Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Hey Y'all,
Hope you're having a great December. I am so happy to report that I FINALLY FINISHED IT! Yes, the grandfather clock sock I started maybe a year and a half ago is now DONE! It measures 79" in height and 64" around. I sure hope it fits. I'll be delivering it to my friend soon and we shall see. I made it with pencil roving, the same sort I used for a Cowichan sweater a few years ago. When I first started with pencil roving it felt like knitting with cotton candy, I broke and tangled the strands a lot. But now I'm so accustomed to it (after nine million hours) that I might just order another Cowichan sweater kit and try to make a new and improved one.

This is not all I've been working on. I knocked out a hat for a friend and made some progress in my Adult Surprise Jacket, based on Elizabeth Zimmermann's Baby Surprise Jacket. I thought I was doing great when I discovered I'd made a huge mistake. Hint: when the pattern says s1 K2Tog psso it does not mean ssk. Several rows into this wrong move the whole thing had gone awry. I thought I was going to have to unravel it down to the studs, but I frogged for a spell, got it back to a not-messed-up spot, wondered how I might get nearly 300 tiny stitches back on the needles, then remembered the blessing that is an embroidery needle and an after-the-fact lifeline.

To insure I would (hopefully) make no more errors, at least not of the variety already made, I broke down and watched a couple of YouTube videos laying out just how to work the Surprise Jacket. I don't know why I don't watch these videos before casting on-- SO HELPFUL to have it explained. Because even though EZ was a genius, and her knitting prose (and even patterns) are deliciously conversational, there are definitely spots in her directions where it sure helps to get pointers from someone who's gone before you. I just read ahead a bit in the pattern, started to panic, then remembered that I'll check out more videos before proceeding to the next section.

Beyond that, I got on the needles the start of a beret, using a pattern I picked up at KnitWit in Portland and... I admit it... the wonderful Swans Island yarn I was supposed to be using for my lace half-pi shawl. I'd put that down to focus on the clock sock, picked it back up, convinced myself that the many errors weren't so egregious, did a few more rows, realized I was not relaxing, accepted that I am powerless over lace, and then decided to just unravel. That yarn is so soft, so amazing to work with, I decided I wanted to use it for something simple and fast, so I could focus on the feel and not tear my hair out over my ongoing difficulties with charts.

I still will try charts again-- see aforementioned goal of another Cowichan sweater. But I'm going to wait until after the holidays, when all this end of the year chaos gives way to something calmer. Hope you're working on lots of cool projects, too.

Don't forget you can Early Bird Register for the 2015 Knitting and Yoga Retreats starting January 1st.


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