22 August 2010

A Tale of Knitting Bitterly

I first tried knitting in 2002 or 2003.  I'm not sure which--I was sixteen or seventeen at the time.  I learned how to do a long-tail cast on and how to knit and purl.  As a result, I knitted a piece about eighteen inches wide and four inches tall in 2x2 rib.  And then the royal blue yarn and the aluminum size 9 needles sat abandoned in my closet.  And then I moved, and they sat abandoned in my new closet.



Eleven months ago today, 22 September, I walked into the yarn store near my university and bought yarn and knitting needles.  I had seen a pattern online for a Hogwarts scarf and wanted to make one for my little sister for Christmas, so I purchased yellow and black yarn (Hufflepuff colours) and a size 7 circular needle and, with the help of YouTube and half a dozen knitting sites, I cast on again, some seven or eight years after I first attempted knitting, and began knitting again. Just knitting.  Solid knitting.  Solid stockinette stitch in the round for about seven feet.  It took four months.  (And to think--I've been contemplating knitting a Doctor Who scarf... fifteen or so feet of garter stitch.  Glutton for punishment perhaps?)




Of course, it wasn't my only project in those four months.  After about two months I was hooked but BORED!  So I searched through Ravelry and began my first ever pair of fingerless mitts.  I finished them in three days, but in that project I learned how to use DPN's, kfb, and create a thumb gusset.  Soon after I knit two more pairs from that same pattern.  After finishing my first pair of mitts, I officially dubbed myself a knitster, making my knitiversary 23 November.




Then I began to knit hats.  Well, just one hat really.  I have now knit four hats from the same pattern, all of which have been gifted away.  They were my first experience with cables (well, my only experience with cables) and I learned other ways to increase and decrease.




After finishing what felt like miles of stockinette stitch and having knit three hats and three pair of mitts (only three patterns) I decided to take a knitting right of passage... socks.

And, of course, I wasn't going to knit plain socks.  Nope.  Lace.  (Through which I learnt that I was doing the ssk stitch wrong.)  I was intimidated, though, by the thought of turning the heel (dun, dun, dun!  That's the sound of doom, in case you didn't recognise it).  But I had a good pattern, and I just followed the pattern, trying not to over think the steps.  I mean, how is it possible?  But, line by line you go along and then, suddenly, *bam!* you've turned the heel.  Ta da!  It's magic.  I swear.  I then learned how to do a heel flap and gusset, and then how to kitchener.


I then had Second Sock Syndrome for a month, but had knit a second, non-matching sock (which had SSS for 6 months, during which time I knit three other pair of socks) and have now knit five pair total, am working on a sixth, and have plans for several more...  ♪ Hand Knit Socks! ♫






Then I knit hats for a few sibling-children:






I have recently finished my first shawl and am well into my second.  Here's the finished shawl (something you haven't seen yet!):




The pattern is Bermuda.  One of the other knitsters at Knitter's Anonymous had knit it, and we all loved it.  I knit it in Mini Mochi "Beach Scene" and several others are now knitting it in Mini Mochi, which just has lovely long colour changes.  I think I'm going to re-block it though and try to round out the bottom.  It seems that my gauge is small; it didn't turn out quite as long as I would like, but the wingspan is a good length.

And here's the one in progress.  It's not too exciting yet, but when it grows up it will be "In the Land of Oz" Lifelines are amazing, wonderful things... I've already had to rely on them twice! :



I've also finished two stealth projects which I can't show you.  I'm sorry for you, because they really are lovely.  I'm quite pleased.  That means I have two more stealth projects in progress to finish by Christmas.  Insert Little Engine that Could motto here.  I take that back.  Little Engine that Could is all well and good, but I prefer the mantra "Panic is Overrated and Unnecessary" that I picked up from a favourite professor.  Besides, if they're not done by Christmas, what are the recipients going to do about it?  Ingratitude simply gets you ungifted completely.  But I'd like to have them done by Christmas.

Which means I probably ought to stop blogging about knitting and actually go knit!

2 comments:

  1. That's quite a knitting resume for less than a year as a knitster! As for panic, knitting panic is most definitely overrated and unnecessary, especially given that unfinished Christmas knitting makes perfect birthday gifts :)

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  2. I'm glad you're enjoying your knitting sister! Your hands are as busy as bees. Love ya!

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