A perfect example.

Good Morning class, and welcome to today’s critique of Stephanie’s knitting last night. I’m afraid that we have some real issues here, so lets get started. First, our subject worked on the Eeyore blanket. (1 point given for stick-to-it-iveness) Some of you have had some concerns about the reverse side of this blanket, and given that the subject has in the past simply stuffed a finished item into the back of her closet and pretended that she never knit it rather than deal with the ends, I agree that we should see how it’s going. Sharolene requested a view of the back and wondered if there was any way around the hanging end business.
We all wish there was some way around it Sharolene, but sadly, there is no way to do this without ends decorating the inside like shag carpet. Fortunately The Harlot seems to have learned from the last time that she did intarsia, when she left all of the ends until she was finished (expecting that perhaps the little elves would come and save her?) then, overwhelmed with the sheer mass of ends, suffered a fit of apoplexy and denied all knowledge of the sweater. This time it looks like she is weaving the ends in as she goes. Well, perhaps there is hope for her after all. (2 points granted for not repeating past mistakes)
After working on the blanket for a reasonable length of time, The Harlot decided to move on to socks. This was an excellent choice as she was going to watch A Shot In The Dark and visual comedy and intarsia do not mix. Here again, we see real growth as a knitter. (1 point for appropriate project selection) Having finished the first sock of Samantha’s pair, she cast on for the second. (1 point for avoiding second sock syndrome) As The Harlot is a little obsessive about having socks that match, she carefully found the proper spot in the repeat and began. (1 point for fussiness)
It did not take long for her to realize that something was amiss. (Good catch there…2 points for paying attention). It appeared that she had made an error in selecting the appropriate start point in the yarn. The Harlot promptly frogged the sock, double checked the correct spot, and began again. (Damn. 2 point deduction for starting again without changing anything. When will she learn that doing the same thing over again will not give you different results?) She was surprised to discover several rows later that the same problem was re-occurring. (1 point deduction for not seeing it coming.)
Careful examination of the yarn revealed that although she had knit the first sock drawing from the centre of the ball, and she had begun the second sock drawing from the centre of the ball…the colours were inexplicably appearing in a different order. After ruling out differing dye lot, the Harlot worked out that in fact the yarn was exactly the same but was wound into balls at the factory in a different order. (1 point granted for coming up with the answer, sadly, 2 points deducted for calling it sabotage and talking about conspiracy)
Stephanie then decided that what needed to be done here, was either to knit from the outside of the ball, which would be inconvenient to her…as much of the centre of the ball had been displaced. (1 point deducted for using the phrase “stupid pain in the arse”) or the ball rewound into the correct self-patterning order. The Harlot retrieved her very fun ball winder, clamped it to the table and smiled a little smile for figuring out such a good solution (1 point granted for figuring out a good solution, 2 deducted for not remembering that Pride Goeth Before A Fall) She rewound it at great speed, chuckling to herself at the joy of ball winders. (We’re letting this one go, ball winders are really fun)
When she had rewound it, her Harlotness located the correct spot to begin her socks and then noted that she had not solved her problem, the yarn remained wound in the wrong order. (2 points deducted for foul language) Class…can anyone tell us where Stephanie went wrong? Yes? You in the back….Yes that’s right. If one takes the centre of a centrepull ball, and puts that into the slot on a ballwinder (hereafter referred to as the CENTRE of the ball winder) and winds then you still have the former centre as the current centre. Good for you for figuring it out on the first go. (3 points deducted for Stephanie thinking that rewinding it again centre to centre would fix this problem, and another 1 point for foul language, as well as an additional point for what she almost said to Joe when he asked her what the hell she was doing)
Eventually, it occurred to Stephanie that if she wanted the inside of the current ball to be on the outside of next ball that she would have to do something other than rewinding the yarn perpetually from centre to centre, and she had a major breakthrough, (2 points for finally figuring it out but 1 point deducted for being, you know…”slow”) and rewound it from the outside to the inside. This final action meant that after a prolonged period of winding she finally was ready to begin her sock.
(1 final point deducted for casting on the wrong number of stitches, however, 2 points granted for not setting fire to the entire thing when she realized it)
Final score: -3 out of a possible 14

21 thoughts on “A perfect example.

  1. What we really want to know is this: did you actually have time to watch the movie? And how many points did that lose/add??

