Sunday, February 26, 2006

Medal denied

There wasn't enough yarn. I'm within a few rows of being finished, though, so I still consider it a success. I tried the sweater on and it is going to fit well and look great when it's done, which makes me very happy. I'm just not letting myself think about how shiny and pretty the gold medal would have looked on the sidebar over there.

So tomorrow I will call Patternworks in hopes of buying another skein in the same dye lot, and in the meantime I'm trying to figure out what is next. I'm actually down to one project at a time lately, which is fine with me. There'll be a new baby in the family in May, so I could make something for her, or I may start another LoTech Sweat--I made one a few years ago, before I fully understood the importance of gauge, so even though I love the design, I don't wear it much.

What I should do is take apart a sweater I designed and knit late last summer and early fall. I thought all my calculations were okay, but the set-in sleeves will just not set in correctly; they look puffy at the top, like those sweaters I wore in high school in the 80's. The rest of the sweater, a chestnut v-neck with mistake-stitch ribbing, looks pretty nice, but the sleeve problem ruins it for me.

I was sad to hear of Don Knotts' death. We are watching all our Andy Griffifth DVDs this afternoon as a tribute. My all-time favorite episode is the one where Barney wants to sing in the choir, and Andy and the choir director try everything to keep him from singing because he is so bad. And the one where Barney buys a motorcycle, and the one where he arrests the whole town, and every single one where he accidentally shoots his gun. He will be missed.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Cue the dramatic music

I decided to go for the gold and get this sweater finished by the time the flame is extinguished. However, as with many Olympians, my story is fraught with drama; will years and years of practice and mental preparation all go down the drain because of one small mistake? Will I fall on my….triple lutz? It’ll be an entirely mental game from now on, and I won’t know if I can pull it off until the end is almost in sight.

I don't think there's enough yarn.

Yeah. What a disappointment. It may work out okay, but it’ll be very, very close. However, if I can finish the sweater and have enough yarn, and it turns out beautifully in spite of it all, what a great story that’ll be for Bob Costas or Dick Buttons.

Here’s what I’ve got so far. I have no idea what I was thinking when I decided to do the first sleeve back and forth, because when I started the second, after a couple of rounds it went quite easily onto a 16” circular. It must have been cold-induced brain fog. So one sleeve will have a seam, and the other will not, but maybe I’ll be the only one who notices.

Wish me luck.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Go for the gold?

I joined the Knitting Olympics with the sole intention of making a good start on the Hourglass sweater, never expecting to actually complete it. However, if I really push, I might actually be able to finish! Here is the body up to the point where the sleeves will be attached.

Knitting this the second time was much less painful; by knitting every day I did, as expected, eliminate a lot of those ugly lines. There is one, however, that I didn’t spot until I’d knitted another three or four inches. After I finished the body, I wet it and blocked it a little and am waiting to see if that takes care of the problem. So far, so good.

I didn’t have a 12” circular needle for the sleeves, so I began the sleeves on dpns. After three inches or so of not really liking the resulting knitting (uneven between dpns, etc.), I frogged and decided to knit back and forth and seam up the sleeve when it’s completed. I don’t like seaming either, but it seemed the lesser of two evils in this case. I’m over halfway finished with the first sleeve, and since I am recuperating from a nasty cold, I have the opportunity to knit all afternoon and perhaps get this one done and the second one started.

In other news, last week I visited my grandfather, and while I was waiting for him to come out of the post office, I photographed this across the street. I was trying to find a little beauty in the midst of small-town squalor, and I think this works.