Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Labor Day Knitting Notes


C's Tweedy Scarf

Photographer: C is for Camera. Model: Istvan.
Styling/Makeup: Monsieur Pierre for Salon de la Pouffe.
Fragrance: CK Purl

This weekend was replete with delights of every sort, a fitting end to a summer that, for once, went right more than it went wrong. I don't have time to gush about it now, though, so here's a small knitting report.

C's Tweedy Scarf, above, is finished. Istvan has appropriated it and may not give it up without a fuss. He has a definite noli me tangere air about him at the moment. I suppose it comes of having nothing to do all day except sit around C's apartment watching Prince videos. That sort of example is bound to tell on a bear's personality.

I also finished up the lower body for the Rhinebeck sweater, and I'm halfway up the first sleeve.

Maggie Righetti says in Knitting in Plain English that when making a fitted garment you need to try the thing on from time to time, instead of just knitting away in breathless suspense about whether you're doing it right or not. Sensible woman, and I'm glad I read her book. About halfway up the body (7 inches or so) I took the piece off the needles and put it on a piece of waste yarn and tried it on. It fit. Sigh of relief.

Putting it back on the needles wasn't exactly fun, but it did give me a chance to try my hand at fixing twisted and dropped stitches. (My previous tactic in both situations was to hope very much that they would not happen.) I now feel comfortable enough working the dropped stitches with a crochet hook that I may try Zimmerman's phoney seams down the sides of the sweater.

I started the first sleeve on a set of Brittany double-points that I picked up for a song. I'd never used Brittany needles before, and they have nearly knocked Addi turbos right out of the number one spot in my affections. Knitting with them is positively sensual. I like them so much that I stuck with them long after I could have switched over to a Clover circular.

It's a very pleasant thing, knitting a sleeve in the round. However, I should note that I did depart from Zimmerman's direction to cast on 20% of the total body stitches to make the sleeve cuff. At that circumference, even my quite small hand wouldn't have gone through comfortably, so I upped the figure to 25%. Marilyn and Greg both warned me this might be the case, and they were right.

I can only assume that Anglo-Saxons and Nords like the Zimmerman/Swansen bunch must have unusually slender and willowy extremities, at least in comparison to this stocky Italian/Arab peasant. I like them anyway.

28 comments:

JoVE said...

Maybe Istvan needs his own tweedy scarf? I wouldn't give it up easily either.

markknitz said...

very cool! i finished my first sock and tried it on before binding it off. perfect fit! now i just have to find a needle small enough to pick up the stitches.

goblinbox said...

"Salon de la Pouffe" - LOL!

mattie said...

It's a great day when dropped stitches don't scare you anymore. When you can actually read the stitches and know what should be next. Congrats!

Marilyn said...

Maggie R is my favorite, absolutely. Wish I had had her guidance when I was screwing up my knitting. Get her other book, Designing in Plain English. I understand she is very ill with something chronic--MS possibly? I don't recall. This is why you don't hear anything from her or about her.

Scarf's lovely (as is Istvan), can't wait to see the new sweater. By the way, Brittany dps in the small sizes break. I switched to bamboo after I broke three pairs of #1s.

Jon said...

Oh you should definitely float your marker. Otherwise, you could get ladders on your sleeve and you would be less than thrilled with those, dear.

Sahara said...

After I had been knitting a long time, I read Maggie's book. I received answers to questions that I was too embarrassed to ask in the yarn store.

Knitters need to be handy with the crochet hook, it's such a time saver.

Listen, Christmas is coming. Can I put my order in for a scarf? Why should C and Istvan have it all? ;)

Lee Ann said...

I think I've been to that Salon...damned fine espresso they serve ;-)

I love these new letter jumbles I have to type in order to submit a comment. I always get ones that, if you squint, look like they might be actual, meaningful words. "shoidrl" looks like something I might have to wear if I were still married to the Wrong Person...

Sean said...

it's nice to see Istivan, his cousins are anxiously awaiting their finished parts. It seems that once I missed the deadline, there was no more urgency. But they are next on the list.

I must say, that my initial affection for wood wore off, they just slow me down...which now that I think about it, may not be an entirely bad thing!

sest

Greg said...

You won't regret the extra stiches on the cuff (EZ percentage). Remember that at the underarm too. We must be bigger boys than were in EZ's family.

After seeing the fineness of C's scarf, I started one of my own. Gave up trying to always count 8 rows before the change, some are 8 some are 7 and the randomness is quite nice looking. That's the great thing about knitting, if it feels right, do it.

And glad you've master the picking up of stitches, Franklin. Good to always use a much smaller needle and you'll never have a problem. Even if you do encounter a stubborn stitch, you know how the little dear is supposed to position itself on the needle and you can always give it a loving little twist to head it in the right direction if it gets confused! Knowing what to look for (and almost feel for) is the trick. Greg

birdfarm said...

Loopy put those fake seams on my wonderful bamboo sweater (hey, we never posted photos of it!) and they really help us block it properly after every washing.

On another topic, I'm with Lee Ann on the funky letters. And yes, I'm pretty sure there was a scene in Yentl where Barbra sang about whether she should risk discovery by wearing her shoidrl under her male garb, or whether she should disobey God's commandments by removing it.

It was a profound moment that transcended the story, epitomizing the predicament of any woman torn between beloved traditions and liberating modernity.

Yes, we all have our shoidrls, metaphorically speaking, and must decide: to don or to doff?

Of course, I burned mine in college.

Jean said...

Dear Franklin,

I, too, used to think that Brittany double-points were the ne plus ultra -- until I tried those things Queer Joe sells. I'll never go back.

Jean, in Edinburgh

rahtigger said...

The next most exciting for you to learn (if you don't know it already - sorry, first time to your site) is to do both sleeves on the Magic Loop ... I love those brittany dpns, but I just cannot bring myself to knit two of anything one at a time anymore! Thx!

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Knitters need to be handy with the crochet hook, it's such a time saver.

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