Wednesday, August 30, 2006
I realized the folly of my troubles and began anew. None of my efforts proved successful. My knitting never grew more than an inch. I had to ask the eternal question, "Why doesn't my knitting look like the picture?" I have yet to learn the answer. I grew more and more frustrated snapping at everyone in my wake. Violence and knitting are happy bedfellows.
Finally I gave up and switched to worsted weight yarn. I mean, could I even attempt to see what I was doing? Myopia and knitting are also happy bedfellows. The worsted weight attempts required multiple rebirths of swatch. I made it halfway through the pattern and called proclaimed myself triumphant. I've left the stupid swatch to knitting amnesia for now.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
In the meantime, I'll be working on some way to express my lace hijinks. Needless to say, knitting in paradise has moved from lace knitting to blocks seaming.
Monday, August 21, 2006
I've seen the movie at least twice and still find it every bit as hilarious as the first viewing. Adding to my delight, I notice new funnies every time! My last viewing caught the Lily Tomlin character knitting. How could I have missed that before? Anyway, this throws a couple of movie critics into frenzies. What does it all mean?
Clearly they're not knitters.
Friday, August 18, 2006
I've got a real live vacation coming up. I'll be sitting on the hot sand, feeling the breeze, drinking a coconut full of liquor. Part of this happy scene will involve knitting something. I've got at least 12 hours worth of traveling and five days off. Clearly, I am bound to finish something in this time of unfettered knitting.
What should I make? It needs plastic needles so I'm not bothered by the airport people unlike the time my hairpiece set off the censors. It's got to have a short pattern so that I don't have to lug some heavy book around. I can't have all kinds of knitting notions flying all over the plane. I'm not trying to lose a stitch marker under the seat cushion. You stick your hand under there in hot pursuit and emerge with a layer of unidentifiable grime under your nails. You can't touch your knitting or anything else after that. Evidently, I might even find a snake in between the seats.
I'm thinking "dramatic diamond wrap" from knitpicks, but I don't have the pattern. I'm sure it's too difficult. I need my patterns remedial. And I have no yarn. What to do? What to do?
My fingers tremble, the sweat beads up. I have placed my very first internet order for yarn at knitpicks. UGH! Credit cards are way too convenient. They are precisely for saps like me who pretend that they actually have the money represented by the credit. Sigh. Oh well. I anxiously await my yarn and the pattern and hope I don't lose consciousness when I take a look at it.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Let this serve as a lesson to all. I was so excited to delve into my brand new beautiful merino wool yarn that I did not take the time to wind the yarn into a ball. That proved a grave error. I was left with a knot of epic proportions. The mother of all knots. The knot that begat the knot.
Needless to say, I am thoroughly sleep deprived as I tried to wade through this meddlesome knot without resorting to cutting and slashing. My poor beautiful yarn. It was such an illusion. Now it's a huge evil knot. And if one thinks that knots are ornery in worsted weight, try lace. Oh, my concept of knot is reborn.
(Behold the little yarn-roach I made with the unsalvageable knot remnants.)
I don't have a yarn winder and I have 1,760 yards of yarn to wind. I will retreat unto my day sobbing softly.
Monday, August 14, 2006
My mother is a knitgimmie. That is, she wants every single thing she sees me working on for herself, places additional orders for other people and requests things that I am not working on. This renders my desire to knit her anything well into the negative range. For Mother's Day 2006 I was going to make her a pillow and so goes the Green Pillow saga.
I was at a local yarn store and dove into the sale yarns that included many novelty yarns. My parent's living room is green and full of decorating calamities so I thought that a multi-textured, multi-green pillow would blend in nicely. I had no pillow concept in mind. Certainly, the yarn would fuse together artfully. Since I am yarncheap I wasn't about to buy enough novelty yarn for both sides of the pillow. The yarn was a mere 30% off. So I couldn't begin the pillow since I lacked the foundational yarn.
Some time later as I was being a man-of-the-people at Wal Mart, I bumped into light green polyblend (and thus flammable) yarn. At $3 a skein this yarn was perfect for the pillow. That is, until I tried to knit with it. Behold the swatch. Indeed, I am not the best knitter and would never create a perfect swatch, but this is poor quality even for me. Certain and often cheap yarns hamper the whole process. The swatch is a story in itself. The only reason this swatch exists is because I've ripped this pillow apart so many times that I forget how many stitches per inch I get and never know how many stitches to cast on.
