Wednesday, January 30, 2008


January 30, 2008
I insisted on using this one yarn for the trim, possibly against my teacher's will and as a result I am using 3 yarns. One of them is in two colors since there was not enough of one color left for me so technically 4 yarns. I was asked to switch from the 8mm needle to the 9mm because I am knitting too closely but I will go back to the 8mm and pretend that I am a loose knitter. I hate the 9mm.. I am such a conservative. I learned on the 8mm and nothing in the world will make me go to any other gauge. The pattern and color look very sketchy so far. I cannot say I love what I am doing but I am willing to fall in love with it at some point.

I am using Berroco Peruvia in 7115 gris claro and 7117 gris marengo , something called Lang Jawoll Cotton in some speckled gray, light gray, maroon and black and the one I am using for the trim Laines Du Nord Mantova in Purple Mauve Smoke Color #605.

January 31, 2008
I am going to record the instructions. For mystery gauge cast on 79 stitches, work in rib pattern K3 *P3, K4*, end with P3, K3 (OK I just had to count this for a full minute.. 7 * 10 = 70 + P3 and then K3+K3 = 79) for 2 inches then switch to stockinette for .. an unknown amount of inches soon to be revealed. I just looked on my work calendar and the 18th of February is a company holiday. Guess where I'll be ..
11:29 PM
Guess where I won't be.. she is on vacation that week. Anyways the sizes are 40-20.5-30 Chest, Armpit to wrist, neck to wrist so I am not sure why the back has to be 21.5? Mistake: Dropped the skinny yarn so undid 4 stitches, thought I was so great.. wound up unraveling 4 rows and putting all the loops on backwards. By the way I did the above a lot tonight for various reasons, holes too big, dropped skinny yarn, etc.. and every time the loops went on backwards. We really should have picked a better color. I am afraid the recipient will not like this one.
I think I am doing OK on the 8mm. This is the skinniest yarn I have ever worked with. I should have made my dad's sweater out of this.

February 1, 2008
Wow it's February. I am trying to think of design. I am thinking maybe I want to do something to the sleeve like rib 1/4 up or use the trim or trim the shoulder to some part above the elbow on both or do one and then do the below the elbow on the other. I have not even started thinking about the body. Too overwhelmed. I am sure the teacher will come up with something but I would like to come up with something. I want to learn how to come up with things.

I like the idea of lines or cables one on each side as seen here ..
I like how the buttons are separated by multiple line on each side..

Here I like the exaggerated buttonhole section and the lines that go around on the bottom and the top. I think they are garter alternating with something times three..
9:16 PM This is something I just cannot seem to get .. how to put back the stitches on the needle after I rip. This is what I do.. rip and try to put back the stitches as is and end up dropping some of them. Then I do what the instructor has shown me.. stop a row before and then disassemble the stitches as you put them back on the needle, except I always put them on backwards. Then I have to turn around each one by one as I knit them and I end up splitting them which does not look good. So now what I do is put them back on, then put them on another needle as I turn them around and then have to put them back on the original needle so I can knit them.. in this case all 79 of them. I should really ask her again how to do it. She said you have to go from the back but which back? The knit back, the purl back.. the wrong side of the piece.. Why is my font different?!! I hate freeware.
Off the subject: ..who's only beautiful in repose or in retrospect.. This is taken out of a movie review from the Boston Globe. Something to think about .. Am I ever going to stop knitting?

February 2, 2008
Things I want to know:
How to fix mistakes without using the crochet hook?
How to put stitches back on the needles forward?
How does one determine stitch count from the measurements?

3:14 PM
I never thought I'd run into this problem.. size. So far I had so much trouble with the pattern I did even have room for foreseeing other rather obvious problems .. and now when I am a partial pro (only in my mind) I am able to get to this one. The sweater back is 14 1/2 per my instructor and my mom wants it 17. Maybe I can talk her into 16.. I feel like I am more concerned about how the sweater will look then if the person will be happy with it. Not a good idea. Now we run into the lack of yarn problem which we had to begin with and it's now increased. I only have 3 of one color which is not enough.

4:02 PM
I am not happy right now. I am not sure what to do about the length. The instructor was non-supportive as usual.. well no sometimes she is supportive. She is like supportive in an emergency. I called her and she said to do what my mother wants. What about fashion, style, appearance.. why is knitting so emotional. I thought I said this was going to be a technical blog. By the way this sweater is non-photogenic and the yarn is non-photogenic also.

