Late to Cinderella’s party

The fall Knitty was released the other day – I think everyone else has already posted about it? Kathryn designed these super cool two-needle socks that require worsted-weight yarn and are a fairly quick knit. And they have a lot of visual appeal. You definitely won’t be bored knitting these gems.

(Full disclosure: Kathryn may have recruited me to take the photos…if you visit the link, you’ll see a photo of her at the bottom of the page hugging one of her newly acquired Shetland sheep, Wally! *Sigh* I just love Wally.)

I really am enjoying all the patterns in this issue. Emilee has produced these lovely leaf motif hats called Foliage. And Anne of Knitspot entertains us with this gorgeous throw: Totally Autumn.

I love Nancy Marchant‘s colorwork in the Pecan Pie hat, as well as the 3-D effect of the colorwork in Aija Goto‘s knee-high socks, called Q.

Man – I really have to get back in the game.

Zag

I am moving. It seems to be taking forever. It is actually taking forever. Back in August, I had a house/cat-sitting job. Then I was going away in September, so the people living in the house said you can stay if you don’t have a lease yet. So I didn’t sign a lease. I went to Turkey, came back for 5 days, then went to DR Congo this month. Now I have finally signed a lease, but it’s been three months and my belongings have been stored or scattered.

Things were looking up, though. I moved one carload into the apartment the other day after returning from SAFF. Wednesday I will have the UHAUL truck to get the furniture moved in – although I have yet to recruit someone to help…

But in all this shifting around, it is difficult to keep track of anything. Today, that means that although I finished a pair of socks for Socktober, I can’t post the photo, because WHERE IS THE SECOND SOCK???

In lieu of that, and in light of my Jaywalker disaster, I bring you the Jaywalker-inspired Zag:

Pattern forthcoming.

Mariniere a Torsade

Remember I was knitting that garter stitch sweater for Amber’s friend’s new baby twin girl? Well, I haven’t finished yet, although I’ve got the front and back nearly done. I had to put it down because small circular needles (16″ in US5) were giving me hand cramps. The yarn is enjoyable, the design is somewhat mindless. But I put it down a week ago or so and I haven’t worked on it since.

On the baby front in general, though, I seem to be on a roll after a series of false starts. Back in December, I bought some wonderful orange Jaeger Matchmaker Merino for Bean, a.k.a. Mateo, who hadn’t yet arrived. Then I realized that Mateo lived in Tanzania and probably didn’t need a wool sweater. Not to mention that I had left my FAVORITE BABY PATTERN BOOK at Amber’s house and couldn’t finish the sweater if I’d wanted to.

But two weekends ago, I recuped the book with one of my favorite patterns:

bebes torsade

I bought the book at Le Bon Marche two Christmases ago when I had a layover in Paris. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make it to the original location of La Droguerie, but the department store had a luscious selection of ribbons, beads, notions and kits, as well as this book, which I will never give up.

Last weekend, I went with some fellow obsessed knitters to Cozy and found two skeins of ivory Cascade Sierra, which is mostly cotton AND machine washable, and hoped that it would make a sweater big enough for a 5- or 6-month old Mateo. I mean, the kid needs a sweater, does he not?

La Droguerie sells their own yarn, and in grams, so the only way to guess the weight is by the needle size. I also realized that the directions do not include gauge.

[This lists yarn in grams; type of buttons required; stitches used in the design; and needle sizes.]

So the only way to figure the gauge (other than my usual method of ‘guesstimating,’ which I might add is an American idiomatic expression that was used by one of my higher-ups on a conference call with our Congolese collaborators, and I’m not certain that it translated very well) is to take the measurements and compare with number of stitches cast on.

I guesstimated.

It seems to be going fine in the end. I sized down to 4.5mm needles rather than 5.0, and this is what I have so far – le front, le back, la torsade, and cast on sleeves.


I decided to do the sleeves at the same time, even though in the past, when I was working on this sweater (that no longer exists because it became my Knitting Olympics project), I kept forgetting in which direction I was knitting, and I ended up with one sleeve several inches longer than the other one.

This time, though, I have two perfect sleeves! (Photos next time…)

This sweater just flew off the needles. It was so easy, there were no problems, and this weekend I plan to piece it together and find some buttons. All that will remain is knitting the neck edging, and then finding that Tanzania address…

Here’s a question for designers and knitters

The question actually has several parts.

1a. If you were knitting a specific pattern stitch, would you rather knit it from a chart or from written-out instructions?

1b. If you were designing a pattern stitch, would you write it out or chart it or both?

1c. If you were publishing a pattern stitch and you were writing and charting it, would you chart it so that right side and wrong side rows alternated?

[Here is an example: stockinette. Row 1 = knit. Row 2 = purl, if you’re knitting flat and had to turn it around to the wrong side. Row 3 = knit, Row 4 = purl, etc. Thus the chart would look like this if k = knit and p = purl and we are knitting from bottom right corner:]

pppppppppp
kkkkkkkkkkk
pppppppppp
kkkkkkkkkkk

Here is what happened. I was knitting my Trekking sock from the work basket, and I was super excited to get past that twisted stitch rib that was so time consuming, and I wanted to incorporate this pattern – sorry, repeat photos:

sock lace

You can see that the triangles are either reverse stockinette or ribbed, which ought to be represented, triangles aside, as:

RIB
* = k on RS, p on WS
o = p on RS, k on WS

*O*O*O*
*O*O*O*
*O*O*O*
*O*O*O*

REVERSE STST
o = p on RS, k on WS

oooooo
oooooo
oooooo
oooooo

Right? Are you still with me?

But they were represented differently from what I am accustomed to:

RIB
kpkpkpk
pkpkpkp
kpkpkpk
pkpkpkp

REVERSE STST

kkkkkkk
ppppppp
kkkkkkk
ppppppp

And unfortunately I was so frustrated when I realized my mistake that I immediately unraveled!!!! so you can’t see that I ended up with garter stitch and seed stitch triangles?!?! rather than rib and reverse stst.

I am sure that in the introduction to the book indicated that all charts were intended to represent flat pieces, but tell me if I’m crazy when I expect the chart to represent the front side of the design, the piece that was photographed??

Bellflowers came from the same book, I’ll have to see if I can decipher the chart.