Saturday, July 29, 2006

a revelation

On the knitlist, there have been a few postings about knitter's shoulder/knitter's thumb, etc. I posted back and asked, "What about knitter's pointer and middle finger on the right hand?" I mentioned how my two fingers didn't start bugging me until I began sock knitting (which I have currently put on the backburner!) Someone posted a general response about stretching before and after knitting and not just the fingers. She also mentioned acupuncture (no thank you!) or even yoga. One of the list moms replied to me personally (I feel ever so special!) and she suggested that I try continental knitting a try. I did a search, went to knittinghelp.com to view a video and then stupid me remembered that I'm supposed to already be a continental knitter. I knew I wasn't. I knew I wasn't an English knitter either (watched this video too!). Before I even went to that yarn shop and casually asked the woman about what to do about my pain I had a feeling that I was a combined knitter. I had been doing research on left-handed knitting and I just knew I was a combined knitter. I viewed the video again for combined knitting and it's exactly what I do!!! Then I went to Annie Modesitt's site and I had been there before. I have it bookmarked because her step by step process looked exactly how I knit. Now if only she'd talk about how to not be in pain!! SO, I'm not a left-handed continental knitter. I am a combined knitter. Here's what it said on Annie's site. :) Combination Knitting: "As the name implies, it's a combination of Western (or German/ English/ American) style knitting and Eastern knitting (practiced in Asia, Africa, South America and Islamic countries.)" Leave it to me that I'd even knit differently than most. On the knittinghelp.com site, it says: The advantage to this method is that Combined purling is as fast as Continental purling, and many people find it far easier to execute. Also, I've been told that this is an excellent method for knitting without looking (good knitting method for blind knitters or those with poor eye site?), because you can feel whether you've come to a knit or purl stitch, because they're oriented differently on the needle. This method presents a bit of challenge when following instructions that assume your stitches are oriented the other way. You can always re-orient your stitches when you come to them, before executing a required decrease, or you can learn the combined way of working that stitch in the most efficient manner. Now it makes much more sense why I would prefer purling to knitting. I can also knit w/o looking too. I thought everyone could. I'll look down once in a while just to make sure that I've knitted the correct stitch though. I have yet to notice the difference in how the stitches feel though. That's something I'll have to work on. Something else that's noteworthy is the fact that it specifically said following instructions for patterns might be a challenge. Whew. And I just thought it was because I was left handed! It's nice to finally know.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Well, I haven't spent too much time working on my cable scarf because I've been working on that damn hat. Now that it's complete, I won't feel guilty about working on this scarf. Here's what I've got so far-which isn't much since I started it last Saturday or so. I haven't touched in @ least 3 days it seems. Here is a more detailed picture of my scarf so far. In the first pic I posted, you couldn't really see the cables. Now you can! yay! In other knitting news, I think I've figured out what I'm going to do with my skeins of tlc cara mia yarn. I was putting away the leftover yarn from the hat from hell and looked @ the wrapper of the tlc yarn and it says worsted! I might try to do another cable scarf with that yarn. We'll see!

hat from hell finally complete!

Yes, the title is correct. After my day off from knitting yesterday, I was determined to finish this hat because honestly, I didn't want to work with it any longer! It is seen here draped on a polar bear. It's a bit small and I actually didn't need the second skein of debbie bliss that I picked up earlier in the week but it's done. I don't ever have to touch it again! I think I'm going to make my fiance some fingerless mitts with the other skein of yarn.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

stupid, stupid hat!

You know that knitty hat that I already was harboring contempt for? Well, it's turning into full-blown hatred. I frogged that piece of crap @ least twice-(not completely) and today I am taking a knitting break from all my projects. I have only specifically been working on that hat so that I could complete it soon and be able to focus more on my cable KAL and the goodies for my one skein secret pal. I don't know if it's the pattern, if it's me, or if it's me interacting with a pattern I really don't like. I don't think I'm going to be using anymore of this particular person's patterns! The decreases, based on my understanding suck and for some reason, don't work. They don't really make sense to me either. I should've just stuck with the way I already know how to do decreases on a hat. Whatever. Tomorrow, I plan to be done with that hat and I won't be found cursing @ the damn thing any longer!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Currently OTN's

This would be the second sock in my second pair of socks. Love the colors-which is part of the reason I zipped through the first sock but the first sock gave me possible early arthritis! Why must socks be knitted on such small needles again???

This is a hat. The pattern is from knitty. I really don't like that the fact that I had to cast on 122 stitches and not join them! I'm using circulars because I don't have 5's that are long enough to hold 122 stitches! Why is stockinette stitch so time consuming?

I have a baby beanie hat that I'm working on as well but it isn't as far along as these two projects are-as if they're far along!

knitty fears destroyed!

