Red Heart has finally produced a yarn that is specifically for pooling. Uniformity of color is assured, “engineered so that color repeats are evenly dyed for happier pooling” – as the ad says. I was looking for this about two weeks ago when I went to Joann Crafts, but they weren’t carrying it yet. I have to call them. And yet….am I being silly when I say I don’t want it to become easy? That means there will be no craft or hard-won hours to brag about? That’s why I need to try this out. As soon as it hit the shelves on my LYS, I’m getting some, and I will report the results.
Here’s my latest over on YouTube. Don’t forget to like and subscribe!
With that out of the way, I could focus entirely on my scarf. I was so excited to finally work on a pooled crochet project. If you saw my last entry, you know how keen I was to be doing this. It was going to be the prettiest scarf, ever, with tassels and everything. When I finished with the first skein, I was figuring out how to join the two yarns so that the color sequence remained the same, and discovered that in order to make the match, I would have to pull not from the center but the outside. I unwound the factory skein with my yarn winder so the correct end would be used. Ok, so I can be funny that way; I just didn’t want to be pulling from the outside as it always causes trouble later on!
As I successfully joined the yarns, I had to blink my eyes several times because, oh crap, the colors weren’t the same hue. In my haste to begin with this beloved project, I failed to check dye lot numbers. Goody. I had already unwound the new skein, so there was no returning or replacing it. Double goody. What do you do when this happens? You check how it fits around your neck and make a buttoned cowl, or neck wrap, which was no easy feat considering the pattern I was trying to keep; but, I persevered and got ‘er done! Ta-da!
I will be making a scarf next, and I will be checking the dye lots! I will also be using a different technique to see how that goes. I’ll let you all know. In the meantime, behave!
See you in the funny pages.
The long hot days of summer have a way of making one lazy. I still haven’t finished the Shark Bite socks I was so eager to start a month ago. I’ve completed one sock and I’m slogging my way through the other one. I’ve had to frog this project so many times I’ve seriously thought of giving it up; however, after spending $43 for the yarn, I just can’t. I’m sure they’ll be my favorites as soon as they’re done, but that seems like such a long way away.
In the interim, I’ve started on a scarf using the pooling technique. I’ve put that one off for awhile. I’d heard about how hard it was, but argyle plaid is one of my favorite designs, so…
But it’s not all work, work, work over here. I actually went to the races, something I’ve done only once before in my life. The actual racing itself doesn’t capture my attention, but as I went with a good friend whose son and grandchildren are involved, it took on a meaning. I had someone to root for rather than just watching some bikes race around a lap. The engine noise could be a bit loud, but all I had to do was pull out my hearing aids and we were rocking! LOL
All in all, we’re enjoying life here in Northern California. How about where you are?
See you in the funny pages!
Hey, everyone. How are your holidays going? Treating you good? I hope so. Although this post has landed perilously close to Christmas and, I assume, other holidays, it has nothing to do with them. Let’s take a break from that, shall we?
I want to take a moment and talk about us liars out there. You know what I mean. “Knitting is easy!” “Crochet is a breeze.” I’m very guilty of this. And you’re shaking your head, if not physically, then mentally. What is she talking about? Knitting is easy and crochet is a breeze! Ok, smarty pants. Maybe for you, and a very small minority, it was a breeze. Your needles fly under your deft fingers, your hook is moving so fast that it’s a blur and every stitch is perfect. New techniques? No problem.
Like the title of this post says, let’s be honest. Think back to when you first picked up those knitting needles, felt their heft, or gazed wonderingly upon that crochet hook, marveling at the sleek lines and how they turned into…well, the hook. Some of you may have to really dig in the vault of memories for this, but do it. Did it feel natural? Remember that first chain, and how proud you were of yourself. And then, when you got tired of that, discovering how to turn and create stitches. Let’s not forget that first successful cast on row. My tongue worked as hard as my fingers! Speaking of tongues, we also have our own language. You think k2tog then yo or dbl through fp means anything to anyone else?
….but, think of the beginner. How many will give up because it’s just too hard? For whatever reason, they are done after that initial foray. Their skeins of yarn will either gather dust in some forgotten drawer or be thrown away (gasp! oh, no!) because they’re taking up space. And yes, there are a great many people, who, literally, simply don’t care. Of course, they will enjoy the fruits of our labors, and marvel at the overall beauty of the gift, but that’s as far as it will go. However, for us, we wanted to do it. Whatever our motivation was at the time, we wanted to do it; and we did. Look at us now – champions of the crusade! Not only is it easy, there are multiple benefits to knowing these crafts.
And I for one, think we should respect our hobbies for the honed crafts they truly are. Will I stop saying it’s easy? Probably not. Should I? Yes, most definitely. Is all this work worth it? That, I’ll leave for you to decide…
I made the mistake of signing up for a machine knitting group, thinking it was a regular knitting group. I have just unregistered, but it got me thinking. Again. Am I knit purist or snob? I don’t think using a knitting machine can be rightly considered knitting. Is it even a craft? I’m not dinging the people out there who love to do this. I know it’s a lot faster to finish a project than hand knitting, but I also know it’s limiting. I had purchased a machine about three years back because I thought for a minute that I wanted to crank out my own sweaters. Then I went on YouTube and looked at some how-to videos. It doesn’t appear to require a whole bunch of…technique. Is that what a makes a craft? Practice? Discipline? Does it take any of these things to use a knitting machine? I have no idea, as my foray into the world of semi-automated knitting was short lived. I didn’t even open the box; I returned it immediately.
I think it depends on why you’re using the machine. My idea of making my own designs and then making the garment was valid enough; however, while waiting for the machine (I ordered it online), I realized that my passion was not for cranking out mass amounts of sweaters, but the act of knitting itself. Feeling the needles in my hand, the yarn that seems to automatically wrap around my right hand fingers for tension, holding my mouth a certain way as I fight with a particularly difficult cable, the whole throwing vs. picking technique, continental vs. English, the mobility of it while you tote around your latest pair of socks, sitting around a table with other knitters while talking about knitting! – that’s knitting.
I would like to hear from both sides! For those of you who use machines, do you use them exclusively or do you mix it up with hand knitting? For those of you who hand knit, why did you start? Was it a yarn thing, the finished product thing, a family thing…? Let me know.
I purchased some yarn for a project about two weeks ago, and I was excited to get started on it, but I’ve been working on Christmas gifts. I tried to get a head start on those back in July, but didn’t get around to it until September. Typical. They’re almost done, but I just couldn’t wait. Breaking my rule about having no more than one project going at a time (I’m usually good at keeping this rule – honest!), last night I cast on the stitches with a feeling of guilty pleasure normally reserved for chocolate. I had been working and running all day and was more than a little tired,
but I wanted to play “ketchup”. Surprisingly, I was able to get more than a few inches done, considering I’m working with 122 stitches and worsted weight yarn.
Then it hit. A busy day of activity and it’s 9:30 pm; can’t keep eyes open. Must. Knit. More.
Suddenly, my eyes open. When did they close? I look down at my hands that are still holding the needles, yarn still twined around my fingers on my right hand for proper tension. Wha…? I blink my eyes, notice that I’m further along than I remember and look around in sleepy confusion. Did the knitting elves show up and continue for me? I run a hand over my brow, now thoroughly baffled. And since I am primed to carry on, I do.
It’s not until a turn the row do I notice that the knitting elves are a confused lot because:
#1) I’m picking up dropped stitches more than once;
#2) Tension was maintained properly so the stitches that weren’t dropped are uniform in appearance.
It would be a wonderful innovation if I could fall asleep and wake up with the project half done, but I still have a few kinks to work out!