Friday, May 12, 2006

Lump, plus a Tale of Woe

Behold the lump in all its glory.

This, folks, is my lovely moebius scarf. But once you get past a certain point on a moebius, especially if you're using just one needle, it just looks like a lump. A big, colorful, seed stitch lump. But I know the secret, I know what's really in that lump, and it keeps me going.

The yarn is Wool in the Woods Dunluce, a shiny rayon with a great texture and a fabulous colorway called Shy, greens with purples. The whole thing is seed stitch except for a band of stockinette in the middle, where I cast on.

A moebius, for those of you who haven't had geometry in a while, is a loop with a half twist. Take a strip of paper, twist it once and then connect the two ends. You can trace the edge all the way around both sides of the strip. So with a knit moebius, you cast on howevermany stitches, and then you pick up stitches below those and knit, in the round but with your needles doubled over, so that the moebius grows from the middle out. Dunno if that makes any sense, but here's a pretty picture of the newly cast-on moebius:

That straight needle? The secret to my moebius success. The first few rounds it is next to impossible to get your needle in the stitch, especially if you do a purl round (which I did). I kept the straight needle in my left hand, inserted it in the stitch I wanted to purl from left to right, slipped it off the circ, and then purled. It helped a LOT. This might not be as much of a problem for those of you with addis or some other needle with lots of flex, but I was knitting with Clovers. If I ever knit another moebius I'll probably invest in some addis.

Now for the tale of woe. Yesterday I posted pics of my beautiful lace socks (which I am wearing right now, btw). What you don't know about those socks is that it took me six weeks to make them (Mom's socks took only three). This happened partly because last month was my first (and perhaps only) venture into knitting more than one thing at a time. I had the socks, and the moebius, and the crocheted thingie, and especially when it came to turning the heel and picking up the gusset I wasn't willing to spend so much effort on the socks when I could play with something more immediately satisfying.

I also lost a week of good knitting. After a severe bout of second sock syndrome I finally made it to the toe. I'd done about six rounds of the toe when I decided it would be fun to try on both socks at the same time and admire my work. So I pulled on sock #1 and sock #1, so exciting, and then... wait a minute...

Is sock 2 shorter?

I tugged on the cuffs, but it was no use. I pulled the socks off and counted the repeats. 10 on sock 1, just like there were supposed to be. 9 on sock 2. NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Bad, bad bad. I could see no way to fix it so I packed the danged thing up and went to the lys. Once there, the gal working and a few customers appropriately mourned the loss of so much hard work. Then we got out the ball winder and said goodbye to a whole week's worth of knitting. I frogged everything in the foot, my painstakingly picked-up gusset, my lovely heel, and 10 repeats (60 rows) of that lace pattern. It was an unpleasant time.

It gets better though. The whole time I was knitting sock 2.0 I hated it. I just wanted to be done. But sock 2.1 was somehow a lot more fun. I wasn't in a hurry to finish the thing, since I'd already missed my self-imposed deadline by a mile. And I'd really gotten the hang of all the tricky parts, so I had to look at the pattern less often. I can't wait to start my next pair.


At 5/13/2006 10:09 AM , Blogger Pam said...

That's too bad about the frogging! I am glad that it ended up working out for you. You will be addicted to socks before you know it!

At 5/13/2006 5:21 PM , Blogger alliesw said...

Wow, I don't know if I could have brought myself to do that much frogging on a sock, but congratulations on how wondefullly they turned out. I am a certified sock knitting nut, and it all started with one simple pair....welcome aboard!

At 5/13/2006 6:50 PM , Blogger Shelley said...

Here from the Knitters Review forum and thought I'd stop and say hello!

At 5/17/2006 8:34 AM , Blogger Knit and Tink said...

Oh gosh, the frogging of the sock..been there so many times. You'll love it when you're done though. You learned and you boosted your confidence. I knit the moebius too...and Addis definitely make it worthwhile. If you will do a lot of them, invest in them. I knit my socks on Addis too.


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