6:30 PM
How to count rows. I have seen it before but never really did it. You count the parallel bars in between braids. She actually said braids today .. not cables. I was a momentary influence.
For mystery gauge on 6 mm cast on 79 stitches..
make sure the work is 20 1/2 inches when stretched but not too much
work in rib pattern K3 *P3, K4*, end with P3, K3 for 3 inches
Switch to 8mm and work in stockinette and work until 14 1/2
Bind off 4 stitches at the beginning of next 2 rows
Decrease 1 stitch at each side* EOR 5 times by K1, Sl1, K1, PSSO on right and K2tog, K1 on left

Cast on 86 stitches.. I wrote her 86 but did 79. No comment .. except for the one I got from the knitting lady about my reading ability when it comes to following instructions. I have no instructions on the armhole but I had to shape the armholes by decreasing until they measured 5 1/2 inches. Then I had to shape the neck. I don't remember how I did that. I just remember that I screwed up. I put the middle on a stitch holder (15) and then decreased every other row 5 times it says on the instructions but then it was not enough so I just knitted some more rows and then joined the shoulders and she picked up stitches for the colar.

On 8mm cast on 20 sts
Work in garter for 3 1/2 inches
Increase evenly to 38 sts .. increase is the middle increase where you pick up the year in between the stitches
Work in pattern in stockinette increasing 1 st each side every 1 1/2 inches 8 times to total 54 sts
When sleeve measures 17 inches bind of 4 sts at the beginning of next 2 rows
Bind off 1 sts at the beginning of every row until sleeve cap measures 4 inches
We ended up with 62 stitches instead of 54.
Then you have to decrease. I was at 34 stitches from 62 so I had to decrease 3 in the beginning of the next 2 rows, then 4 then 5 and then bind of the remaining 10.

I don't know. I think I had to decrease from the inside on both sides by one but then it was not long enough so I just knitted up. The mid-section I left on a stitch holder. Then she picked up the stitches with the bubbly yarn and left a piece that was hanging. I should ask her how she did the hanging piece.

* What I forgot:
You bind off on the sleeves and decrease on the front .. not the same for both

March 23, 2008
Here we are again. Somehow I never end up with full instructions. Sometimes I feel like it's good that I do not have them because then I will have to stop going to the store.

8:52 PM
I just got the above decrease for the sleeve. I got all of her instructions.. amazing. Well they are easy but they were not when I started. I just got confused on sleeve instructions but then I was like.. I got it. I need to finish this sweater before I forget how to sew.. I feel like I need to come on Tuesday for the sleeves .. but I have to do them 1st.

9:11 PM
My design ideas above are boring.. and they are someone else's designs on top of that.

February 3rd, 2008
I went shopping today and bought a sweater. Something I can knit myself a lot better. Not sure why. It's gray.. cute but the binding off looks defective. I am supposed to knit but do not feel like making a ball out of loose yarn .. I am definitely not coming on Tuesday for the sleeves.

February 7th, 2008
I have not done any knitting all week. I have tried to start the sleeves and undid them several times. I cannot figure out how to knit with the yarn. I also ruined it a little bit but I am really good at undoing without getting it all tangled since I have done it over and over. I am not even sure I can go on Saturday because I have accomplished nothing. The instructor will be disappointed.

February 8th, 2008
I think I figured out the yarn but I screwed up one of the cuffs so now I have to knit it on it's own which is not recommended by me.

February 12, 2008
I am done with the front and almost done with the sleeves. I have to wait 2 weeks until the instructor comes back from vacation to get the instructions to the front. I was going to go see her on Tuesday but I got sick. I do not have anymore yarn and I suspect neither does the instructor. It's kind of disturbing and fun at the same time because that means we'll have to improvise for the front as far as yarn is concerned. The cuffs took me forever. I think I did them over 7-8-9 times and may have damaged the yarn in the process. I have only seen the instructor twice during the entire process and did mostly everything on my own. Hopefully the back is not too long and the sleeves not too short.
10:58 PM
I over-knitted .. feel sick ..

