Thursday, September 21, 2006


I admit it, I have startitis. I don't know why; it may have something to do with being bored with The Sock, but I think it also has to do with the fact that everything I was making - the socks, the cabled footie, and the FBS - is red. The same shade of bricky goodness. And while I love red, that is even too much for me.

So the other night I bought some lovely Misti Alpaca DK (also alpaca and silk, because I am obsessed with silk lately - the socks are merino/silk, the shawl is alpaca/silk) to do some stranded knitting. I bought green and orange, though, two colors I thought might work but once I got home - nope. I combined the orange with some chocolate brown fingering weight I have laying around - doubled - and started making We Call Them Pirates.

You know, the free hat pattern from Hello Yarn? I can't imagine myself ever wearing it but it might be fun to make.

So I spent two - TWO - hours stuck in the hellish landscape that is Provisional Cast-on, and finally got all my 128 stitches loaded on the needles. No animals were harmed during the cast-on process but I think it's possible that I may have leaked a few brain cells that I actually needed. Finally it made sense and I got through it. Had a bad moment when I thought the knitting might be twisted, but turns out it wasn't. Knit, purl, knit, knit, pick up color 2...

whoops, I left out a WHOLE LINE of the chart already. No worries, I'll make it work. Well, this one I won't leave out...knit, knit...OH HEY, look at that, I knitted HALF the stitches with row 4 and the other half with row 5!

You know. I don't need to draw you a picture, right? It's what happens when we attention-deficit knitters tackle something new. (Don't worry, it's funny to me too.) I think I have the attention span of a small puppy, and there was the idea that since all my row counters are being used I could muddle through without one, and then I never actually PUT that stitch marker at the beginning of the round because Hi! Tails! but apparently that didn't help either.

So it looks like there is Another Frogging in my future. Which is the problem with starting a bunch of things - eventually decisions have to be made or the thing ripped out. I do like the hat, but I'm thinking of using the charts at HY to make my own pattern without the skulls.

So there are certain things that I do in my knitting that keep me on track - stitch markers between pattern repeats, using a row counter, using a ruler to mark the row of the chart I'm on, etc. I've seen nifty tricks far and wide...but I never remember them. What are your tricks? Please leave a comment and share! I'll compile them.

(That reminds me, I am missing my lovely Threaded Bliss lucite ruler and a nail file. I have a feeling they ran off together and are living in sin in one of my handbags, or possibly under the couch.)


Blogger Trillian42 said...

Post-Its! I have gobs of them. I put them right above the row I am working, so that I can see how the stitches relate to the row below.

1:37 PM  
Blogger Magatha said...

Monochromatism. It is an affliction of mine as well. Too much of a good thing? Naw. But the eyes can use a rest from your favorite color every now and then. That is when I knit 'male pattern blandness' objects like grey socks. After a few rows of that, the red (or purple in my world) is looking pretty good again.

5:30 PM  
Blogger KSD said...

To spawn a lucite nail file? A ruler with emery-board-edges? There might be a patent pending here. . .

6:32 AM  
Anonymous Mandy said...

When I made the pirate hat, I didn't use post-its to keep my place. Since the chart was big enough, I just folded the paper above the row I was on. Same concept as a post-it, but you don't need honkin' big post-its.

Also, to be sure I remembered to move onto the next row when it was time, I put a unique stitch marker (as in, I use regular plastic st markers between pattern repeats, but a thick cotton homemade one to mark the beg). This may be obvious and something everyone does already, but it helps me with the remembering.

9:56 AM  

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