Friday, February 16, 2007

For Rachel, with Love

When we last saw Lotus, I had finished the body and had been lured away from all that stranding by SHINY RED! As soon as Shiny Red was finished (which was last week), I cast on for a Lotus sleeve. I was a little sad about it because I had just come to the realization that I couldn’t knit both sleeves at the same time. Oh sure, I could do that “two socks on two circulars” trick but I know that four needle tips and four balls of yarn plus the need to keep track of the colorwork pattern would have driven me to the insane asylum. So one at a time. Drat.

After I cast on and knit a couple of inches, I did what I seem to be doing a lot of with this sweater. I frogged. I started the sleeve doing the magic loop and it was just not a pretty sight. I couldn’t keep floats loose enough particularly when switching from one side of the loop to the other. And fiddling with the loops? UGH. So I started again. This time with double pointed needles (DPNs).

LotusSleeveStartThe DPNs made me happy until Rachel happened to mention somewhere in this mammoth post that her gauge on DPNs was a full stitch smaller than her gauge on circular needles. I fearfully stared at my sleeve. I didn’t want to touch it. I didn’t want to approach it with my Knit Chek®. Would there be more frogging? Would this be the first project that ever truly elicits tears from my eyes? The answer is: No, not yet.

If anything, my gauge is off by about 0.25 of a stitch over two inches. Changing needle sizes won’t help that. Plus it will block out, right? (This is what I’m telling myself, don’t spoil the illusion.)

But the use of DPNs was still going to cause me problems—soon the work wouldn’t fit on my needles. I have stubby little 6-inch DPNs because, for some reason, I thought I liked short DPNs. I knew this impending doom was fast approaching and I knew that I wanted to get the work on circulars as fast as possible. So I ordered some 12-inch circulars. Well, the 12-inch circs aren’t here yet. What’s a girl to do? Cast on for another project, of course.

For months now, Rachel has been hounding me to start Starsky. I’ve been threatening to knit it since the pattern came out, but it never seemed to make it to the top of my knitting line up. But Rachel just won’t get off my case about it. “Knit it! Knit Starksy!” she says. The wheres, whens, and hows of me starting the cardigan have been dominating my conversations with Rachel because she can’t seem to let go of this obsession. Rachel claims that she wants me to knit Starsky so that we can finally be “sweater twins,” but I suspect that she wants me to knit the sweater so that she can lord the fact that I’m “copying her” over me at any time.

Despite my worries about Rachel’s true motives, I decided that it was Starsky’s time. I grabbed my bag of discontinued *sniff* Berroco Pleasure, knit a swatch and cast on. That was Wednesday. By Thursday night I had finished the back and started the fronts.

Why am I showing you this and giving you a timetable of the events? Yesterday, in an email conversation, Rachel indicated that she was jealous that I knit half a Starsky back in one day. So, naturally, I had to finish the back by the end of the day. In other words, I wrote this post with the sole purpose of driving Rachel insane with jealousy over my knitting speed. I have to do something to get to Rachel now because once I’m finished knitting this sweater, I’m going to have to endure Rachel’s taunts until kingdom come. What are friends for?

14 comments:

Rachel said...

I...but I...how dare...I'd never...after everything I've...WAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

I don't know where to start. My motives were as pure as the driven slush...err, snow! Sweater twins? I sincerely loved the idea! You finishing a Starsky back in one day? I was respectfully impressed! Taunts? It never would have occurred to me.

I'm not sure now that my Starsky wants to be twins with your Starsky. I guess this puts an end to my daydream of coming to visit you in Texas this summer and the two of us traipsing around Houston wearing our matching wool sweaters. Instead I'm going to go home, wrap up in Starsky, sit in the dark and drink scotch right out of the bottle as I think about what could have been.

Mintyfresh said...

You keep up your hard work taunting Rachel, and I'll do my best to maintain the rivalry I apparently have with her SIL. (She's jealous of me, what can I say?) :)

Elizabeth said...

That's some seriously fast knitting there! Wow.

Don't fret too much about the gauge on the Lotus sleeve. It'll all be ok. Really.

Zonda said...

The Lotus sleeve is looking good! Wishing you the best with finishing it! Hoping the mail arrives soon!

That Starsky is going to look great! Lovely color!

Theresa said...

Laura, I'm getting a little worried that I won't be able to talk to you anymore, cause now I'm all intimidated by your AMAZING SPEED!

(Wow.)

Joanna said...

Oooh, I've had that problem before too, where I switched to dpns for the sleeves of a sweater knit in the round and my gauge tightened up. I blocked out part of the difference, and ignored the rest. :P (It was expensive mohair! I couldn't frog and I didn't have enough to start over!) I'm sure your .125 sts/in is fine.

And I'm totally swooning over your Starsky! Webs still has over 500 balls of Pleasure left, at $4.79/ball... it's a leathery brown color that I normally wouldn't look twice at, but for Pleasure... it's very tempting.

s t a c i said...

I knit Starsky in black, and the lighter color makes yours look dramatically different from mine! The banana leaf pattern is so quiet in black, and so pronouncd in yours. Hmm...I may need to make another...

(I made the black one for my sister, anyway. Maybe I need one, too.)

Jennifer said...

I wanna knit fast!!!! Starsky is looking fantabulous.

Rachel said...

I simply can't fathom why hasn't there been an outpouring of comments condemning your heartless treatment of a fellow knitter!!

Terby said...

Your speed is blowing me away.

Your competitiveness amuses the heck out of me, too. Because I can't relate at all. Oh no...

(must learn to knit faster.)

amylovie said...

I'm glad that you are going to make sweet Rachel happy!

Berroco Pleasure is one of the only yarns I've ever enjoyed knitting with from Berroco. Your sweater will be yummy.

Amy

Meredith said...

Wow, not only are you knitting the sweater fast, but it's not pink! Amazing. ;)

Batty said...

Your Starsky is wonderful! I love your color choice. You are incredibly fast.

Saltwater purls said...

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Now I want to make Starsky! Pleasure looks like a wonderful yarn to work with too....hmmm I see some stash diving is in order..