Simon Schama's History of Britain is GREAT for knitting. Really. It's really long and has lots of talking and most of it is about before there were any movies so what could they show that's important to watch, really?
The fact that you are finishing such a complicated sweater so fast really puts what I thought was fast knitting (for me) to shame! Can't wait to see the finished product. And have you thought about silver and bronze medals for those of us who might finish just after the end of the Olympics? (perhaps a day after earns a silver, two days after a bronze, something like that?)
You know you just thrive on this pressure. The sweater is looking amazing so far. I hope to knit a Dale one day, although not in 16 days. Ever.
Regardless of anything, the Dale is lovely. The colours are delicious, and you will end up with a great sweater eventually. Is it considered stalking if I knit the same thing in the same colours? I just really love the green/orange/cream combo. Really. Just ask my family.
Oh, that sweater is looking just lovely...can't wait to see it when it's all done. You are amazing!
My sweetheart of a husband is out picking up extra yarn for me today so I can finish my shawl. Love him!
Also, don't have your husband leave town for a week, leaving you with 2 kids and lots of laundry.
I'm a victim of the "let me give you a backrub" problem mentioned above. But I didn't understand the risks! Too bad I hadn't seen your warning....
And I have to admit to wearing a wrist brace, although the repetitive motion injury which caused it occurred BEFORE the Olympics began. But a true athlete is willing to compete through the pain, right?
Another serious problem: A school concert competition at a school far, far from your house involving a child who does not drive. Dang! The concert itself is great knitting time, but 1.5 hours (total) in the car?!?!?! Ouch.
Ah well, Brampton is good but being related to Lucy Maud Montgomery would have been much more romantic, don't ya think?
My Olympic support staff (aka husband) abandoned me for 6 days to go on something he calls a "business trip". I think I should change the locks while he's gone.....unsupportive monster!
I think I can, I think I can, I think I can....
Holy crap, that's me!
And here I was, reading, thinking "I shouldn't get my hopes up...I never win these contests...."
I'm so not worthy.
And I assume that mentioning that Danger looks breathtakingly lovely is cold comfort?
Just checking. :)
But if I don't go get a massage, I won't be able to knit because my back is tied up in knots! I know I'll be losing time, but my story is that this is medical therapy.
Luckily, hubby just left this morning for Minneapolis, AND school is out this week, so I have extra time to knit. This work stuff really gets in the way...! Hats off to you, Steph, for that beautiful sweater!
Great list. It'll all be fine. Really.
Yeah, Imbrium. The rest of us want your home address, too...
Does "finishing" include all the blocking and sewing? I thought so. I might (or might not) qualify for that silver or bronze.
Sick days, good thought. You forgot to mention that most people can knit faster with Addi Turbos. I am, myself, off to the LYS to purchase some Addi's, the Denise needles (which I do love but not for speed) I have been using are too draggy and slowing down the process. Screw the possible change of gauge...
I took your advice from your book, and now the bf does the cleaning up after I cook. Maybe I can get him to do the cooking and the cleaning up and save myself that extra time...Me thinks that is a fabulous idea!
Ahh, "backrubs," the time-honored way for men to attempt to get women into bed. If only they knew that vacuuming the living room would work better!
Oh Ya, a fun post - gotta read this at least three times :o)
Country Variety Yarn Shop
IT'S ALL ABOUT OPAL
I like your list, but would have to include an 11th item: "Find something that will distract the cats". My Olympic project (the Irish Diamond Shawl) has gotten long enough that they can now lie on it, and they will keep readjusting themselves to be *on* it, no matter how many times I move them. Also, every knitting session lately has begun with fifteen to twenty minutes of 'knit a few stitches, remove the yarn from the cat's mouth, knit a few more stitches (with cold, clammy yarn), remove more yarn from cat's mouth.
Also, if you have been staying up late and are starting to doze off while knitting, here's a great tip to get that adrenaline pumping: accidently jerk your arm and drop a dozen or so stitches right in the middle of the row with the most number of yarn overs. Trust me, once you finally get them all picked up again (after swearing and the praying to the knitting gods), you will be wide awake and ready to keep on knitting.
