Rushing It

Carried by the high my first steek afforded me, I blithely picked up stitches along the neckband of my colorwork sweater.

As I sat and chatted with my in-laws during their week-long visit from Ohio, I worked away at it.

Watching Muppet movies with my kids, I worked away at it.

Drinking coffee and staying up late, I worked on it.

And then I bound off. It was done.

It looked awful.

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I knew all along that I was rushing it.

I picked up 2 stitches out of 3. It really needs 3 out of 4.

I knit a 2×2 rib, but to match the hem and the cuffs, I should have done 1×1 rib.

I was relaxed and happy, so the stitches are relaxed and happy, too.

The end result is an awesome sweater with a sloppy, poorly sized, pathetically executed button band.

I don’t have much time left if I am going to enter this sweater in the Mosaic¬†Moon Mini Skien Contest, so I skipped the pouting, knitting something else, procrastinating, and whining phase of frogging and got right to it.

I will be glad to have it done right. I will be happy that I frogged it. I will like the look of a more dense 1×1 ribbing that actually fits the sweater. I will be proud to wear it when it looks good.

But today I am a little pouty and a little whiney as I pick up all of those stitches again. Today I am wondering if I can finish it in time to block it and photograph it for the contest. Today I am a little irritated with myself.

I guess that is what I get for rushing it.

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Not What I Planned to Write

So, it was about this time that I had planned to write about a finished sweater for The Princess.

A red hooded coat with a cabled yoke. An adorable squishy masterpiece. (This one, to be precise)

The Princess and I poured over patterns on Ravelry looking for the perfect sweater to make with the yarn I purchased from Craftsy.com, a red Bollicine Baby Night. Once it was picked out, she assumed that she would have a sweater in minutes and even told someone not 45 minutes later, “Mama is almost done making my new, red coat!”

I knit the yoke. She said, “Is is almost done?”

I picked up the stitches and knit the body. She said, “Have you finished my red coat, yet?”

I bound off along the bottom edge and held it up. Hmmm. Looks small. She said, “Can I wear it now? I don’t need sleeves.”

I shrugged off the doubt and picked up the stitches for the edging/button band. She said, “When can I try it on?”

I bound off the edging and held it up. Yup. Definitely small. She said, “Let’s see if it fits me.”

It doesn’t.

It doesn’t really even fit The Munchkin who is signifigantly smaller. (For those of you who are wondering – No, I did not make a gauge swatch. Yes, I regret not making a gauge swatch. No, I did not learn my lesson and I will probably skip the gauge swatch next time, too.)

Now, the really sad part of this sad, sad tale is that, while I know that I could just pull it out and make a bigger size, I also know that I have no where near enough yarn to do so.

On the flip side, I got to go yarn shopping – and that spin worked on the four year old.

“No, honey, it doesn’t fit. Let’s pick out a new color together and I will make a bigger one for you.”

She chose blue.

Green Mountain Spinnery Cotton Comfort Navy Odd Weight

So, instead of writing a post about a finished red coat for The Princess, I am writing a post about casting on a blue coat for The Princess.

Maybe I should do a gauge swatch first …

Unbelievable

So, when I cast on my Rick socks, I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to see that spiraling rib start to take shape. I knit the cuff, and then jumped right into the leg, thinking how cool it was that a few ssk’s and yarn overs were all it took to make that really cool look. But, after knitting about two inches, I stopped. This didn’t look like the picture in the book.

My spiraling rib was inverted. Huh. That’s weird.

See? Here it is, inside out.

So, I went on Ravelry (what did knitters do before Ravelry?) and perused the 643 other pairs of Rick socks that have been made. No one else seemed to have the same trouble. Sock after beautiful, spiraling sock met my search for help.

Eratta. That had to be it. But the only eratta for this pattern didn’t start ’till the gusset.

So, I enlisted the help of the “Cookie A Socks Fan Club” on Ravelry, posting a desperate plea for someone to tell me where I was going wrong. And waited. Nothing.

Just about the time I started to consider frogging the whole thing and giving myself up for a huge idiot who couldn’t even decipher a knitting chart, I had a thought.

Maybe I am not doing the ssk right.

This is a scary thought. Do you know how many times I have executed the simple ssk stitch? How many lace charts I have followed? How many sweaters I have shaped? How many stitch patterns I have knit?

But it was my final hope. So, I headed over to Youtube (what did knitters do before Youtube?) and looked up a video on “how to ssk”.

And, what do you know? I have been doing it wrong all this time.

ALL. THIS. TIME.

Oh, the joys of being a self taught knitter.

I have been ssk-ing – slip, slip, pass the stitches back to left needle, knit – which produces a twisted stitch. For some reason, it has never mattered and I have never noticed till now.

The temptation to rip out everything that I have ever knitted and do it right has passed (it was brief). I am okay now.

But, isn’t that unbelievable?