When I first began knitting, I signed up for the 'cool' knitting newsletters, online mags, etc. My favorite remains to be knitty. Now, when I first started looking @ the patterns provided on knitty, I was scared. I didn't think I could ever knit any of their patterns-especially when the levels of difficulty were either mellow, tangy, piquant, or extraspicy. That was enough to scare me away until I saw in the most recent issue, the pattern for fetching. I had been wanting to make fingerless gloves for a while now but hadn't quite found a pattern that I wanted to just jump up and try. Then I saw the pattern for fetching. I think what got me sold on the idea was the fact that I could also practice cabling. Unfortunately, my fingerless gloves don't match in size which I started to notice while working on the second one but I just wanted to get them done since in the pattern it says you can purchase the yarn Friday after work and by Sunday you have a fab pair of fingerless gloves. So here's my fab pair. I'll be making more as I get better @ cabling. I'm also trying out another knitty pattern! ;)

first squares of my blanket

When I first began knitting, I had this brilliant idea to make myself a granny square blanket. I had the idea all worked out in my head-making the squares, how to piece it together, etc. I made the first batch of squares when I first started knitting. Then I took a break from knitting because this cute little baby cardigan nearly killed my pinky! When school let out, it gave me more time to concentrate on my knitting projects. I finally started to put together my blanket. I'm going to need a heck of a lot more squares to finish it but it's okay. I'm proud of myself for finally putting it together after all this time! Once I'm done focusing on my other projects, I can always come back to this one.

It's done!

I finally finished it. It took longer than I had anticipated but I finished it before I went home to see my mother for the 4th of July. :) I tried to get a good pic. This was as best as I could get.

the beginnings of my scribble-scrabble scarf

I saw the scarf in a lion brand yarn newsletter and thought this would be a great gift for my one skein secret pal! I ordered the yarn (got the thick and quick in the wrong color mind you, I blame the computer!) and once everything I needed arrived I started work on it. I bought enough to make two scarves. I figured I'd make one for my secret pal and the other for myself. As I thought about it, I figured it would be cheating a bit because we're supposed to only use one skein of yarn for our gifts for our secret pals. SO, I decided that I would give the first one to my mother as part of her birthday gift. :) Now I haven't worked with bulky yarn in a long time it seemed so it was strange using size 15 needles again. I had been working with 2's! Now the pattern was incorrect-@ least for me, being the left-handed knitter that I am, it wasn't working. I kept comparing my work with the picture and it wasn't a match. I think I ended up doing the opposite of what it said to do and things finally started flowing. I've been learning more and more about how difficult it is to be a left-handed knitter in a right-hand world.

my first pair of socks!

One day I just decided that I wanted to make a pair of socks. How hard could it be? Ugh..I had no idea what I was getting myself into! I'm a bit more knowledgeable about knitting socks now-like to not use 100% acrylic yarn again because they're so hot and they're not very comfortable. Plus the yarn I used obviously didn't stripe the same way for both socks! I had the absolute worst time trying to turn the heel. The stitches didn't add up on the pattern I was using and I was getting so frustrated! I abandoned the part of my pattern that told me how to turn a heel and went to Socks101. Talk about a godsend. From there, I learned how to turn a heel the correct way. Finishing the sock was a whole 'nother story too. I can't tell you how difficult it is to follow a sock pattern and be a left-handed knitter. I figured out how to redo the toe shaping so it worked for me but now I have to figure out how to make the gussets part work for me. Sigh..

dpn's

This hat has a bit of a story behind it. I began it around when I first started knitting. Circulars didn't scare me that much! As I was being told the pattern for this hat (the first time around), I freaked out a bit when I heard that I was going to need to use dpn's to finish it. I got as far as I could with the circulars and I tried to finish the hat, sans dpn's. My mom tried to finish it for me (she crochets) and I was unhappy with the results so I just left the hat unfinished for a very long time. I eventually ended up frogging it because I was tired of looking @ the ufo in my closet! :( I picked it back up again this past winter and I was able to finish it! I was no longer afraid of dpn's and to prove that, I made two other hats. :) This hat I made for my fiance. I hadn't learned how to cable yet so for me it was kind of hard trying to make the hat more manly! This was the last hat I made during my winter break and this one is mine. :)

Thursday, July 13, 2006

first posting!

I stumbled upon a cool KAL that I'm totally going to join. It's a cable KAL. I've never done a KAL before so we'll see how this goes. It could become an addiction! Right now, I'm still deciding on the kind of yarn I want to purchase for the Irish Hiking Scarf, the first project. It's sweltering as we speak so I don't really want to work with anything to warm but I don't want to use cotton. Decisions, decisions.