  2. Technical terms…technical terms…they are not swear words. How could we knit without them? It wouldn’t be right. They are part of our knitese.
    Glad you are back to knitting ‘good’ socks even with the current nightmare yarn.

  3. At least you solved the problem. After much the same scenario with another self patterning yarn, I discovered that the second ball had a dye problem, all the dye for one stripe had dumped on a 3 inch peice, giving it a colour not in the first ball, and also now missing one stripe entirely. I did finish the second sock, and I swear to everyone that I made them this way on purpose.
    You cannot knit, golf, or raise children without the technical support words. Margene is right.

  4. Oh, your Harlotness, do not despair. Only you are keeping track of the points. This is what I fondly (or not so fondly, actually) refer to as a “fit of frustration”. Glad you saw it through.

  5. I can’t tell you how many times I have had to rewind an entire ball of Fortissima because the second ball was wound in reverse of the first (did that make sense? It’s early…) Now my LYS gives this warning to all customers of self-patterning sock yarn. Thank goodness for ballwinders!! *grin*

  6. I think your points are off. You didn’t wind it “wrong” the first time, you were just straightening it out so you could wind it again the other direction. Been there, done that.
    What is the sock yarn? Fortissima?

  7. Yes, but 15 points for yesterday’s spinning and dying triumph! Plus five points for lesson learned: Yarn manufacturers do this with the explicit intension of trying to fool knitters in to buying MORE space dyed yarn than we need. 100 points off to the manufacturer.
    score – Harlot +17 Yarn mfg -100

  8. I don’t know whether to laugh or commiserate. 🙂
    (At least these were not self-striping _entrelac_ socks.)
    I’m impressed you figured out what was going on with the sock yarn; I would probably have proceded to pull and snip off pieces of the errant ball’s yarn in the hopes of finding “the” place to start, until nothing was left. I think you deserve more points for this.
    As for the cussing — I figure that in knitting, like in carpentry, you get a pass on a certain number of swear words per project. Doesn’t seem like you’ve exceeded that limit — or have you? (Mind boggles at the amount of cussing that would entail.)

  9. I agree with Rana — there shall be no point deductions for swearing. Swearing is a part of the process – and if we really thought about it, we could blame our foul mouths on our mothers – obviously they didn’t raise us right. In sum, no points off for swearing – perhaps points awarded for creative swearing?

  10. I have always wondered why I loved to knit so much when it caused me such frequent aggravation and utterances of, er, “technical terms”. I am relieved that it is not something from which I suffer alone. I love self-patterning yarn and those socks are gorgeous. I gotta get some of that yarn.

  11. I thought the swearing was a prerequisite to knitting. Doesn’t the TKGA have a Master Knitter program with that section covered?
    Well, if we all ever meet in a crowd you’ll know me by my socks that stripe differently. It is necessarily to the funkiness of brightly colored striped socks that they stripe differently. I seek out the balls that are wound different. And I’m always so disappointed that no one notices. I have to show them. Pooh, thats no fun.

  12. Hey, Steph? My cat has taken an interest in this whole sock thing. Coulda been the ball winder. Anyway, he wants you to rip out these socks and reknit them into Lucy Neatby’s Mermaid socks pattern. The Keyboard Biologist started these socks yesterday, and has posted a picture for our edification:
    Now, you might wonder why the $*#()! you should pay attention to what my cat has to say… All I can do is send you to look at him:
    Now you all understand and have become his minions…

  13. Not only your blog entries, but the comments also, are the funniest things in the knitting universe.

  14. But I don’t swear! (Don’t have anything against it, just . . . don’t.) Does this make me not a real knitter? I do say “darn” at my knitting a lot, and occasionally “frickin'” if I’m really upset. 😉

  15. Darn and frickin’ certainly count in my book, especially if muttered in a low, grouchy undertone while glaring at the knitting responsible.

  16. It has always been my opinion that two handknitted socks, ANY two handknitted socks, match. They may even be the product of two different knitters.
    If they are handmade, they match.

  17. Clearly, Fortissima does this winding 1/2 the balls one way and the other 1/2 another to keep us on our toes..haha…it happened to me too…it’s happening everywhere in sockdom, I imagine..I, too think they gotta match!

  18. This also happened to me with the Fun Fur-type yarn for my Muppet Scarf. I, too, was glad that if nothing else, I quickly realized what was going on and rewound the ball. I didn’t have the ball winder problem though, being that, y’know, I don’t have a ball winder. 🙂

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