February 13, 2008
If I hear about Valentine's day on the news one more time I will sent a complaint letter to the network. I still remember last year when I saw on the table in the restaurant this single rose that the man has given a woman with very long straight blond hair. It was red with a green piece of yarn tied in a bow about 1/3 of the way going up the thorny stem. It was a different color green then the stem.. almost clashing. I did not knit anything then. I am back to being annoyed with February 14th although it's just like any other winter day. My milk says "sell by the 14th" which is cute. I never know what that means. If you can no longer keep it in the Whole Foods refrigerator why is it that you can keep it in your personal refrigerator. Now you are confused as to how long it can remain there without consequences. There is no "throw out by the ..." or "consume by the ..." label.
I finished the sleeves and started on the front. I don't have any questions and feel like if I had yarn I'd try my own design rather then wait 2 full weeks but I don't. Weird. I used to have so many questions. Right now I just have one.. how do you match the measurements of the person to your gauge. I feel like the instructor will never tell me. It's one of those secrets she referred to when she said "When you know this you can buy the business.. "
I forgot to mention I cannot count to 79.. I can only do 78. I was supposed to cast on 79 and did 78. The 2nd time I casted on without counting and then counted and I had 78 so I did one more and then still had 78. I will resume tomorrow. Counting is the worst. I get bored just at the thought of it. I cannot imagine if I ever had to knit something really wide.. I'd never get started. I'd be casting on for eternity .. I'd love to be in charge of the instructor's knitting business for one day. There is like no limit to the mistakes I'd make. Everyone would have the wrong size sweater with incorrect cast on stitches. All I know is how to fix stockinette errors on uncomplicated yarn. For example Laines Du Nord I am using for this sweater (not yet pictured) every time I saw something that looked like it may have been a mistake I undid the whole piece and started over. There still maybe mistakes in it. She never saw it and I have no idea. If there is a dropped stitch in there you cannot even tell because the yarn does not come apart easily. That would be sad. I'd have to undo the entire sleeve to fix it and the increase of the 39 instead of 38. That was one increase let me tell you. I don't know what I was doing in there at all. I just pulled at anything that would move and increased that. In recap I am done with back and sleeves on the 13th and I am on hold until the 26th.
11:40 PM
I just realized that I can count to 79. That was not the problem. I was supposed to do K3, P4 and I did K4, P4 so I ended up with 72 and then I had 5 left instead of 6.. twice!!

February 14th, 2008
I am home sick. Very exciting.
9:17 PM
Today I learned how to pick up stitches without using the crochet hook. I could not do it yesterday but today I figured it out. As I went through the movement I was sort of remembering the movement the teacher does when she does not use the crochet hook. I could not figure it out before and it's so simple. I think what confused me was that the yarn I had to knit with was not straight but in a loop instead. I also understood that I can knit the front identical to the back because the cable is 4 loops and the edge was 3 and 3 which leaves a loop on each side for sewing and 2+2=4. Up until now I did the front different from the back and attempted to do the same thing today but then "realized" that this sweater was different. I can only imagine the teacher's reaction when I show up with the front starting with a purl instead of a knit. She'd be like "How did you think to do this?" Sometimes I feel like my mind is twisted. That would mean that a cable on each side would be 2 loops instead of 4. That would make the sweater look silly like someone did not know what they were doing or had a twisted mind. I feel like I am at a plateau. I understand all the instructions but I cannot do anything on my own. I cannot even figure out pattern instructions that I got off the internet or more like don't feel like reading them. I want to just do things out of my head but there is nothing there quite yet.

February 15, 2008
Well February 14th was uneventful. I am not knitting at all. I cannot wait for the instructor to get back from vacation. I miss instructions. My mom came by in the hat.. so cute!

February 27th, 2008
Guess who is back. "Even if you don't remember your hands will!" in response to my "I think I forgot what to do.. " Apparently this is a perfect hobby for when one is afflicted with Alzheimer's. Just like piano.. but I am not as good at that. I started the front design. I learned how to use 2 yearns at the same time today.. gray and dark gray. She was not kidding when she said she was going to work light gray into the design. I love how she just does whatever and I think whatever she does is great. I did manage to join the 2nd and remove the 1st by cutting it off but it was fine form then on. You put the new one over the old one and pull both. The instructor was telling me what to do row by row when I was at her house so now I don't know how to continue since she is not here. She is really funny. Who does that. It rained all afternoon and evening and now the rain has stopped. Everything is very still. 1:03 AM.

March 1st, 2008
The knitting store was closed today. There was a huge sign on the store which began 'We regret to inform you.. ' For a brief moment I thought something terrible had happened but turns out the instructor is sick.

March 2nd, 2008
Well it's a repeat of the vacation. I am not knitting for another week. I just read a comic strip that had superman saying that knitting is wonderful tonic for the nerves. Of course I had to look up tonic. Apparently it's not only a carbonated drink but: something that lifts the spirits or makes somebody feel better generally. Interesting. I like validation. I also like one word sentences or suffer from poor punctuation either way you want to look at it. I kind of hope the knitting person is feeling better .. not because of me but just because it's not fun to be sick. Maybe I should leave her a message just like that. Project#5 is taking a very long time. Wonder if it's my last collaboration with the teacher .. we'll see. Time will tell as they say or as I have just said.

March 22, 2008
I am almost done with the sweater but I am not going to make it to my mom's birthday. Maybe I can give it to her the weekend after. Teacher said to flip over the stitch holder so when it opens the stitches will not fall off although the stitch holder is very sturdy and do not look like it plans on opening anytime soon. I did a new decrease on the color but only on one side. I think I learned it a few month earlier but did not quite understand what I was doing at the time. I don't like it. One side looks different from the other because of it. I was also really upset because of the asymmetrical triangle but the teacher said she liked it with like this really nice tone in her voice so I guess I like it also. Spring is in the air.. for real. I think the 1st day was like yesterday or Thursday. I am listening to an Alla Pugacheva song. I think the only one she made last year. I am going to miss her .. I miss her already and have been missing her since she got old, started looking and acting ridiculous and stopped singing.

