Saturday, March 24, 2007

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

The good: my buttons. Aren't they beautiful? Now I just need to figure out how to do buttonholes. Sorry the picture's not sharper; it's a gray day and I'm a camera nincompoop.

I went to the Village Yarn Store with Auden (who is now at the age where she is happy to sit looking at books at the front of the store while I shop) and was immediately overwhelmed all their wonderful choices. But as there was a group of knitters there ready and willing to help, I laid out my sweater so we could choose.

Hmmm. Strange. Note the front and back armholes on the left side of the picture do. not. line up.

Must have been the way I blocked it, right? Hadn't I just seconds earlier blithely (and yet with a hint of the pride that we all know what THAT goeth before) explained how I had meticulously and compulsively counted all my rows, instead of just measuring?

Yes. Well. Apparently I would have been better off with a little more measuring. Here's where I need one of those Joe Madden Monday Night Football markers that the cool bloggers have, but note the number of cables on the far left, versus the number on the far right:

Nope, not the same. It's a full cable short. And no amount of counting or recounting (or blocking) could make them the same.

This is how big the difference in length is:

(The other side is just fine, thank you very much.)

This is a whopper of a mistake. And it is so far back, so deep down, that fixing it would require ripping out almost half of the sweater. Thank God I was at the yarn store when this was discovered, or I might have impaled myself on my knitting needles.

But I was at the yarn store, and Yarn Store Lady #1 said she would not rip it all out, but she thought I could knit a few rows at the armhole to bring it up to match the other. Yarn Store Lady #2, to whom Yarn Store Lady #1 deferred, was even more reassuring: she says I can just make the front and back match when I seam them up, then make it look right in blocking.

Unbelievable, really. I was so obsessed with counting rows that I must have forgotten to measure the damn thing. (And didn't notice the difference when I picked up my button band stitches, either.) Well, I guess it's a learning experience. I may go over to the "knit both fronts/sleeves/socks/etc. at once" camp in future.

I am putting my faith in Yarn Store Lady #2. And praying that it won't look terrible.

Heed my careless ways, fellow knitters!

Back to buttonholes ...

Friday, March 23, 2007

One Button Band and a Sunny Day

A beautiful sunny day ... I couldn't resist a picture. Just one button band (with buttonholes) and seaming left to go. I'm cruising! I washed, I blocked, I kitchenered the hood (how I love the kitchenered hood) – I've even sewn all my ends in. Now I just need buttons. Maybe tomorrow I can lure the children to the Village Yarn Shop to find me some buttons.

This is my first button band, so of course I learned some things as I went along. Like, of course you want to start and end picking up stitches at the very very tippy ends, 'cause you don't want your button band shorter than your sweater. And that picking up 3 stitches every 4 rows thing -- that would have been a good thing to have looked up before starting the button band. And, maybe I don't need to be a slave to the stitch number in the pattern, especially if I lengthened the body of the sweater.

But actually I think it looks pretty good. I'm so excited about finishing this sweater!

Just in time for spring. :)

Kathy I'm thinking of you ...

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Lots More Progress

I'm getting somewhere -- everything's done except the top of the second sleeve, which I'll finish tonight. Now I need to make a hood decision: I think I want to kitchener instead of seaming it, but the question is whether that means I need to do the ribbing/button band all in one piece or whether I could do the two separate pieces, THEN kitchener the hood and seam the ribbing at the top of the hood. Would that look weird? I don't know why I am so intimidated by doing the ribbing/button band all in one piece. It just looks loooooooong.

Thanks to everyone who was so nice about my sock; I got into a rut and didn't keep up with answering. I wish Blogger had an option for leaving your email address; that would facilitate conversation! I have been hanging out with some friends on LiveJournal, and it is so much more conversational over there. Oh well!

It's cold and snowy outside, good for knitting. When it warmed up into the 60s last week I was afraid it would be next year before I wore my hoodie. I'd better get going!

Friday, March 02, 2007

Embossed Leaf #1

I know I should probably wait until I have a PAIR of socks to show this, but who knows when I will get to the other one. And I love this one so much! I love the yarn – love love LOVE it and its tiny gorgeous shimmery variations – and I love the practically perfect pattern. The star toe is very very comfortable. I'd still like to make the cast on a little stretchier on the second one – should I just go up another needle size?

Pattern: Embossed Leaves Socks, IK Winter 2005
Yarn: Lorna's Laces Nearly Solid, Blackberry. Less than 1 skein per sock.
Needles: Susan Bates #2 dpns (#3 for the cast on and first two rows)
Modifications: I didn't do the called for cast on, because I couldn't figure it out. I was also disturbed to read here (scroll down to the March 10 post) that it isn't the cast on actually used by the sock designer. And I kitchenered the toe, because just pulling the stitches together, drawstring-style, as the pattern called for, just seemed wrong.