The extended play versions of the Lord of the Rings trilogy are good knitting movies too. I've almost run out of yarn and am impatiently waiting for another 3 balls to arrive so I can do the trim and edging on my coat. Who would have thought that 20 balls of Aran weight yarn were not enough to make a coat to fit an average size woman??? I'm about the same size as our beloved Harlot.
Hopefully the yarn shop understood to send it Priority Mail. The clerk said that he understood the problem and that it was for the Olympics. lol
Could it be.. that there is a such thing as Olympic IT??
OOohh boy... 2 times a year.. can your family really handle it?
Is there such a thing as a "predatory knitter?" And if so, wouldn't people who try to weasel the addresses of contest winners be included in this group? I'm not thinking of anyone in particular *coughramscough*, I'm just wondering...
Jay-sus. You might actually pull this one off.
It really is looking lovely, and I see definite signs of progress!
Well, dang. Stephanie -- looks like you're actually gonna finish that puppy after all!
Can I add a 12th thing to the list (after the cat note above). Get a flu shot. Definitely. I was making decent catchup progress until I got the flu. I can't seem to focus my eyes on the yarn. Last night, I ended up with one extra stitch in the front ribbing. I could rip, or punt. I punted. Fortunately, in a place where two stitches knit together did not show.
Sigh, bronze for me, I think.
Another life-saver - Divide and conquer! See - I'm knitting this sweater and I hate seaming. So, of course, I started at the bottom and knit in the round till the armholes. Then I kept everything on circulars and knit front and back at the same time. Then I knit one shoulder placket and then the other. Then I picked up stitches around one armhole and knit down halfway and then the other. Now I'm dividing even more. I knit a quarter way more down one sleeve and am going back to the other to knit to the same location. That way I don't have to write down how I'm decreasing (knit how many rows and then decrease?)
I totally agree with Jenipurr about needing to distract the cats. I also find that when knitting the black hole section of the sweater, it helps me to set goals like "I just have to knit this whole skein's worth before dinner." Still don't know if I'm gonna make it. I may have a knitted sweater, but probably not an assembled and blocked one...
Imbrium, whatever you do, don't give out your address to Rams! She knows where to find stash weasels and she will most likely use them to ferret out that lovely Fleece Artist! Beware!
I am just about to cross the finish line on my Olympic Knitting. Just out of curiousity, what do we do when we're done?
Wow, I never realized how close my husband's name, Ferrell, is to knitting lingo! How cool is that? He's gonna just love that.
I am feeling like a loser these days, i still have a whole other half a scarf. Who am I to complain though, it's still just a scarf.
I made a mistake putting on a movie with subtitles this afternoon but I will be getting back on the horse right after this post and few views at the other knitting blogs, I need encouragment.
thanks for your post, it hits the spot.
Wish I could get to the Flying Dragon tonight! My husband didn't want to cancel his class' exam (I thought they'd have appreciated that), so he could drive me. And the sweater is gorgeous. But I know my limits (still fighting with that heel - on the FIRST sock).
I was going to add an item 11, or 12, or maybe even 13 at this point, which is to make sure you have enough yarn! duh. I am about to run out and my LYS is ordering more...but will it get here in time? It's not looking like it right now. Sigh.
I did, however, learn something new: I can (I think I can) do lace knitting. And can't wait to do more.
Congrats Imbrium on winning the sock yarn!
Stephanie, do you know Georgetown? That is where I am from. We moved to NB in 79 when I was 10 (yes, that makes me 37 now). I don't know if it's going by Halton Hills or not, but seems to me at one time there was talk of changing it over to that.
The sweater looks amazing, and really seems almost done from the photo.
Do we just post here when we're finished? I finished the final stitches in the morning and brought the clapotis to work to pull down all the dropped stitches--which is very scary at first but makes for a satisfying ending.
Sorry, Martha, sorry, Maggie, I was out harnessing up the stashweasels for a little run. Did you say something?
And, when all else fails, say, "I meant to do that", for example, my project is a cotton baby blanket with lace motifs...(much more practical for a baby born in Sacramento in April than the Debbie Blish Cashmerino sweater w/the added 'Feral' pattern that I had planned) about a quarter of the way through, I thought, "Hey... you know what would really make this look good? Embroidered rosebuds..." And now that it looks like I may finish the whole thing and leave it to block Friday morning, but without time for the embroidery, I'm thinking "Hey, you know...I think the rosebuds would be overkill..." Sort of like the bronze medalist in ice skating or aerial skiing who decides to firmly land the easier move instead of risking the fall on the quadruple w/a twist... (Points off for uneven placement of the lace motifs, Bob, but since she crafted the whole thing out of yarn ALREADY IN HER STASH! she can probably make up the points there...)
