My Knitting Trials

June 24, 2002 The Start of It I bought knitting kneedles and fuzzy yarn today. I decided to knit a scarf for my niece in her school colors and I'm going to give it to her for her September birthday so she can get some use out of it during the football season. I hope it works out and I hope she likes it! Of course, this is a premature hope...I still have to make the thing. I've been looking for a web site that really start me out and I think that About's Beginner Site will do the trick.

Aug. 11, 2002

Knitting Maven. Not yet. Knitting Chicken is more like it. I mentioned in June that I was going to make a fuzzy scarf like not martha. I had a rough start. I found the fuzzy yarn I wanted to use, I bought blue and white, my niece's school colors. I bought knitting kneedles, two of them -- see, I know something about knitting. I've been careful to keep my yarn and kneedles up far away from Riso the mega mouth. However, I ran into some trouble right away.

First, I assumed that a skein of yarn has to be all balled up so I took the skein of blue yarn, found an end and started rolling. Then, I dropped it, at least four times. I don't know if anybody else has ever experienced this or not, but yarn doesn't like to get dropped over and over because in a fatal effort of revenge, it knots up, especially fuzzy yarn. It took me ten long hours, but I did manage to ball up the skein...into four small balls.

That was about three weeks ago. Now I'm looking at less than one month to go before my niece's birthday and I have only four small balls of blue fuzzy yarn and one unballed skein of white fuzzy yarn and two unused knitting kneedles. I'm afraid to ball up the white fuzzy yarn. I admit it and I am ashamed. But, ball it I must and then I'll face the task that frightened me at the outset, that of casting on. My guess is that nothing will be as difficult as balling this nasty fuzzy yarn. I will persevere, I will overcome this fear, I will win!

Please wish me luck and think happy thoughts for me.

Aug. 21, 2002

Knitting Hysterics. (Hysterics as in hysterical not in comical) I'm trying. I'm really trying. Way way back in June, I decided that I wanted to make a fuzzy scarf for my niece for her September 9th birthday.

First, it is important to note that I know nothing about knitting. This is my first project. I am as neophytish as one gets. Brand new, never done that before. Second, it is very important to give me the benefit of the doubt. I am not a participant in the Special Olympics nor have I suffered from a major brain trauma. This is getting me close to such a disaster, but as of yet, I have a fine fully functioning brain inside of this thickish skull.

Earlier this month, I wrote about the joy of fuzzy yarn balling. Last night I finally summoned up the courage to ball up the white fuzzy yarn. I took special care to lay out the skein so that it was a large loopy circle. I carefully fingered out the strands and felt certain that this was a good sign. I found the factory determined end and with a heart filled with hope, began balling in earnest.

Nasty MorassWhen my ball was about the size of an apricot, I encountered my first knot. Breathing slowly and moving carefully, I manipulated my apricot ball through the morass and continued balling. I managed five or six more wraps of yarn and found the next knot and so it went until I reached a point where there was no way out. It was like a friggin' yarn maze and I'd reached the center.

Instead of cutting the yarn like before, I carefully laid it out, took this picture and poured myself a glass of merlot. I sat on the sofa next to it and watched it with a wary eye, just like I'm sure Albert Einstein sat aside and thought his way through his mathmetical challenges. I sipped my melot, watched the rat's nest and sipped some more. When the glass was empty, I filled it again and continued my vigil.

When I finally went to bed, the fuzzy white yarn remained as before but I had had enough wine to not really care that much about it. However, this morning there it remained and there it still sits.

I'm beginning to think that my niece would look rather grand in a nice reindeer parka.

Sept 7, 2002

Il est fini! This is too monumental a moment to use just plain English. It is finished, complete, done. The fuzzy scarf had it's final stitch cast off at 11:30pm last night! It is not going to win any awards and I think it still needs to have some mysterious process called blocking done to it, but it is as long as it needs to be and just right for Rej in Fuzzy Scarfa winter that rarely dips below 50. To the right, my lovely model, Rej, examines it for uniformity of stitches.

To me, it looks very much like my inspiration, not martha's first knitting project, which pleases me because I really liked that red and white version.

Here's where I get to sound like a real knitter. (Big goofy smile on my face):

With the guidance of the saleswoman at Canvas Works, a local yarn shop here in Olympia, I bought a pair 10" long 9mm INOX knitting kneedles. Now that I'm such an expert, I can say, that I didn't really like these kneedles because the plastic felt kind of icky after a while and the little knobby plastic things on the end that keep the stitches from dropping off the edge of the world, kept slipping off and no amount of super glue would keep them stuck.

I bought just two skeins of some sort of acrylic fuzzy yarn. The saleswoman felt that that amount would be sufficient. During the fits I had balling it Fuzzy Scarf from the backup, I was both glad I had no more to worry about and worried that with all my cutting out the knots that I might not have enough. It was a terrible time, that balling.

I messed around and figured out how to cast on the stitches and decided like not martha to cast on 30 stitches. I began to knit away then pulled it out and started over and pulled it out and started over again then pulled it out and started over and pulled it out and started over again.

I couldn't see the rows well enough to count them so I measured the length of my rows using my fingers. As it turns out, this is not the most accurate method and ended up giving me a variety of I decided to just go with that. When I got to half way, I just mirrored the first half but used opposite colors. It didn't look bad and if anybody asks my niece she can just tell them it's art. That's my excuse for most of my creations.

So, that's that. It's about 8 feet long and not so bulky that if she wants to wrap it around her neck a few times, it won't choke her. I didn't add fringe to it, but instead sent the left over tiny balls to her. If she wants this feature, Grandma Betty can add it. I am happy enough with my first project. Thanks to Eliz and Sue for their support!!!

I will knit again.

All contents copyright 2002, as IF...