Thursday, July 27, 2006


I had a long post, but I deleted it. I'm stuck in knitting purgatory - the point in time where you start Learning a New Technique but you aren't Quite Comfortable yet.

Fair isle. Not kick-your-mom fair isle, just three colors, two per row and a four-row repeat, but enough to kick my behind. I'm making the cosmetic bag from Holiday Knits.

How do you hold your yarn? Both in left? One in each? Both in right? Help! Send help please!

Had a fun lunch with Betty. I must say, it is awesome to have lunch with a friend and talk mostly about knitting and not feel like they are going to think you're crazy. Because I have two cats, I'm single and 36 and I knit. Because at some point people are going to start giving me those looks.

So what I was posting before about (but went on way too long) was the idea that books are designed to work in a certain manner - letterspacing, line spacing, font, color, margins, size - so that when you're reading you don't realize you're reading. Getting way involved in the story is why people read - it's called suspension of disbelief. The page design helps that, so your conscious mind can disengage from the physical act of reading and focus on the content. Knitting is like this too - dependent upon muscle memory - and it becomes automatic over time. I'm not there yet at all with this stranded knitting stuff. But when I finish I will have a lovely gift to give someone. I complained all the way through the lining, because it was knit on 4s with worsted cotton. (Ouch.) Now I've changed to 6's but am using 3 colors. I am not giving up, but I could use your tips and tricks.

S.O.S. !!


Blogger Martina said...

I may be slower at fair Isle than others but I just leave the yarn not in use hanging making sure I catch it in every 3 or 4 stitches if it is not needed. I am no help what so ever. Stick with it you will find your way! Be the Fair Isle!

3:26 PM  
Blogger ~kirsten~ said...

I'm with Martina...I just let it hang until I need it and catch it every 4-5 stitches. Just as helpful, yes?!

And I want to make that bag as well. But I seem to be violently allergic to knitting needles or yarn or something...

4:11 PM  
Blogger lorinda said...

I took a class and learned the two-handed method and love it. You are in the conscious incomptence or conscious competence (you be the judge) plane right now, but you'll move up to conscious incompetence. Hang in there and remember that knitting once felt like this too. It will be a beautiful gift. How blessed your friends are!

4:27 PM  
Blogger lorinda said...

Wow, speaking of incompetence. Did I write that entire comment wrong? Try again--moving from conscious incompetence to conscious competence to unconscious competence. There, whew. Sorry for being incompetent.

4:28 PM  
Blogger Peevish said...

Oooh, I haven't attempted fair isle yet, but you have my best wishes!

6:05 PM  
Blogger purldiver said...

On a totally different subject - Jen, what do you think about Floyd? It's breaking my heart!

6:41 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

I'm nearing the end of my first Fair Isle project...the Fana pullover (Dale), just 2 colors. I did give the various yarn-holding options a fair chance, but being a continental knitter, I just couldn't get the hang of having yarn in my right hand (one in each, actually) - so I just buckled down and figured out the best way for me to hold both yarns in my left hand. Once I got comfortable with that, it was smooth sailing!

Hang in there and keep trying!

7:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hold the yarn in both hand... I knit continential with my left and throw with my right...

9:38 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I'm a combination knitter. I hold both strands in my left hand. I do use help though... You should look into getting something like this:

I also found a metal one at Wal-mart.

6:34 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:35 AM  
Blogger Betty said...

I had a great time @ lunch! Let's do it again!

I was hoping all along that if I took up knitting and became part of the knitting community (hang out at LYS, SnB, message boards, etc.) that I would finally make friends here in TN.


8:09 AM  
Blogger mrspao said...

Oooh you are brave. I think Fair Isle may be beyond my capabilities!

3:58 PM  
Blogger Jinjifore said...

I do fair isle with both hands, knitting continental with one color and english with the other. Since my continental knitting is looser, I try to hold the color with the least stitches and most floats in my left hand, so the floats won't pull across the back. Well, that's the theory.

9:35 PM  

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