Monday, July 19, 2010

What I've Been Up To Lately

The stockinette will not end.

I had this ingenious idea: knit a summer top. In summer. And then, when the top was finished, I could wear it. Maybe even on my birthday!

I bought yarn. It was exciting. I cast on, I made half of a pretty yoke. Then I made the other half. Then I seamed them together at the shoulders, picked up stitches, started knitting, and began to make some real progress.

Eventually, I joined both the front and back of the sweater in the round. This was a huge deal, because it meant things would go so much faster--no purling, you see.

I was wrong.

Firstly, instead of just knitting every row all the time, Coral has a "false seam." This is accomplished by [here comes the knit-speak, skip ahead to * if you want it dumbed down] ssk, knitting until the center front stitch, m1r, knit center stitch, m1l, knit to the last two front stitches, and k2tog.

*The fake side seams are caused by knitting fancy, by making new stitches and getting rid of them, kind of an exercise in futility, since everything pretty much stays the same.

All that fanciness causes a V shape to emerge. But not on the back. So the length your sweater really is is the length the back is. The V is much longer, and eventually, you start to cast stitches off and, while doing so, you d-V the V, making the bottom a straight line.

I have finally reached that stage of the sweater.

But here's the thing. This is a really cool way to design a sweater--if it works.

And I'm not so confident in it's working.

I have this nightmare scenario in which the back of my sweater is way shorter than the front. Like someone would wear to show off some kind of elaborate lower-back tattoo. I have no tattoos. Also, I don't want any. So my sweater better be even.

However, knitting it without confidence in it's wearability makes me not so happy. With every stitch I think, "I'm going to have to rip all this back out..." And it makes me knit slowly...because the more I knit, the more I have to FROG.

I don't want to frog my knitting. Tearing out that many episodes of Veronica Mars would be a death-blow to my knitting confidence. Especially after the Extra Four Inches Incident and the What Is Up With This Collar Incident, each of which required my taking scissors to my own knitting, butchering it like some kind of sadistic serial killer.

Just as I was about to force myself to knit yet another row, a call went out through the Twitter-verse. Apparently, someone with my freakish deformity was needed!

Freakish deformity, you ask?

Narrow feet.

My feet are so skinny, I fall out of my shoes. Sideways. My feet are so skinny, I have to go DOWN a needle size (not up two) when I knit socks. My feet are so skinny, I have to get dress-shoes special ordered for me (this is why all my dressy shoes look like old lady orthopedics).

And my ankles are so skinny, it makes me look like I'm walking on stilts. It looks like they should shatter under the weight of my normal-sized body--Crunch! There go your ankles, Laura! See, they were supposed to grow WITH you, but no! Instead, they stayed the same size you were back in the fifth grade, before your growth spurt! Congratulations! Now you need us to rebuild them--it's a good thing you have insurance!

My weird ankles are the reason why my Walmart socks always fell down (unless I bought them from the little girls section). Maybe they are also the cause of my single-ness, the talking to myself in public thing, and even the falling down a lot thing. Heck--let's blame my lower half for all my problems. That will make life more fun for me, because I'll be off the hook. Can't understand algebra, Laura? It's okay! Your feet are cursed; it isn't your fault!

That was fun. But I know better. Bad fairies all the way. They cause tooth decay, so they're bound to be up to something in between dental visits.**

Long story short, (I know--too late, right?) I have begun test-knitting another pair of socks.

Finally, my freakishness pays off by awarding me the long-hoped-for excuse to not finish my "birthday sweater" before my birthday (not this Tuesday, but next Tuesday--and I like yarn, if you were wondering...Come on. I had to try). And it also gives me something to do with the Pagewood Farms yarn I picked up a couple months ago. It didn't like the other patterns I tried to use it with, but it's taken to this one like a dream.

Last night I watched Poirot and knit a full four inches during The Third Girl alone (you can watch it on PBS for the next couple of weeks if you missed out). Today I'm hoping to get to the heel turn, and I think I can make it if my insomnia doesn't decide to spontaneously vanish.

**I threw that in for those of you who, like me, enjoyed watching The Tenth Kingdom. If you missed it, that joke won't make sense and will instead make me seem like a tree-worshiping new-ager. I hug trees. But I don't worship them. And you'd hug them too if they kept you from falling face-first into the river.

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