twist and shout

Because I just never shut up

Rippety-Doo-Da, Rippety-ay! February 15, 2010

Filed under: knitting,life — kathy @ 2:54 pm

What is it about ripping out a lousy project that has always frustrated me so?    

Even the yarn is making a Sad Face


Perhaps it’s the thought that I was wrong. Wrong about the yarn, wrong about the needle size, wrong about the project size. That’s part of it, I guess. Nobody likes being wrong.    

But what is the most grating to me is not that I was wrong; I think it bothers me because I feel like I just wasted a number of hours on something that I will not be able to use until I spend more hours on it or on something entirely different.    

Case in point: the Victorian Neck Cozy. It was lovely and romantic– something to make me feel again like a delicate maiden, showing off my longish neck. Instead, after 16 rows of pattern, not including the false start on even larger needles, I thought this puppy looked, well, large. I pulled it on and realized it was not merely large. It might even be a bit large on Shrek. I’d ripped half out before I stopped and took a quick pic. Sad.    

Worse, I’d optimistically signed up with this project for the Yarn Harlot’s 2010 Knitting Olympics     

I thought: “Here’s a perfect excuse to put aside some of the other things I’ve been slogging through, as well as finally get my hands on that Malabrigo Silky Merino in Indecita I splurged on last summer.” Love this yarn! Oh well. It just didn’t work. The yarn just didn’t want to be a Victorian Neck Cozy.    

On the other hand, why get hung up on it? It’s better to rip it now, than to be in denial for the next 2 weeks or so, only to find it didn’t fit then and it would be an embarassment to wear.    

Anyway, after lots of researching (thank you, Ravelry), talking (thank you, Darling Cuz), and asking the yarn what it wanted to be, I decided I’m going to transform this glorious fiber into a “Shetland Triangle,” or possibly another favorite shawl, the Forest Canopy. I gave away each of  my 2 Forest Canopy shawls and frankly would like one of my very own. I was thinking of doing an “Ishbel,” because my Darling Cuz was raving about it, and I always like what she makes. However, the very first  3 lines of the pattern sent me into a tailspin: “Cast on 3 stitches. Knit 6 rows. Pick up 3 stitches of garter stitch, then 3 stitches from cast on edge.” HUH?    

Just couldn’t wrap my head around that. Why would you do that? What would that look like? And I couldn’t reach the Cuz to ask, since hers is finished, though I’m sure there are also others of you out there who also understand those instructions. Just not me. If so, please be so kind to enlighten me.      

Ah well. I’m excited to start that Shetland Triangle.    

Simple Things in Handmaiden Casbah--Yum. Simply, wonderfully mindless!


Also chugging along on my “Simply Luscious” Simple Things Shawlette/Scarf, and still working on the “Lion Neck Cardigan,” and with Stitches West in less than 2 weeks, I’d better make a dent in my stash so I can fit in a few skeins of this and that here and there.    

That Stash. Boy oh boy. You know, as far as stashes go, this one is about average in size.  Trust me, I’ve seen larger.    

Even so, last Wednesday I found myself  wildly digging through it to find the skeins of Dream in Color Classy I succumbed to at Purlescence’s “Jammie Jam Day after Thanksgiving” yarn sale. Did I have enough to make myself the Feb Lady Sweater? Did I buy 4 (not enough)skeins, or 5 (just barely enough)? It took me all day, going into my bins and baskets multiple times (no easy feat considering a 6 foot tall framed print is standing against the door of the guest room yarn closet and the rest of the room is piled high with delicate objects such as lamps).    

I really am very organized...


By 3 pm, an hour after I’d admitted defeat, I came back to my senses. No pile of wool was gonna get the best of my dusty brain. I made a cup of chamomile tea and thunk. (Yes, I thunk. Like Winnie the Pooh) Lots of things got thunk, but at last  I had  a vague memory of cleverly shoving the yarn I got at the sale into an empty suitcase that also lives in the yarn closet (at least I thought it was a clever place to stash it at the time–I wish I would’ve written myself a note to that end–I can’t even count how many hot flashes I had looking for that yarn). Bingo. And happily I now know I have just barely enough yarn. Goody.    