I flipped through my stitches a day calendar to see what form the pillow back would take. Having recently completed a stockinette pillow back, I realized that I was actually bored by that much stockinette. Shocking! as I am quite lazy about knitting and variations seem too troublesome. I settled on a slip moss stick pattern that looked beautifully textured in the calendar. I could not keep track of it. Am I on row 2 or 3? I would invariably knit the wrong row as evidenced a couple of rows later. The ripping would begin. Eventually, I stuffed the whole thing in my closet and forgot about it.
The green pillow resurfaced due to my knitstipation. I flipped through my stiches a day calendar once again and settled on the bamboo stitch. Once again, this stitch job looked beautifully textured in the calendar, but not in my knitting. To be continued as work progresses. However, I do note that my 5 stitches per inch swatch currently seem to yield an 11 inch wide pillow back. I wanted a 14 inch pillow back. Stupid swatch! I'm going to keep going for a bit. This may be solved by a Cher facelift-style blocking job.
Eventually, I realised that no amount of medieval torture blocking would work. I was living a lie! I had to rip the pillow out. Again.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
After some flipping, I settled on a baseball game. No problem! I don't have to watch everything because I can listen to the plays as well. I can knit and watch and be happy. I was a bit hasty.
The White Sox were playing the Yankees and the game was tied. In the eighth inning the Yankees were up a run. My knitting started getting tighter at that point. The Sox tied it again in the ninth. The game went into extra innings. My knitting got tighter and tighter.
By the end of the game, when the Sox finally won, my knitting was clinging firmly to the needles like scratchy on acrylic. Because I was using cheap yarn I also gave myself yarn-burn in between my fingers.
So there I was with water-tight knitting and yarn-burn on a supposedly relaxing evening. At least they won. Who knows what my knitting would've looked like otherwise?
Thursday, August 03, 2006
Some time ago I bought cheap yarn so that I might make baby blocks for another baby that's probably 2 or 3 by now and still has no blocks. I decided to go ahead and make these blocks for the missed-the-shower baby. I think I have 2 months left.
I turned to the trusty stitch a day calendar for inspiration. Once again, the picture looks nothing like my square. While not approximating the honeycomb it's supposed to be, the square looks interesting anyway.
There is a dearth of foam blocks in the world. I had to use froogle to find some. I ended up on kitkraft.biz paying $1 per block. But I got what I wanted which were 3" square blocks. After having gone into the trouble of locating foam blocks, I spoke to a blocks guru and she said that they were a bad idea. The baby could smash and ruin the foam. She recommended some kind of squishy foam. What if the foam from my blocks leaks out to be ingested by the child? Maybe I should rethink this whole process. . .
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Yesterday the local SNB took another field trip to a yarn store featuring local bloggers. Mine was not featured. A lot of us wrote our blogs on our nametags, but nobody seemed to care/notice. Someday I will actually have an adoring public. Maybe.
This yarn store had two large roomfuls of yarn! There was considerable debate about whether to stock yarn by color or texture/size, but I agree with the color organization. When I'm yarn shopping, I have a project and colors in mind. I've been to yarn stores tearing up bins looking for the color I need. This helps the yarn store avoid customers like me who treat the bin like their shoe closet. Where is my black loafer/black mega chunky ball?
I left with 3 balls of Ull. Evidently Ull has a good reputation and maybe when I'm done turning this Ull into mittens, I'll be like the good knitters who tell you authoritatively about the Ull.
Our SNB was like the queen bees at church. We travel in packs. We arrive early, we stay late. The priest/yarn proprietress has removed his cassock, has his arms crossed rocking back and forth waiting to get lunch as he politely listens to the ladies blabbering about next month's flowers. Yes, our SNB discussed each ball of yarn in our baskets. One of us would check out and another would disappear into the bowels of yarn.
Finally we made it home with generous gift bags from the yarn store. I call my new stash "Rainy Spring Day". It's not speaking to me yet. I'm not sure what it'll become. Our fearless leader won a big raffle and we contemplated mugging her on the way home, but the South Side has enough of a reputation without adding yarn theft to the police blotter.
Once in a while an SNB will be joined by a knitter. You get to know her and her projects then poof! She disappears. Every now and then your club will say, "Remember that one person who was knitting the green laptop cozy?" Of course, none of you will remember her name either. Then you'll say, "I wonder what happened to her?" You'll move on with your life and knit another row.
So what happened to me was that I used a forwarding address to join the SNB group so I couldn't log in to send a message and tell them that I'd moved. I felt bad, but I was bested by technology.
Luckily I was reunited with one of these fine ladies so that I could recount the tragic tale. Maybe some day she'll return to the group and say, "Remember that weird girl who knit garter stitch triangles for shawls? She's still around." Everyone will slurp on their smoothie and knit along. But I got closure and I'm no longer one of those people.