Sunday, October 7, 2007

Rib woes and and photo finishes...

Before I start, I will explain a couple of things. I usually have two projects going at all times. One of them is "on the couch" which literally means what it says. It's what I'm knitting on at home; what I can pick up when I plop on the couch to catch a few minutes of TV or talk to hubby. It's what I don't need to finish anytime soon, and so can work on carefully, contentedly, and at my leisure. It's also often what will be the biggest, or the most uncomfortable to tote around with me. Working off two balls does make for a headache when your toting it around. Right now, on the couch, is the Bendigo Alpaca Jacket, knit with two strands of different color alpaca that I mentioned in an earlier post. What I didn't mention is that it is done entirely in 4 x 2 rib stitch. I hate rib stitch of any kind, but most particularly the uneven ones. And I have trouble with my guage in rib. The switching back and forth doesn't agree with me. I reckon though those little imperfections are what makes handknits unique. Yeah, I'll go with that.

So WHY did I pick this pattern again? Oh yeah! It was the only one I found that I really liked that allowed me to make one jumper with two colors without resorting to stripes. But Uggggghhh, the rib is killing me.

The second project I have going is "in the bag", which (again, quite literally) means I carry it around in my bag with me. This is usually the easiest of the two, as distractions are more common away from home, and errors harder to fix. My knitting bag is sheep shaped and I call him Shelby. I got him at Spotlight for 12.95 and he goes everywhere with me. He has a zipper, which I don't like in a knitting bag...but he's just soooo cute...I can make allowances.

Anyway, in the bag right now is the vest for my husband (dark blue, Paton's techno fleece). And guess what, it's a rib pattern! 2 x 2 rib. At least it's even, but that doesn't even begin to make up for the fact that it's furry AND it's knit on 4mm needles, which is just way to small to be knitting anything furry on, but are the size the pattern calls for, and actually the size the yarn says is appropriate. The thread jams up around my needles and drives me banana's, and TINKing is a headache of massive proportions. Just counting stitches is a bother, as the furry stuff makes 2 look like 1 or 1 look like 2. Add to that, it's difficult to see the pattern as you are knitting. Once it started going, you could see the pattern in the finished cloth, but AS your knitting, it's really hard to see what is a knit, and what is a purl. I've actually put a marker every 20 stitches (it's 110 stitches across, hubby being a big man) so I don't have to count all the way back to the beginning to see what comes next. I know that after the marker is always a 2 purl stitches, and I reckon that has saved me heaps of time. Anyhow, it's a major pain, and I reckon that's one of the reasons I chose it as my "in the bag" project. If I'm stuck out there in the mean cruel world and need to knit, if it's all I have it's more likely to get done sometime this century.

Which is why it was almost a relief when I realized I only had a week to get a baby jumper ready for a workmate who is leaving on her maternity leave soon. For some reason I'd been thinking I had until the end of November. She knows she's having a boy, so I pulled out my old unused blue velvet flake and the pattern I used to knit the pink jumpers for my granddaughter and my other workmate a few months back. I modified it somewhat. I used the version with no 4 ply trim like I did for the other workmate, plus I left off the lap over and the button hole. While it's a bit plain, it looks cool, and you don't need all the frills for little boys anyway. I won't include a pic cause there are already the ones on here of the pick versions. Plus I'm just too lazy to go take a pic and download the camera right now.

So making that took me away from the rib for awhile, but now that it's done, I reckon I'm facings weeks of rib for awhile. I will be a good girl and not start anything else for at least I won't today...

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