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My personal (but public) notes about my homebrewing, knitting and other random stuff

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Backwards and forwards

Yesterday morning I had a very frustrating knitting experience. I'd knitted about 7 rows of my tote bag (at 68 stitches per row, that's 476 stitches, or a fair amount of work) and before I noticed that about 4 rows back I'd somehow managed to purl nearly half a row instead of knitting, which broke up my beautiful smooth stocking stitch with a random purl ridge. If it had been a whole row, I'd have been tempted to leave it in and call it a pattern variation, but as it was I decided that it would look too odd in the finished article and would bug me far too much in the long run, so I decided to rip out to the offending section and fix it. The net result was that I had only about 6 rows to show for my morning's work, but at least it's all reasonably neat stocking stitch. At the moment the piece is just over 3" long. It's got to go on for a total of 11" stocking stitch and 1" garter stitch. After that I have to do another identical panel for the back, a gusset (only about 10 stitches/row but going on for nearly 40"), a pair of straps (112 stitches on each, but fortunately only worked for about 7 rows) and a smallish panel in a contrasting colour to make an inside pocket. So it will probably be a while before this one's finished.

On the other hand, my ribbed scarf is coming on nicely. I've just finished my 3rd skein, and I reckon that one more should take it up to a good length for the finished article. I've been doing a lot more work recently on this one than my garter ridge scarf and I think the ribbed one will probably be done first (although the other is only about 3 pattern units away from the end too, so shouldn't take long to finish). There's two main reasons I can think of for this, with a possible third. First of all, although the ribbed scarf combined knits and purls in a single row (it is, after all, 2x2 rib on straight needles), rather than the same stitch for a whole row, each row is the same and therefore it's my preferred scarf to work on when I only have time for a couple of rows. Although I have a row counter to help with the other one, for some reason I prefer to work in whole or half blocks of the 16 row pattern. The second reason is that the yarn I'm using for the ribbed scarf is a lot nicer - both in colour (muted grey/blue with white, rather than sky blue) and texture (it's a wool/cotton/mohair blend instead of acrylic), and gives me more tactile pleasure to work it. Thirdly, I think I prefer the look of this pattern, especially the fact that it's reversible (useful for a scarf), which is another psychological reason for wanting to get on with this one when given a choice of the two.

I'm still putting off working on my heel, which is holding back attempts at making socks. I'm certainly not going to get any finished for this winter but I'm hoping to get some done by next year.
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