Tuesday, February 26, 2013

I Like to Knit

Ok, so that sounds like a statement of the very obvious. But I have become aware of the fact in new ways recently.

First, I present my "Lacy Underthing," an undershirt with lace details knit in a brown alpaca yarn:
Progress is being made at a satisfactory rate, and besides thinking it will be a little looser than originally planned, I think it will fit well enough. (Although I'm slightly concerned by the comment a fellow knitter said about alpaca not holding its shape like wool does. We'll see!) But it occurred to me at some point that there's a reason they make lacy underthings in white. (Besides the whole virginal thing.) You can see the lace in white. In this brown, it's going to be a very nearly indiscernible detail. But I still want to knit it. I simply like the process of knitting it.

Detail of neck crossover. (Picture is overexposed so you
can see a little of the lace!)
Let me say as an aside that one rookie mistake is to knit something in black yarn completely unaware that it will make the cables/lace/texture you're working so hard on completely undetectable. (I'd show you a picture of my black cabled cropped sweater from the 80s, but what's the point--you'd just see a black blob!)

This is not a case of that. I want to knit this, I know the dark brown colour doesn't highlight the lace, and really I don't even really care if the lace is clearly discernible for all to see. And that is not at all to say that I don't care how it looks, because believe me, I am still fixing mistakes whenever they occur.

Detail of vertical "stripe" pattern on back and lower front.
It just really struck me that I could be knitting this blind and never get to see how it looks and I would still want to knit it just to be knitting it. The whole world could be blind and I would enjoy knitting it. That's what I mean when I say I like to knit.
The other project that proved to me that I like to knit are these socks I've been working on. I've been doing them two-at-a-time (TAAT) and although 48 stitches worked for previous socks, it turned out to be too narrow for this pair.

Although the evidence was there fairly early on, since I could actually fit my foot into the sock, I kept going. Knitting...I like to knit. I don't like to stop and think and evaluate and measure. Just knit, knit, knit. And that is what I did until I was done the heel:
See? It fits! Well, sort of...
My foot is in the sock on the left. Can you see how much
the stitches are pulling side to side? Way too much
stretch for a comfortable fit.
When I finally stopped knitting long enough to consider how it was fitting I had to admit it kind of pinched...a lot. Part of the problem was that I wanted to see how the heel would come out. (Isn't that silly? I knew I would have to rip it out, but I still wanted to finish the heel first.) So when the heel was done, I tried the sock on again and had to admit--too small! Why was I going on? Because I like to knit. Sometimes to the denial that I would do better to get something useful out of it.

So I ripped it out. This should be a good thing--this means I get more knitting! (Ripping out means great value for your dollar because you get to knit the same yarn several times. Ha ha.) (BTW, I don't suggest making that joke to a knitter who is currently ripping out a project. It's not so funny then. If you go ahead with the joke because you are full of bravado, then please wear eye protection. Knitters always have pointed sticks handy, and I'd hate for you to be the blind person who couldn't see my brown lace.)

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