I agree with point 7 having watch the BBC serials 'Pride and Prejudice' and 'North and South' this last weekend. However it was a bit counterproductive when I found at the end of Sunday that I needed to unpick half a sleeve! I am certainly being challenged. Right back to the knitting.
Chunky yarn on big needles. Somehow I've managed to complete my Olympic project - plus two scarves! This despite multiple phone calls to my truly talented mom when parts of the pattern didn't make sense. (Now I knkow why. I just found a veritable boatload of corrections to the pattern at the yarnmake's website. Somehow, though, I produced a wearable item without the benefit of the corrections.) The actual knitting went so fast with a super bulky yarn on 15s that the time I spent wrangling with the errors didn't set me back.
Love the title of this entry! My sentiments exactly!
Working for a living can also provide an alternative to point 6: Vacation Days. Thank heaven I arranged to have Friday off this week, adding to my knitting time. And points 9 and 10 are essential for all of us to remember. This is supposed to be fun!
You should be glad to be a Canadian. This Team USA Knitter has the added challenge of having the kid out of school the entire week to celebrate President's Day. Including weekends, that's NINE DAYS STRAIGHT (out of 16) where there is no peaceful knitting time.
And I chose lace as my first project.
O-mi-gosh! Weave my hair for wool and call it cashmerino, the Olympics end on Sunday! Sunday Sunday GLORIOUS Sunday-- I have time to do that embroidery after all... (I'm sort of a right brained, time deprived kind of person... I was under the delusion that the Olympics ended on Friday...)
Of course your sweater puts my hat to shame BUT I've been knitting less than a year and you've been at it since you were FIVE!!! I love it - Ferrell - Fair Isle - I can now tell Sweetie that when I met him, I was put on an irresistable life course towards knitting SO IT's ALL HIS FAULT that I need all this yarn!!! Of course secretly I'll be loving him for that one but if I can get yarn "mileage" out of it he really doesn't need to know.
I too am wondering, now that I've completed my gold medal task, do I need to email you dear harlot - how could you and your "buds" possibly get around to checking all those thousands of blogs????? AND by golly even though I wasn't in it for the medal (yeah right!) I do want to "wear" mine!
Whoopie - - I can knit!
I have finished my Knitting Sampler from The Sweater Workshop. Check it out on my blog:
Many thanks for creating the Knitting Olympics.
I'm glad I'm not the only one worrying about finishing. My real life is getting in the way of my dream life ths week. Last week it was easy when I was on holiday & spent 50% of it knitting. (I wanted to knit more, but my family was not going for it.)
Speaking of injuries, should I be worried if the ring finger on my left hand has started to tingle? :) Damn sock needles!!
I have just two words for Olympic Knitters everywhere....RED BULL! Drink it well and drink it often....
Rams, dear, do we really have to do this again? Alright then. One Hundred times now, not a row less: I will Not scare other knitters out of their yarn.
I'll be back to check on you later.
I finished my sweater. Am I supposed to forward a picture or something as evidence? Or can I just go collapse on the couch?
That was pretty wild. I really didn't think I could do a sweater in so little time and there were some substatial problems with setting in the sleeves. The first attempt had them upside down with 2 inch cuffs, the second had them grow funny points just past the shoulders--great flying aliens who want to keep the wings inside the sweater. Those almost knocked me from the competition.
I really had a good time with this. I love reading about what everyone else is doing. Thank you, Stephanie, for starting such a wonderful worldwide knitting phenomenon. You rock!
do you sleep at night? No? Well, there we go, that explains it.
I also started on the second sock before finishing the first one. Partly because I run out of yarn, and partly because the cuff (Estonian Sock)is the most time consuming part.
I wonder if there is going to be some sort of a closing ceremony, how many of the 4,000 athletes took home the gold. vj
The "fair isle" comment cracks me up...my husband uses the term "Betty Turbos" instead of addi turbos for anything that needs to be fast. As in, I say "Hurry Up" and he says "I can't, I forgot my betty turbos".