March 23, 2008
I left the knitting lady a message. I feel like I should start sewing and I would if it was not for those crazy sleeve cuffs. There are too many broken yarn strings in the sweater because of all the tangles. I feel like each one is a chance for it to fall apart while washing. The knitting lady is not fond of broken yarn either but she never quite says why. I don't really get that about her. She has a lot of "some things are better left unsaid" things but I do not get the severity behind it.
I finally know how to put the stitches back on. There is a difference between purl and knit. Knit you go into the back of the braid but purl you have to go from the top inside the loop and it's more complicated. I am not afraid to unravel decreased parts but the above only applies to easy yarn. I can do nothing on
Laines Du Nord Mantova in Purple Mauve Smoke Color #605. With that it's like I travel in time back to September 2007 to the 1st class. By the way "some things are better left unsaid" are from the song "Why" by Annie Lennox. I cannot remember if I said already that I messed up the design. I took some photos today and you can see it very clearly. Let's see .. should I be upset about that or the crappy job I did the edge of the sleeves or the light gray yarn I managed to tangle even though it was not attached to anything or the fact that I need another day off if I want to make the birthday.
I learned a new thing on Saturday from Heidi's single digit age granddaughter. Horses are measured in hands. A hand is 4 inches and the horse is measured from the ground up to the highest point on her back.

12:39 AM
I think I figured out what I like about all this. It's like I am a designer pretend. That's what's fun.

March 25, 2008
What I did on this sweater is called Itarsia. It's pronounced how it's spelled with the S. It's
a method of knitting with two or more colored yarns in which the pattern can be seen from both sides of the finished piece. I accidentally found it in my vogue knitting book while looking for finishing illustrations. I cannot sew. I just do not get it. I feel like I get everything else so far but this. It's like when I could not figure out how to pick up stitches. She said to use Primary yarn to sew. It made me think of physicians. I feel like I should thread something along the sewing path so I do not deviate from it but I cannot even figure out where the path is. Sad today. It was Masha's Birthday today. I am going to make her something. I hope she can come in to be measured. I cannot measure or sew or design. My 3 limitations in the knitting world.

March 26th, 2008
I am sewing. I have undone everything and more then once but I am doing well. I just cannot get the bottom edge even no matter what I try. Tomorrow I am going to try and hold it to the light and mark it. I am doing what she told me .. sewing a few, pulling the thread (so you know you are doing it right) and then stretching it out. I cannot rem exactly how she stretched it vertical or horizontal. I think it was vertical. Starting is the hardest part.

March 29, 2008
Some notes on sewing for a regular sweater with capped sleeves.
Start with sides .. then complete the sleeves and then sew on the sleeves
Sides: go underneath 1 bar although I swear she said 2 before.
Sleeves and body: under one part of the braid on sleeve and under 1 bar on the body
Pin the sleeve to the shoulder not where the string hangs but someplace else .. don't get this part
Cuffs: go in one side and then in another side from top
I have to weave in all this crap tomorrow. I think I will just sit there and do it. I need a class in it but I am sure she will be all annoyed if I bother her with it.

March 30th, 2008
I am done. It does not fit my mom 100% so I am sad. I really wanted it to be perfect fit and otherwise. I am not going to undo it. Or maybe I will. I don't know yet. Right now I feel like that is a huge impossibility. I brought Tatyana in and she wanted some extinct yarn and the teacher was just OK with her. I was hoping she'd be a little nicer. I don't know what her problem is sometimes. She made me take this brownish yarn I did not want to take and then made me go get it from the car when I said Tatyana did not want it. How hard is it for her to be human? Makes me sad. I did spend a good hour and something weaving in loose ends. I took my time. At some point she was like 'did you want to give me that?' She was referring to my pile of loose end cuts. I don't care anymore. I can interrupt and be ignored and not feel bad and not give up. Now if I could only apply it to my life outside of knitting.

March 31st, 2008
Some notes on sewing on buttons. You can stick the needle inside the double loop when you come out and this way the threat is hooked onto the knitting. She used this technique for something else on Saturday but I cannot remember what. What was it?

10:29 PM
I remembered what the loop was for. When she made me sew the 1st half of the cuffs I had to thread the yearn and then go inside the loop .. I think.

1 comment:

Ira said...

When I saw your knitting,
"u menya potekli slunki", this is so neat and beautiful.