A chick who goes on and on about knitting, designing knitting, crazy musings, shoes, family, and other stuff that pops into my too full head.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

The TOO-BIG Sweater part II

I thought I'd show you a little more of the crazy journey that is my Norweigan sweater.

This is the sweater that started it all. I looked and looked for a pattern to go off of, but there were none to be found that matched it. I said in the last post, I bought the sweater and copied it...

...on graph hand...x by little x...all night long...It was almost meditative...and very obsessive.

Then I took a class on two colored continental knitting at the 2001 Minnesota Knitter's Guild Yarn Over and learned to carry both colors in my left hand whilst picking the stitches. This was invaluable technique that made knitting my sweater not only sanely possible, it made it much faster than it would have gone had I been throwing the colors one at a time.

Next came the "making it my size" thing. I measured and swatched and measured again. I RE-CHARTED the sweater to my specifications in the new color I chose to go better with my bronze hair. More little x's...there are also charts for the sleeves and button bands and other bits.

Here is part of the chart for the words I knit in. It had to be knit upside-down and backwards on the hem facing.

I love those words, although today I would choose different words, but that is what life does to us, it changes us and moves us to a different place. Different place = different words.

So...Am I changed so much that fixing the sweater size would not satisfy me now? Or am I so changed that I'd prefer a RED sweater now? My hair certainly is. Do I chalk this up to experience? I can look at each item I've knitted as a stop on my journey. Do I want to go back to that harbor and re-live frustration? Or shall I love it as it is, move on to my next destination?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Avoidance Behavior or Everything in it's own Time

This is my Norweigan Sweater that took many hours, no...months to make.

First I found a red sweater I liked in a catalog, bought it, realized that I didn't want anyone thinking that I made this with such sloppy workmanship, sat all night copying the intricate pattern onto graph paper with little x's, then proceded to knit a swatch and plan, and sent back the sweater. In the meantime, I totally changed my hair and now a red sweater would not do, it would clash with my new bronze hair color. So... my sweater would be orange, black and white.

I got an idea to put inspirational sayings inside the bottom hem band, (from Elizabeth Zimmerman) and I took time and care picking out the right words to put into my sweater.

Patience is the best way to accomplish things.

It helps if you believe in yourself.

Dare * Dream * Do * Give Thanks *
Love * Laugh

It takes courage to continue.

I need to heed those last words. You see, at the beginning,I measured around my most ample areas to get the circumference, and I knit it with steeks, so it is the same circumference from bottom to top, and now the sweater is TOO BIG. No not now, it has always been too big.

And here comes the avoidance behavior. I know that I must make this sweater right. After everything I went through to make it, truly from scratch, I owe it to myself to fix it.

BUT...(there always is a big but, isn't there.) my shoulder area, the size of the circumference causes a very large DROP before the sleeves start. The sleeves are a perfect length, now. If I try to make the sweater fit around me by perhaps *GULP* cutting it and sewing it back together, I would certainly have to totally re-do the sleeves...totally RE-KNIT the sleeves. I know that re-knitting the sleeves is much less than re-knitting the whole sweater. BUT (dang, another one!) I am not sure I'll like the results of CUTTING and sewing.

As to the Everything in it's own Time...

I need to work on my "knitting to fit"...I guess that is why I usually design and make bags, hats, scarves, you know, accessories. SO...perhaps it is not TIME for me to fix this problem. I need to fill my brain with more information and tricks and trial and errors in smaller scale to get that fitting thing right.

On top of all this, I am now very much blonde again, and I look darn good in red.


Saturday, March 03, 2007

Happy Camper?

I want to go to Knitting Camp.

I am going to apply to go to Knitting Camp.

I am going to go to Knitting Camp!

There. I've stated my intentions and I will be going to camp and be a happy camper.

I have wanted to go to the camp started by Elizabeth Zimmerman (now run by her daughter Meg Swanson) for many years. I recieved the Knitting Workshop DVD and the Special Techniques DVD for Christmas, and as informative and wonderful as those are, I want up close and personal guidance. I love learning! I feel a need right now to expand my knitting knowledge, and what better place than Camp?!

For inspiration, I started knitting the EZ Baby Surprise Jacket. (EZ is for Elizabeth Zimmerman, not EASY.) It is interesting to say the least. I have no idea how it is going to turn into a jacket. I really wanted to make an adult size version, but the more I looked at the "pattern", the more I thought I had better start out with a small version and get the hang of it first. Here it is in progress...

I'm off to my Kaleidoscope Tote class #2 at

Well, happy knitting to you all, and keep your virtual fingers crossed that I get into camp!