I agree fully with the everyone staying healthy. I finished my baby sweater early (extremely bulky yarn on size 15 needles for a six month old) so I thought I'd try my first cardigan (baby-sized of course). That's when my husband brought home a cold from work to share with us. My 6 month old decided to stop daytime naps for 4 straight days! It's hard to knit with a screaming baby.
Do I get disqualified for finishing early? I have now completed my evening bag of tiny beads and silk thread. Slipery to say the least. When you fall (drop stitches) you get a restart. Cool. I have lined and embelished. Need to finish early as I am leaving for warm weather on Friday morning. Thanks for the challange. I have always done this alone and how nice to have thousands knitting along with me. I did knit a Dale Sweater the year they skied in Norway. Finished and all during the alloted time. Does this mean that practice helps. No what helps is no children at home and a hubby who cooks.
Send up the cheer.
Okay, so I spit my pop out when I read Number 8. You are such a peach. Thank you for making me smile every single time I read your blog!!!
For Bonnie in SF, Yes, but being a teacher in the USA means I had almost a whole week without having to do anything but knit (of course, today, I had to tell 125 kids that, "No, I haven't finished the sweater yet, I've got 5! more! days!"
Darn it. That (that you and Cassie share the same hometown) was my second guess. That'll teach me to stick with my gut on these things.
Yay! Whoo-hoo! [ring cowbell] [wave flag of your team] Hooray! You rock!
(Those are some cheers from Maine for all you Olympic knitters.)
I'm totally taking a sick day on Friday! Because let's face it, I'm going to be really sick if I don't get this thing done!!! I'm hoping that I can pull it off in the end, and win the Gold!!
I want sick days and vaction days!!! Yeah, there may be some benefits to working out of the house (very loud rock & roll, and continuous tea to start), but I lose out on knitting time when work is glaring at me balefully from the kitchen table... And then people wanting to talk to you at a show because they might want to buy someting just cuts into that precious knitting time as well... Sigh. I know I won't make it, but I am still knitting faster than I ever have before - my new goal is both lace sock cuffs, and possibly heel flaps. I'm calling it good, and it has been a blast following this world mania - GO KNITTERS!!!!
I'm not going to finish in time. In addition to the gold medal icon for the winners, could someone please make a "Nobility of Failure" icon for the rest of the participants? Or maybe the smoking remnants of an Olympic torch that has been burned at both ends?
Well, _someone_ has to be the kind of athlete with no chance who still skates or skis or sleds or whatever, with the only goal participation, and spends the rest of the time wandering around the village ooing and aahing at the other athlets' knitting.
That would be me. Go, everyone else!
Steph, the sweater is looking GORGEOUS! Can't wait to see it finished.
Has anyone noticed that Olympic coverage is extremely repetitive? I suppose they don't expect anyone to watch that many hours of coverage in a day!
On a sad note, the men's hockey team are out, losing to Russia 2-0. The first goal came right at the beginning of the third, and I swear I was knitting faster and faster as the clock wound down (second goal was in the last minute of play) which did wonders for my edging...
Megan - yes, you need to worry when the fingers tingle! Find a way to hold the sock needles so they don't press on that finger; it's easier once there's enough sock to use as a cushion. Also recommended: change how you hold the needles every 5 minutes (set a timer), rest your hands (5 minutes out of every hour), change your neck position (not a joke, my neck position can make my hands go numb). Adjust the goal if you must; surgery is not fun.
Steph your sweater is awesome! I have no doubt you'll finish with time to spare. I can't wait to see it all together.
I do have a question. I'm knitting my first sweater (VK winter #13 the artful sweater) The front and back are done and drying. I am now knitting both sleeves at the same time. Both sleeves together have fewer stitches than the front/back so why do I feel like I am making no progress. I knit last night, this morning, this afternoon and I am only up the the elbow!
Is this some knitting voodoo I should know about?
That's it. Stashweasel is my new favorite word.
I recommend the North and South trilogy. You might miss some of the longing looks across the veranda if you look at your work, but, honestly, there are too many of them anyway.
A definite change can be felt in my home. Not only is everyone very proud of me for finishing my first socks, but I got my first package of sock yarn in the mail today.
