Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Quilt Gift - Finally Posted!

In all the craziness preceding our recent vacation out to Idaho I was unable to find any time to post about a wonderful gift I recently received. Now we are back (I miss you Idaho!) and everything is still crazy, but I have to show you all this quilt that my very best quilt buddy made me for a wedding gift. (Jay keeps correcting me that she made it for US, but I have been under it pretty much non-stop since it arrived at our house a couple weeks ago). Melissa has blogged about it here, so I will just show some pictures and say again thank you Mel, you're the best and we love it!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Frustrated But Triumphant!

The socks I'm knitting for my first born are proving to be quite the challenge. First there was the issue with knitting the beginning of the heel inside out. That was last weekend and I ripped back several rows and fixed it and moved on, even though I ended up with some twisted stitches from my "fixing".

Oh well, I thought, if that's the worst that happens then they are still awesome socks. Well, today I managed to really screw them up. I worked on them all morning and afternoon and was thrilled to get the heel turned. Then things began to go bad. Very bad. First of all, the pattern wanted me to pick up 15 stitches along the gusset, but there just weren't 15 to grab. I forced 13 and moved on. Then, the pattern tells you to knit round one of two rounds from then on. Well, like most simple sock patterns the part on top of your foot is ribbed and if you are knitting a whole round every other round then you are ruining the ribbing that IS there in the second round. Does that make sense? Well, I've only been knitting for about a year, so I trusted in the pattern, plus I was already feeling queasy about not following the number of gusset stitches to pick up. I should have followed my instinct, the pattern is wrong (or at least wrong for how I want my socks to look, who am I to judge wonky ribbing?).

To top it all off, somewhere along the way I managed to get a hole. Yes, an f-ing hole.

By this point these socks had my original twisted stitches, messed up ribbing and an f-ing hole. I was ready to scrap the whole thing. My fingers were twitching to start ripping out rows, but I put it down and walked away for a while. After completely snapping at Jay when he walked by the sock lying on the table and had the nerve to say "the sock is looking great" (sorry honey, was a very bad knitting moment), I eventually calmed down and started to think about the problems.

I remembered my very first sock knitting class when I had done some stitches backwards and one of the shop ladies, Jenna (a knitting saint really), took my knitting and fixed the stitches in about 30 seconds without unknitting anything. I was awed and in no way understood what she had done, I just continued happily with fixed knitting. However, it had made quite an impression. On a whim I searched for "fixing mistakes" and actually came across just the video I needed to do exactly what Jenna had done that day. After watching the video about eight times and taking a very deep breath, I dropped stitches down to the first wrong one and wove them back in correctly. Then I did it six more times. By the last one I was feeling like the smartest knitter in the universe. And apparently, the hole was a dropped stitch that I fixed in just the same way, thanks to another video that identified the problem. Look, NO HOLE!!!

Now I am back to having socks that only have a few twisted stitches, and THAT I can still live with. I really want to go hunt down the ladies and hug each and every one of them. That site has saved my knitting ass on numerous occasions. On with the socks, hopefully the knitting gods will cut me a bit of slack now that I have taken the time to actually learn how to fix some common knitting mistakes!