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Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Trouble with Knitting...

I'm sure all you knitters out there know the importance of pattern choice and tension squares.

A few months ago I purchased some of Spotlight's wool - it was going out on sale.  It is a 4 ply, 75% wool, 25% polyester.  In 100 gm balls:

It is a variegated yarn in shades of grey through to black.  I chose a plain jumper, checked the tension, and, as the tension was fine, started knitting the back.

I finished knitting the back.  And I did not like it.  I did not like the shape, or the way the variations lay in weird (to my way of thinking) stripes.

So I undid the back.

As anything made in this wool would give me the weird stripes, I had to decide what to do.

I decided to knit two balls together, as I thought this would eliminate the (weird) stripes.

I chose a pattern, and knitted a tension square.

The tension was wrong.  I changed needles and knitted another tension square.  The tension was still wrong.  I changed needles and knitted another tension square.  THE TENSION WAS STILL WRONG.

By now I was getting fed up.  So I changed patterns.

And knitted ANOTHER tension square.

The tension was right (well, near enough, which is right in my book, especially after all this tension square knitting!).

I discovered that knitting from two balls at once created problems - both balls getting tangled on each other, or jumping out of the knitting basket.

So I wound two balls together:


And all this before I even started the garment (and you non knitters thought muslins were tedious!)

Then I started.  I rather like the fabric this yarn is making:



The pattern I am using is a relaxed blazer cardigan:

It only comes in Small (too small) Medium (too big) or Large (far too large).  I settled on Medium in the end, as I am making this in wool, not cotton as the pattern specified.  It's likely I will be wearing it over another jumper, so I thought bigger would be better.  I'll find out in due course (like in six months time) whether I made the right decision.

The pattern came from FILATI pocket, issue 2.  I haven't seen this magazine again, but loved a lot of the garments in this little book.

Knitting might be fun, but like sewing, it has it's frustrating moments :)  .  And still we come back for more :)

Enjoy your sewing  (or knitting, or crafting) time,

Sarah Liz




16 comments:

  1. That weird stripy behavior put me off variegated yarn back in the eighties. I swore I would never let it near my needles again. Guess what I'm working on today? Right! Nice cardigan!

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    1. Oh, that's so funny :) I did the same thing back in the 80's! I do hope your project works out nicely.

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  2. So many tension squares, but it's great that you are persisting with it. The design you have happening now is totally gorgeous, I think!

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    1. Thanks Carolyn - I sort of got determined that I was going to make something nice out of this yarn :)

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  3. I like the fabric that you are ending up with...after a lot of trial and error! Can't wait to see the finished garment, great pattern :-)

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    1. Thank you - and yes,T & E is what it is about sometimes :)

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  4. Love the yarn pattern you've come up with and I Love the cardi pattern you've chosen! Thank you for sharing some of the frustrations you've dealt with on this project. You make me feel more on the 'normal' scale as it seems there's 'always something' whether knitting (or sewing). Looking forward to seeing it complete!

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    1. Thank you Lisa -and, rest assured, if you grapple with something and have lots of little sewing frustrations, you are very normal :) We all do :)

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  5. I'd love to see your finished garment. I am sure it will be very pretty :)

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  6. I like your combined yarn and I know I have kept away from variegated yarn for that very reason. Like the look of your cardigan/jacket pattern.

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    1. Thank you Sharon - I admit, I should have known better, but I think I will get something nice out of this :)

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  7. Hilarious post! Just when I was thinking of jumping into knitting - LOL!
    Gorgeous pattern, by the way...
    :-)

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    1. Chris, you must join the fun - all that counting of rows, dropping stitches - a whole exciting world awaits...(said tongue in cheek) :)

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  8. Your sweater is going to be beautiful.. I never learned to knit..

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