pondering knitting

Me and knitting have reached a weird point in our relationship. I have a couple of UFOs that I just don’t feel like working on at the moment, about half of the projects in my Ravelry queue are pullover sweaters (which are obviously out for now), and I’m not really sure what to do next.

So I recently swatched for a cardigan that I already bought yarn for, the Rocky Coast from the Coastal Knits book. Amazingly, the gauge actually worked on the first try! But I wonder if the yarn/needle combination makes it look too loose of a knit. The trials of almost always having to substitute the suggested yarn, I suppose. I may go ahead and start this one anyway, because it has enough cotton in the yarn that washing could tighten it up. And knowing me, by the time I finish knitting this, it’ll be just in time for fall 2016 and my body will probably be at its new normal anyway.

I also had this random single ball of yarn that I bought at the beach shop a couple of years ago, and I figured a bulky yarn would knit up fast and get out of my stash. I wanted to take advantage of the yarn’s ability to change textures–it kind of knits up like a t-shirt yarn, but can open up to more of a lacy mesh. And I haven’t been able to find any patterns I liked for the amount that I had, so I attempted to design my own cowl pattern. The pattern itself worked fine–it’s a combination between a moss stitch, to show the closed texture, and a drop-stitch to hopefully allow part of the yarn to open up. I think I’d have to block this to make that happen. The problem is, I only had enough yarn to do three repeats of the pattern before I had to bind it off, which makes for a very narrow cowl! So I’ve had this sitting on my table for something like a week, trying to decide if I should go ahead and block it and see what happens, or to unravel it and try to come up with a different project. Any thoughts?

Either way, I’m feeling kind of mental blocked on anything yarny until I make decisions about what to do about these two projects. So in the meantime, I’ve been tracing out patterns that I was given for Christmas for geeky baby quiet books instead.

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9 thoughts on “pondering knitting

  1. Do you block your swatches? If not, I might try blocking the Rocky Coast swatch just to see what the cotton does. And if it was me, I would probably block the cowl to see what happens with it, then you can decide if you want to frog it or not. 🙂

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  2. Knitting is always love-hate for me. It's such a big time investment, but the final product is always kind of a crap shoot. I got about 1/3 of the way done with one sweater when I realized I hated it and it would never look good on me, and now I'm dying to try a different one rather than finishing up one of the projects I already have. :-/ I like how the yellow swatch looks, though, I think that'll work up nicely!

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  3. I usually don't, because I like to have the yarn for later just in case I did the math wrong on my yarn swap yardages. (Also, I think I already unraveled this one before I posted this. Oops.)

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  4. I've had those issues before, too– including the one time I could use the yarn called for, I realized the style was all wrong for me after multiple failed attempts to add some shaping. Ugh.

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  5. I second the suggestion to block your swatches for now on. Treat it exactly how you would treat the sweater – if it has cotton content, this is doubly important because it tends to shrink, and you want to know in advance if your sweater is going to change sizes – right gauge unwashed doesn't mean right gauge after washing! (Ask me how I know!) Better to know in advance, and washing/blocking will even out the stitches.

    And you know, you can still use the yarn from the swatch if you need it, even if you've already washed/blocked it! It might have a different texture when you first use it, but it'll all even out once the whole sweater is washed afterward!

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  6. Maybe I'll re-knit the swatch so I can try that again– since I really am limited in the fibers I can use, and I often have to add length for my arms anyway, you do have a point! It's good to know that I can still knit with the yarn post-blocking. Thanks for the advice!

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