Thursday, August 28, 2008

Looking Good, Feeling Good

I have just finished the waist decreases for the second time. It is so much cuter this time. I am doing my best to knit loosely. Sarah said that the pattern calls for loose sock yarn knit loosely. My gauge is staying steady, it's not getting tighter and tighter like it did on my pink tee. Anyway, alternating the two skeins has been just what this project needed. It looks nice and variegated, no crazy pools of color. I noticed that with all of the messing around I did on the poor first hank of yarn that it's color isn't as brilliant as the second. You see, I had only ever wound chunky yarn from a hank into a ball, so the first hank of my beautiful Lime n Violet turned into a bit of a birds nest towards the end. I then used it on the first attempt at my "Kaleidoscope," which in turn was frogged. Alternating the two skeins is blending all of these color variations quiet nicely. It's actually looking like I had envisioned. I will keep you posted. It is really fun for me. Knitting has really been good for me.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Knitting is a Process

I was cruising right along. Flying as a matter of fact. Totally excited by my new project. I was using my sock yarn on a cute sweater pattern. The further I went along, the more decreases I did, the more the color puddled. All of a sudden my lime n violet "kaleidoscope" was green spots with purple and white stripes. Not so cute anymore. I finally admitted it wasn't going to be something I would wear, with the big lime green dots and all. Can you see where this is going? Frog city. I went to a few websites and learned a few things and thought I would try again.

I also received a wool-winder in the mail yesterday as well. This made frogging a quick and fairly painless process. I cast on again, this time with a cable cast-on and not the long-tail. The long tail makes the bottom of the cast on have the variegated colorway go in reverse, it wasn't cute. Cable cast-on kept the color that was being cast-on the needle together and was all ready much prettier. The other decision I made was to alternate my skeins of yarn every two rows. I am hoping that this keeps the "puddles" down to a minimum and keeps the variegated look to my sweater. I am going to keep going and I think it's going to be much better.

I also have been studying the provisional cast-0n as well. This sweater is a bottom-up raglan cardigan. I have made one top-down and am slowly wrapping my brain around how it will work in reverse. The provisional cast-on seems simple enough. I just going to follow the pattern, maybe adding an inch to the length, and a few extra stitches to the armpits, and see what I end up with. Just keep knitting.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Just Keep Knitting

I've cast on my "Kaleidoscope." It's going well. I have finished the waist decreases. I have to say I was quite encouraged when I got a message on my ravelry page from Sarah Sutherland about my gauge issues. She wrote this pattern and had some good advice for me. It really meant a lot to me and wiped away my fear of having something I worked so hard on not fit AGAIN!! I have to remember that this is a process. I am pretty new to all of this. I have no experience putting garments together. I am learning on the fly.
I felt energized to keep knitting after I read my message from Sarah. The song from "Finding Nemo" that Ellen DeGeneris's character Dory sings "Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming" popped into my head only I sing "Just keep knitting, knitting, knitting!"

Thursday, August 21, 2008


I have just finished checking my gauge on my new swatches. The swatches are for two new projects. I want to be very careful because so far I am having trouble getting things to fit me. I got gauge on both of these projects with one size larger needle than suggested. I just cast on for one cardigan. I will get it going and then cast on for my next project soon. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Gauge Trouble

So, I am having trouble getting things the right size for myself. The first tank top I made for myself fit my chest, but was way too big everywhere else. I just made myself a shapely tank, that became a tee because I had enough yarn for short sleeves. I tried it on and it is pretty tight. Part of the problem was that I lost gauge. It is too tightly knit. I knit my swatch and I knew it was a little tight, but I am still not quite sure what to do when I'm off a bit. In this case I think I should've knit with one size larger needle. Live and learn. It is supposed to be a process.

I don't have a single thing on the needles right now. I have to admit that I'm a little nervous to start something new, with the last couple of things coming out suspect. I hope to figure out first of all how to get gauge. Second of all how to fit all of my shapes and sizes. I have long arms, big chest, small waist and a not so small hips yet not so huge either. I would love to make the "Kaleidoscope" sweater from Parallax knitting by Sarah Sutherland. It is made with sock yarn and to get gauge, it either has to be doubled or very loosely knit. I am not sure the best way to go about this. I'm about to set out on this journey to find out.

My hope is to figure the math out for fitting a sweater perfectly for me. That obviously is the goal when we start a project for ourselves. I will just keep on my journey to nicely fit knitted garments. I love to knit and will be happy to keep practicing until I figure it out.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Lots of knitting

I went on my big trip to the skating Nationals and I did pretty well. I placed second in my dance event and fourth in my figure event. Pretty good since it is the National championships. I'm really proud of myself. I held my composure and just did my thing. While I was there in my down time I did tons of knitting. That was the best distraction to keep my nerves in check. It was great. I also got most of my "Shapely Tee" from finished. It was great.
I had watched a great video of Cat Bordhi doing short rows on "youtube." It made me feel quite smart when I was attempting the short rows in my sweater. It didn't trip me up at all. I sailed right through the sort row shaping at the bottom edge of my tank (that became a tee because I had such great yarn and plenty left for sleeves.) It is made out of Rowan RYC silk wool dk. It is fabulous feeling, especially after blocking.
I was noticing in a lot of podcasts and knitting blogs that a lot of people spend a lot of time trying to avoid seaming. It was making me nervous because my sweater is in four pieces. When I didn't know better, the first sweater I had knit for my daughter was in pieces and had four colors worth of stripes, it seamed together beautifully. Anyway, I thought am I crazy for doing this in pieces. I seamed it up today a little differently than the pattern, I did it like the first sweater I made. I sewed the caps of the sleeves, leaving the sides of the garment open. I then seamed up the side and the underside of the sleeve. It worked out great. Oh yeah, I had also found a video of Kelley Petken of knitpicks doing kitchener stitch on youtube. I used the kitchener for grafting the front and back of the garment. It made total sense. I sent her a message telling her how great her video is. She told me to go forth and let all knitters know that kitchener stitch is actually pretty easy.
I have two projects off the needles and none on. It is time to set forth on another knitting adventure.