Monday, November 21, 2005

Not Dead Yet

I'm still here! I have been sick a little, busy a little, reading a little, working a little, which all added up to less time knitting and entertaining myself in front of a computer.

Part of reading that did was reading about sweater design. I usually like to think of myself as a creative type, but in reality, I'm an analytical type who sometimes flashes a bit of creativity. So I can't just sketch my sweater design and start knitting. Noooo . . . I have to gather information (research), organize the information (copious notes), collect data (endless swatching, measuring of swatches, measuring me, measuring existing sweaters), and analyze the data based on information gathered (lots of calculations). But all that work was necessary to make me feel comfortable casing on for the back:

Furry Cat, Furry Knitting

That's the bottom part of the back. Feel free to say that it doesn't look like anything. (On the other hand, this photo looks like furry mountains.) It is a nice lace pattern once it's all stretched out, but I couldn't talk Scout into holding the knitting in place. I got over my anxiety about starting my sweater by reminding myself (as Silvia reminded me) that I can always rip out the knitting if it isn't working out. Or at least that's what I told myself until tried casting on.

I started doing the twisted German cast-on because I heard that it was nice and stretchy. I cast on about half the stitches and realized that I had left a tail that was MUCH too long. So, I pulled it out and started over. Halfway through my second attempt of casting on, the tail end of the yarn broke. It just came off in my hand! Of course, I had to pull out the stitches again because the tail was now way too short. And the yarn broke again! And AGAIN! I just sat there staring at the little pieces of yarn in my hands. I hadn't abused the yarn or pulled on it harder than normal. In fact, after it broke the first time, I was more gentle when pulling out the stitches.

Is this yarn so fragile that it won't stand up to a single frogging attempt? Or was the end of that ball just particularly fragile? I don't know and I don't plan to find out. I guess if I finish this sweater and I don't like it for some reason, I'll suck it up and wear it proudly for years. If I rip it out and the yarns falls apart, it will just be an expensive pile of garbage.

Purple!I received three, hopefully knot-free balls of Karaoke from SWTC. They also sent along two balls of their new yarn Twize in a pretty proud purple. It is 100% bamboo and feels very soft. I think this will turn into some baby item.

I didn't end up teaching this past weekend. The LYS owner didn't manage to advertise her classes at all so no one has signed up for classes yet.


GretchenX said...

Scout (and the sweater in progress) looks lovely! Brutus wants me to pass on that HE thinks that SHE is the pretties kitty-girl in the whole WORLD!!! (emphasis per Brutus' demand)

Good luck on the sweater - I'm liking the stitch pattern!!!

Agnes said...

Eager to see how your design turns out. What yarn are you using? It would really piss me off if the yarn breaks like that!
Scout is soooo lovely!

amylovie said...

I hope you are feeling better!

What yarn did you use? I can't believe it broke? Your sweater looks fantastic so far. Is is something you are going to submit, or is it just for yourself?

No advertising?? Hmmm....

Whit said...

I recently had the same yarn-breaking issues. Although I love the end result - I will NEVER use that brand again for a sweater. It broke off for no reason as I was knitting - just a few times in the course of the sweater, but enough to make me CRAZY.

Jennifer said...

The back of your sweater looks very promising! I can't wait to see what you're cooking up.

Cordelia said...

Hee hee -- wool mountains.

Ditto to amylovie -- I hope you're feeling better!

And research is good! I don't think fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants is any more creative than what you've done. You had an idea and then you planned it out. It's just a difference in execution, not inspiration.

Joanna said...

The back of your sweater looks fabulous so far! I'm also about to start my first self-designed "real" sweater (as opposed to a tanktop) but it's mostly stockinette, which made the planning pretty easy. I can't wait to see how yours turns out.