e_moon60 (e_moon60) wrote,

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Tending to My Knitting

Since I started knitting again (whenever that was...April?)  this is what I've accomplished: 

From front to back, Project #1 (a blanket, in progress), Project #2 (a scarf, ready to be cast off and have fringe added), and Project #3,  (blanket, probably with the addition of solid color squares or strips to go with the stripey ones.)

Project #1 is folded under because I'm not at the end of a row and couldn't lay it out flat.  It's  roughly 40 inches wide, 180 stitches, with a 20 stitch border on either side and four 35 stitch divisions inside .   It has suffered the most mistakes from my re-learning attempts and I made another one last night, knitting in a friend's house in inadequate light while listening to a conversation.  Listening too much, in fact.  I chose to make it wide, so that in relearning I'd have long rows on which to regain rhythm.  That worked.  But it's a big project (it's supposed to end up in the range of 48 inches long) and the long rows make it impractical to work on when I have very little time.  It's also on size 7 needles and that makes it slower going than #2 and #3, just for that reason alone.   It's on a 40 inch cable and would like to crawl off the ends.   Note to self: do big finished-size projects on larger needles and a cable at least six inches longer than the project is wide, if possible..   However, I've taken it on long trips and made progress that way.   It's also useful for long waiting periods at the doctor's office or hospital--if you know it's going to be an interval long enough to do a row or two.

#1 has a lot of mistakes, only some of which were corrected by ripping out and redoing.  In anything but perfect lighting and silence I have trouble ripping out and capturing the next row of stitches.   So some mistakes became design features, and some were cobbled back into the whole as best I could.  I love the color of this thing, but I'm using multi-colored wood needle tips (Knit-Picks) and the colors are close enough together that in anything but perfect lighting I can miss a stitch and not see that it's not "made."  #1 has a design of sorts (making it up...) with should've-been-squares but turned out rectangles of stockinette or stockinette with garter stitch stripes alternating with garter stitch and a garter stitch border.   The first set of stockinette are done; I'm on the next set, checkerboarded to the first.

Project #2 has 30 stitch rows and is a useful project for taking into situations where I may not have time to finish a long row.  It's on a 24 inch cable and readily stays put in the middle of the cable if I cross the needle points.  I've had fun with it; I find the colors a bit easier to see than #1's --but part of that was using acrylic needles, and one size larger than those of #1.   Ripping out a row was also easier, though still nerve-wracking.

Project #3 was chosen to force myself to learn how to cast off.   I tried doing it my mother's way, which I did not remember as clearly as I'd hoped, and then went online (LOVE the variety of YouTube videos!!)   My mother cast off with a crochet hook mostly, but I decided to learn the knit cast-off.    Figured that having to do it every square would cement it in my mind, the same way the long rows of Project #1 re-fixed the feel of knit and purl.   That's worked.  My speed and rhythm of the knit cast-off have improved a lot in the last three squares.   Project #3 is knit on another short cable, in 20 stitch rows (to get to that casting off part faster) with #9 wooden needles.  The color of the yarn is different enough from the colors in the needles that it's no problem, and the larger size means faster work.  OTOH, I've discovered that I really don't like being interrupted every 34 rows to cast off and cut the yarn and then have to cast on again.  So part of this blanket will be knit in long strips, probably in a solid color.  

Having this knitting going has been a sanity saver since early May, when my husband went into the medical system for multiple problems.   I can sit more-or-less serene in a waiting room or hospital room and have something to do with my hands--feel productive, not just "waiting."    Eventually the blankets will go to a charity project and the scarf to a friend.  Eventually I will figure out how to make socks (I have trouble reading patterns because a) I don't know the code and b) I don't know how to do some of the things even when I do grasp the code.)   Code-breaking will come.  I'm not in a hurry. 

Tags: knitting
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