Monday, February 9, 2009

La Digitessa, Laura's Bane

I don't know what the heck is the matter with me.

I have been knitting this pattern, ripping it back, knitting some more, ripping it back, switching yarns, ripping, knitting, ripping, knitting--you get the picture. I have been doing this systematicly, observing what my issue was and taking notes in order to prevent a repeat of the disaster. I finally thought, as I mentioned in earlier posts, that I had figured out my problem.

I hadn't.

You see, when the knitting gets to a specific point (the end of the gusset) there is no mention for what row of the main cable pattern one should be on. In fact, there is no mention of what row one should be on before starting the gusset. The side, lesser cables that evolve to become the gusset should be on the fourth row, but other than that? Nothing.

I had in the past had problems ending up on the right row of the lesser cables because I had never knit a toe-up sock and was making the same newbie mistake again and again, causing me to laugh and tear out the gusset. However, I was sure that once I had conquered this mistake, I would have been able to knit until the end of the sock, the cuff, without much trouble.

However, I realized that even though I was on the "right" row all the way up to the end of the gusset (on the main cable pattern) I had big problems when knitting chart 6, the front of the leg. This section has a section of travelling stitches that wrap from the gusset, crossing in the back, around to the front where it meets in the middle of the front, bringing an end to the main cable pattern.

I would give you pictures, but I don't have a nice, completed sock. I have a pile of frogged yarn (again) all crinkly on my floor.

I do not suck as a knitter. I am an awesome knitter. I have knit fancy lace. I have knit complicated cables. I have knit sweaters, socks (more than I will admit), gloves, mittens, scarves, hats, microbes, whistle cases, i-pod sleeves, cell phone cases, purses, and fungus. I have knit it all, designed a bunch, and I have never had problems like this.

That is because I am reasonably smart. I know how to figure out a knitting pattern and I know how to say to myself: "this isn't me, maybe there is a pattern error." And when I say that, I jump online and check it out. That lets me fix the issues I have, like with my cardigan (I love my cardigan) that had an issue with its pattern. It wasn't me. And even the patterns of some of my socks, most of which I caught and corrected by myself. I am Smart.

Several weeks ago, when I ran into this Chart 6 pattern problem for the first time, I went online and checked for errors. There were none. I am Dumb.

I am Very Dumb, because when most people would go for help, ask questions, post a topic on Ravelry...and I didn't. Instead, I switched yarn so I could figure it out myself without causing permanent damage to the sock yarn I care about. I can waste the bad yarn and work on the good yarn when I had it figured out. Good idea, yeah. But I was still Supremely Dumb because even as I read the pattern for the billionth time, I failed to recognize my problem, which is a big one.

Now as I sit in the mass of frogged yarn, I realize the error of my ways as I consider counting back rows so that I end up on the right repeat for sure. That is Galactically Dumb. The kind of Dumb that leads to a girl getting caught in a garage door in the Scream movies (Which were bad, especially because they led the way to the Serial Killer Training Videos we see advertised every day).

I am checking Ravelry again. Not for errors, but to check and see if someone has posted a "Hey, just in case you want to know, I was on Row X of Chart Y when I started the gusset!"

I won't find that.

When I have finally fixed my issues, I will frame the solitary sock I have knit out of The Crap Yarn that has lived in my drawer that holds the random bits of yarn. It was the only skein big enough to knit from that I had never worked with. I hate this yarn, it feels like sandpaper. But it will not tear the skin from my legs if it is framed above my bed where I can look at it and smile, knowing I have conquered this pattern. I will conquer this pattern.

In case you want to see the sock, you may take a peek at it here.

I am concentrating on not going insane. I am focused on that singular goal. I affirm that having a problem with a pattern does NOT make me a bad knitter. And even if I were a bad knitter, that would not reflect on me. I can be a good person and a bad knitter at the same time. That wouldn't matter to me, though. Because I am still a good knitter.

This is a challenging pattern.

It says so in the instructions.

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