...and there really isn't all that much.


One thing is certain after all that searching and sweating: I will be very careful to limit my Stitches West fiber purchases to single skeins of sock yarns and a skein or two of lace yarn, although I clearly don’t need more of either, and I certainly don’t have many places left to put them.    

Enough said.    

Also thinking of planning my summer trip to coincide with this:  Anyone wanna come with me?  

On the Remodel Front: Our kitchen is a maze of gorgeous cabinets stacked one on top of the other, all which will be installed in their proper places tomorrow. I’m so excited!!    

Except this thing is filled with sock yarn. (tee hee)



5 Responses to “Rippety-Doo-Da, Rippety-ay!”

  1. Darling Cuz Says:

    AAArrgghhhh! Curse you, oh project in the round that expands and contracts when you aren’t looking!!! There is nothing to protect you from this but completely random luck. Oh, and maybe, always knit the smallest size, or the smallest needle. I don’t even think a gauge swatch helps.

    Ok — seriously, on the fiber and folk? Why in the world didn’t I go last year? I was at Esther’s Place and they were talking about it and I was just NOT thinking properly. So, yes, we’re there.

    The Ishbel. It is confusing as written — this is when I just blindly follow the pattern and don’t try to think too much! Also I think there’s lots of ways to start these — (Forest Canopy is much simpler) To start, you’re basically making a 1″ x 2 ” garter stitch rectangle. You knit your last row of that (6 rows), don’t turn your work, go down the side and pick up stitches, keep going around, pick up the stitches on the bottom of the rectangle. The un-picked-up side becomes the top of your shawl — a couple of ridges across or so (it starts at the top and grows outward and down). DOes that make sense?


    • kathy Says:

      Thank you for your comments, dahlink~
      I get it a bit more, but I still think I might need some visual aids…I think I’m hopeless sometimes. What exactly is the point of that kind of start, I wonder? Stretchiness? Or perhaps it’s Ysolda’s way of saying “Na na, I can knit better than you can.”


      • Darling Cuz Says:

        lol! Not sure why some are more complicated than others. This is the Luna Moth shawl beginning:”Shawl begins at the center back using provisional cast on. With contrast color scrap yarn and crochet hook, chain 6. With shawl yarn pick up and knit 3 sts in the bumps on the back side of the center 3 chains – 3 sts. Knit 18 rows. Next row, K3, pick up and knit 1 st in each of the 9 garter ridges along selvedge edge of piece, unzip scrap yarn chain to expose 3 sts at base of the piece, place these 3 sts onto left needle, K3. (15 sts total)” How’s that for complicated?Both this and Ishbel seem to have (need?) more of a base to start — 9 stitches, 15 stitches, whatever. Something to investigate…PS erase this if you want; not sure which email of yours to use or I wouldn’t post here!

        Cards & Log-ins

        Cards & Log-ins

        Cards & Log-ins


  2. Meg Says:

    Pooey on the Victorian Neck Cozy. I hope you pick it up and try again some other time. Clearly … you have no shortage of yarns and projects as alternatives. 😉

    By the way, sweetie, where did you get that darling project bag? And do I see the same material hidden in your fabric stash (which I am eyeing enviously!). Did I see that pretty bag when you were visiting over Christmas? Because I have the funniest thing to tell you: I bought that EXACT fabric specifically to make YOU a project bag! Either I subconsciously remembered (and subsequently forgot, although how could I forget THAT striking pattern?) that fabric, or I’ve got you pegged, missy. If it’s the latter, it warms me to know I know something of your taste even though we’ve lived in separate states for nigh on 20 years or more. If it’s the former, then my mind is going and if you’ll excuse me I need to go after it.


  3. Meg Says:

    Oh yes, and I’d love to meet you two at Fiber and Folk! Which is perilously close (or closer than where you are when you visit) to … The Renaissance Faire!


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