Sunday, August 08, 2010

In which I admit to being a lazy knitter...

I guess it is not that big of an admission...I tend to just generally get lazy in the summer about knitting stuff. It is usually too hot around these parts to truly devote yourself to it.

But you know, there's lazy, and then there's what I really am, and that's: HALF-ASSED.

example #1:

Interweave's Minimalist cardigan. (Previous blog entries about whisper cardigans and ruffled Patons sweaters--you can just forget 'em, they are dead to me now)

And at the very least when it comes to sweaters, I'm not quite so half-assed that I wouldn't do a gauge swatch. I *did* do one (in truth I usually do about half a full swatch, before unravelling it to technically still half-assed I'd venture!) but an attempt at a swatch nonetheless--and off I went.

I knit about 8 inches before I decided "hmmm, I think I'll do the next size down instead".

An intelligent person would probably start over at this point, not just start randomly.decreasing.wherever.they wanted.until.the.whole.back.was.finished.

YARGH...How's that for some subtle decreasing!? Seriously, what was I thinking? Now that the sweater is almost done (I've got about half a sleeve left) I've decided that I can't live with it and have promised myself that I will completely start the back over again.

Example #2:

This gorgeous Cables and Lace beret from Michele Wang.

Sure, it looks cute here, and it really is a gorgeous hat and pattern...

But I had MAJOR gauge-fail issues! I should preface by saying that it was my intention to make this hat for someone with a "big" head (I often kid my friend Suanne that they based this Seinfeld episode on her)--and I knew I was taking a chance using a DK weight yarn on a pattern that called for lace weight.

If not for the ribbed band being way too big (in the photos it's just kind of "placed" on my head) it actually would have worked I think. The body of the beret has the perfect amount of slouch, and using a larger yarn meant I didn't have to repeat the 24-row lace pattern a second time, so that was a serious time-saver!

Note the vast difference in overall size between it and another slouchy hat I finished off last week (the other hat is Le Slouch by Wendy Bernard by the way, and all my yarn details etc. for it can be found on Ravelry)

I'd say that's a pretty big difference in the ribbed opening... (she says as one hat literally swallows the other...)

I probably could have gotten away with it all if I had just cast on less for the ribbing (and then increased accordingly for the pattern), and I am still debating whether it will be at all salvageable if I just tightened up the ribbing by weaving some elastic thread through it.

Though you'd think If I learned anything from all of this it would to just tear back and start over the minute I realized there was an issue--instead of mindlessly thinking I'd somehow fix it all later. Really, you will save yourself what will inevitably be extra work, and subsequent attempts will be far superior to your original.

Sage advice that I already knew but for some reason couldn't bring myself to follow. I know it seems a shame to tear back on hours of work but just DO IT. You'll be much happier in the end.



Anonymous said...

Remember, frogging is your friend. I frog constantly, not because I am half-assed but because I am fickle, fickle.

hibou said...

I share your sickness.

julie said...

Yep, it takes a special kind of brave to make that decision to undo HOURS of work that you've just put in to something, but when you do decide to do it, it feels really good in a weird kind of way :)

Victory Garden Yarn said...

I can't help but laugh (heartily but not meanly) at your sweater woes. I made pretty much an entire Twinkle cardigan before I figured out there was no way the LARGE would ever block out and still fit me...gosh danged small Twinkle patterns. It's still sitting in a half-frogged pile next to my couch, which I trip over every time I walk to my kitchen.

You'd think I would just finish the friggin' frogging already!

andrea said...

Try weaving the elastic through the brim! I've done worked for me. :D

mishi2x said...

The hat looks great!! But, I constantly have the too-big issue with all of my berets. I have a big head, so I need it large, but then it's inelastic. I did weave elastic thread through mine and it made all the difference. Hope you find it wearable!!

Julia said...

You don't have to re-knit the back of your sweater, just hide the extra fabric in the seam! Two people at my office are knitting the minimalist - it's a great sweater!

Love the hat, too bad about the ribbing. I've successfully cut (yes, cut) off ribbing from the bottom of a hat, picked up the live stitches and knit new ribbing from the top down. You could do a decrease round first and then knit ribbing with less stitches. It's totally salvageable! It's so cute!

Reckless Glue said...

Julia, you are possibly a genius, I think I WILL cut off that ribbing... tho attempt number two of the back of that sweater is virtually done--it was just too deformed--nor do I really want a bunchy seam.

I thought of you this week when I was at my LYS big spinrite sale --discontinued old gold all the way!!