get me back on track”.  The knitting went fine.  I even worked up my own version for the design on the second cup; but the felting? That was another story indeed. New house, new washer, and no clue as to how well it would felt.  The verdict is… not very well.  (I’m sure as soon as I turn my back on it and accidentally put something I don’t want to be felted into a load, that thing will come out fairy-size).  So after three cycles through the machine, I ended up hand felting the cozies… my, but they did turn out nicely. 

Felted Cup Cozy Kit from Knitted Together pattern by Nancy Wyatt
Yarn: Cascade 220
Size 8 needles

Oh, and my shawl?  It is (still) coming along slowly.  I don’t know how Wendy knocks a shawl out in 10 days or less (while working a full time Government job, knitting, blogging, designing and writing books).  I’ve arrived at the point in the shawl where I have 576 stitches on my needle.  No, it won’t hurt my feelings if you just gasped.  To put that into perspective; it takes approximately 8 rounds on a sock to get one round done on this shawl.  Or 16 rows of a heel flap. Oh and that’s a 72 stitch sock.  I usually knit mine on 60 stitches.   When I arrived at 288 stitches I put stitch markers in every 18 stitches (two repeats of pattern).  That worked nicely until I increased to 576… I ran out of stitch markers.  Now my markers were every 36 stitches (4 pattern repeats).  On the plain knit row; I count 1 to 36, over and over (Is this what OCD feels like?).  I was sort of losing it.  I pillaged my craft area looking for more plain markers and found none (they were already in the shawl).  Eureka! I found some plain jump rings in the right size. 
 Now I have things back to a manageable marker every 18 stitches.  (Something about counting to 18 just seems easier).  I only need to do about 36 more rounds before the final increase round and bind off.   Barring any knitting difficulties, I think maybe I’ll finish it up by February.  

I got a new knitting magazine in the mail the other day; maybe I’ll peruse it for an easy, fun and fabulous project to perk me up.  Or maybe, just maybe I’ll start the next round on the shawl.  I’ll let you know what happens.

Happy Knitting!


1 comment:

SciFiTVFanGirl said...

I believe that *hugs* are in order. I have been there, it gets better. I hope your OKDs pass soon! Remember, you do this because you love it!