Day 1

This week I have been sorting through the various storage containers in my craft room.  My stash has gotten to the point where it has spilled out of my charming yarn cabinet and is now inhabiting the dreaded plastic tote box.  This is where I have decided to put larger quantities of yarn for long term storage.  I also have a box filled with hibernating works-in-progress.  This is where I found my Hemlock Ring Blanket, a granny square crochet blanket, Show-Off Stranded socks, Coraline, and  Lace Ribbon Scarf.

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My first thought was to rip the acrylic yarn out of the crochet blanket and donate it.  But then as I held it up I realized that it was pretty far along.  So far along, in fact, that it is practically a baby blanket already.  For the past several days I have been a crochet-machine, hooking and looping my way to a (nearly) finished blanket.  More on that later…

For now I want to concentrate on the Frog It or Finish It attitude with which I attacked my works in progress.  Here everything is laid out for inspection.  Big Martha was positively bored by the entire process.

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In the end, I decided to frog Coraline.  She and I just never really hit it off.  When I looked at our relationship realistically, I realized we would never be together as knitter and finished object.  2 1/2 balls of yarn (and knitting) riiiiipped straight from the sweater onto the ball winder.  Very satisfying.

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Then came the Lace Ribbon scarf.  I started this last winter, and while I was enjoying the way the yarn and pattern were working together, I just don’t feel like picking it up any time soon.  Besides, it had already been pillaged for the needles and was on a  stitch holder.  So easy to riiiiiip out!

My Show-Off Stranded socks are still in the waiting room.  Yesterday I wasn’t able to take the plunge and rip them out, thinking that I would somehow feel motivated to finish them this month as part of Socktoberfest.  Of course, I’ve been thinking they’d magically get finished since June and that hasn’t happened.  I give them another week or so before deciding their fate.

And then there’s my Hemlock Ring blanket.  The two of us got off to a really good start last spring and flew through the center and first 46 rows of feather and fan.  Then at some point, the stitch count got off and things weren’t lining up correctly.  I’ve been reassured that feather and fan doesn’t always look like it’s lining up with the previous rows until later, but still something is off.  The two of us need to sit down, do some counting and stitch marker arranging, and see if we can work things out.  This is another project that  will likely become a baby blanket in the interest of clearing the decks quickly.  I think a knitter’s babe is truly worthy of a Malabrigo blanket, don’t you?

All this ripping, finishing, and rearranging has me feeling like I have refreshed my knitting somewhat.  Which leads me to believing I need to cast on more projects!  It’s a cycle I have come to accept, one that I enjoy very much.  So while I’m trying to finish up some crochet today, my mind is really daydreaming about knitting this shawl and these socks.  What projects are you dreaming about while you work on something else?

Slow and Steady

As it happens, avoiding knitting the Coraline sweater has been good for my productivity!

This weekend I cast-on and finished one small project, and rescued a long-languishing work in progress from the pile and finished it too.

To be fair, I did take Coraline along to a cookout where she got to be with other knitting.

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Then I ignored her for the rest of the weekend!  As some of you suggested, a time-out for knitting can be a worthwhile exercise.  We both got some time apart to think about what we’d done, and in the end came back together amicably.  I have decided not to rip her out, favoring instead the “slow and steady wins the race” approach.  I will knit steadily on this sweater, when I feel like it, and not worry when my attentions inevitably stray to other projects.

Yesterday I pulled out a project that I started back in May with the intention of making it as a gift for an expectant friend.  The pattern is Tiny Shoes, another pattern from Ysolda Teague.  They are precious, fiddly, and somewhat quick to knit.  Who knows why, after knitting the first bootie successfully, it took me 3 months to knit the second?

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Sadly, one bootie turned out as expected: tiny, perky, and positively perfect.  The other one is more like the ugly step-sister of the first: loose, lopsided, and much larger.  A cute pair of booties this is not.

Sigh.

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On right: offensive bootie

So now I have to ask myself: is this a forlorn finished object, with one bootie destined for the compost pile, the other to dangle from my rear-view mirror as a reminder of what could have been?  Or should I wait another 3 months and knit a third bootie, hoping it will be of the tiny and perfect variety?  Either way, I’m lacking a knit gift for my friend, and if I’m honest I never want to knit this pattern again.

Coraline’s looking pretty appealing right about now.

Hesitation.

I’m feeling a certain amount of hesitation about my Coraline sweater.

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There are plenty of things I like about the sweater, and a few things that are causing me to rethink my commitment.  The pattern starts out with a provisional cast-on and turned hem, which I decided to modify into garter stitch.  My foggy brain can only handle so much right now, and maneuvering a crochet hook around my knitting needles wasn’t something I was up for.  So I knit the garter border and really like how it turned out.  You can never have enough garter stitch in your life, I think!

Then I went up a needle size to 4s and have been working on the stockinette for the body.  The interesting detail here is that it has an i-cord edging which requires that you slip the first 3 stitches of every row.  It looks nice on the front, but it’s not quite coming together on the back like I had imagined.  Can you see the floats?

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Then there’s the issue of this being a DK weight yarn on size 4 needles.  It feels like it will be 2020 before I get this sweater done and it’s only been a week! I’ve already knit an entire ball of yarn (that’s 144 yards) and feel like I don’t have much to show for it.  I only bought 10 balls altogether, and even thought that’s 1,440 yards I’m worried about running out of yarn!

So, I cast on a baby project in kitchen cotton to take my mind off these worries, hoping that things would become clear if I gave Coraline a couple of days off.  Thing is, I’m just not sure yet.  Sigh…