After a loooong session with the knit-and-purl scarf, and a bout of frustration with the seed stitch version of the catnip mouse pattern (I’m sure this is my novice pattern-reading showing through), I have not picked up my knitting in about a week. I want to start something new, but the beginning of the felted tote on DPNs is too intimidating right now. I have asked my knitting mentor nicely for help (to the point where I could be stalking); I may have to simply be patient, or travel to the LYS, and plan on transporting the bag back home on DPNs. Scary! Dropped stitches everywhere!
I’m ready to start Amy’s Suki, but as I told Rob at Threadbear Fiber Arts via e-mail last week when explaining why I could not order the yarn yet, I don’t have room for a stash, and to pace myself, I prefer not to have more than two projects going at once – right now, it’s a mouse and the knit-and-purl scarf that seems it will never end.
So what did I do instead of knit? Read about knitting, and offer to knit things for people – a ribbed stocking cap in merino wool from Hip to Knit for my father-in-law, and the Bob top for my mother-in-law. I have got to be stopped.
But not quite yet. I read the instructions for a simple sock class and I think I’m ready to try it – the pattern uses short rows to shape the heel, and Knitty’s explanation makes short rows seem simple (thanks, Bonne Marie!). I’d love to knit some socks for the Socknitters Children in Common Challenge. Plus, Sock Fest 2004 is coming to Toledo next April, and I plan to be there.
See? More reading and yapping than knitting. Must change that. But before I go, two links you might find handy, particularly if you knitblog with MovableType. Do you get comments? Would you like your readers to be able to follow along with your comment discussions via e-mail? Try the subscribe to comments script from Scriptygoddess. Lots of knitting links crowding your sidebar? Use these tips and templates to make a knitting portal, right inside MovableType. If you have questions about these two, let me know – I’m happy to put down my needles long enough to help.
My finishing skills remain simply average, but Charlie doesn’t seem to care that my wonton is slightly lumpy. He liked it, and I was inspired to start Wendy’s cabled mouse pattern for the Great Charity Mouse-a-thon. I’ve actually started three mice as of today, and they were like the Three Bears’ bowls of porridge: the first one was too loose, the second one got off-pattern at the end, and the third one seems to be just right – I should finish it tonight. Cabling is easier than I thought, and seems to work like magic – I must be missing something!
I’m also halfway through the knit-and-purl scarf, and looking forward to getting started on the felted tote – with more mice sprinkled in for good measure.
I went to the LYS intending to get the materials to start the Suki bag; they didn’t really have the colors Amy and I and I picked out at ThreadBear Fiber Arts, so I made a mental note to order there instead. I did, however, come away with yarn for the cute felted tote I had seen earlier (Cascade 220 and a skein of Noro Kureyon for some stripes – ooh!). Starting the bag has proved more difficult than I thought, between tangling the yarn as I was trying to wind it into a ball (excellent ball-winding directions here) and trying to master Emily Ocker’s circular cast-on (not as hard as it looks) and wrangle size 11 DPNs (pretty darn hard).
The advice from the knitlist was very helpful; I got confirmation that it was okay to try working with four DPNs instead of five, and an alternative method of starting using a waste-yarn crochet cast on thanks to Eileen from Oregon – her help made my day. Best of all, I ran into the woman who taught me how to knit so long ago in the local bookstore yesterday. When I mentioned the totebag, she said “buy me a cup of coffee, and I’d be happy to help you get it started.”
I also got a chance to make my own fancy beaded stitch markers, so I’m ready as ready can be to knit that tote bag in the round. The people at the bead store were amazed that I was able to restrain myself to such a small purchase – I explained I was just crossing over from another craft.
Finally, from the serendipity files, I got an e-mail from a knitlist member with a copy of Aran Knitting for sale at a reasonable price, just like I’d asked for. If Virtual Yarns does reprint the book (as noted in the comments for the last entry), it will be interesting to see if they make revisions to the patterns as they have on the website (offering more sizes, etc.). For now, I’m just amazed that my request to the world at large worked.