When I looked at the unopened package and smiled, my 13 year old daughter said very excitedly, "oooh! Is it sock yarn? Can I see?" She's already picked out which color she wants.
I'm just smilin'.
Congrats to all you champions of Olympic spirit, working through illness, dinner (what? It's that time AGAIN?), running out of wine (chocolate, tea, coffee, eyesight), and other stumbling blocks that would fell lesser humans.
I am so impressed by you, Stephanie! I would say that I would have been much further along in my Olympic endeavor had I not been somewhat addicted to this blog and trying to catch up on all that is (yarn) Harlot! I am still reading entries from last year, when taking a break from knitting. Let us press on to our final goals! Mine is to finish this lap afghan. Blessings! Julie
Nuts! I can't quit now!!!
You are doing a spectacular job Steph! Keep up the good work!
I'm buying myself a bag of those chocolate coins. You know, the ones wrapped in gold foil. I need some "internal motivation." I'll pretend they're tiny gold medals.
I have finished knitting a Charlotte Web shawl instead of the Cable Shrug I said I was going to do. Blocking will happen tomorrow! Thanks for a great experience Steph.
Cool! I'm in the first 100 commenters! :o) Steph. Sweetie. I'm reading At Knit's End and I'm reading you here and FINALLY I've found my niche. I've LOVED knitting since I was 9 - that's nearly 40 years. And MOST of that time? I was ON my ON! You've made me feel a part of something WAY bigger than myself! Thankyou. THANK you! THANK YOU!!! I would NEVER have been Olympic material without your encouragement!
BLESSINGS! from The South!
"and I'll get it in the mail. (Monday.)"
I just snorted my tea reading that 'Monday' part. *ROFL*
I just bought He-Man season 1 on dvd. I should just watch that and knit alll niiight lonnng :)
Go Harlot Go! I'm cheering you on from Montreal. And the Knitting Olympics was featured on the CBC National! How cool is that?
Taking advantage of #9. Thanks for the diversion - back to knitting!
After 72 comments, I'm sure mine will fall into the black hole of commenting. But you are making AMAZING progress on that sweater. I started that very same sweater nearly 18 months ago for my husband and it is STILL not finished. Although you may still call us Olympians, I fear I am knitting like Bodie Miller skied the Super-G.
i'm listening to book tapes. it helps. unfortunately, between me & my 11 year old, we've had the flu. he came home early from school friday & today, puking. i didn't puke this weekend (yes, it would happen on a weekend i planned on being productive!) but god i felt awful
redbull doens't work for me, and neither does coffee. chocolate, however. . . .
i'm there. i'm on square 9. go, me, go.
I finished my Olympic knitting on Thursday, 16 February! A record SIX DAYS!!! AND...we planned my daughter's wedding - location, invitations, her dress ordered, bridesmaids dresses ordered, florist, DJ, started looking for my MOB dress. Now to finish the sweater I started for her two years ago......
Stephanie, your sweater is just GORGEOUS!! If only I could do that in 16 WEEKS, let alone 16 days!
Stephanie, the sweater is just gorgeous, but I'm staggered that you have done so much traveling and speaking and still knit this much. Love the whole idea of the Knitting Olympics, even though I didn't participate due to starting a new job. YOU SO ROCK!
I have been lurking here for a few months now and finally decided to speak up and introduce myself. My name is Jessica and I am from Pennsylvania USA. I am in the middle of reading "Yarn Harlot" right now and I hate putting it down. If you ever come to PA, feel free to look me up!
i have lived in both Brampton and Bramalea, and yes, i do sometimes feel odd when i think that one was 'absorbed' by the other. kind of clementine-ish. (i recently heard Scott Thompson do a walking tour of Brampton, his hometown on DNTO... it included a stop at the outdoor/indoor mall, of course.)
I am just about to cross the finish line on my Olympic Knitting. Just out of curiousity, what do we do when we're done?
Inspired by the figure skating exhibition, I whipped out a totally improvised hat. The shawl is now blocking (sort of). It's too big for my blocking board and I ran out of pins!
#6 is looking really good right now! I mumbled about being stiff and ache-y today, so by Friday I ought to be good and sick! Or, my son might be very cooperative and have his cough develop into something that would require me to stay home with him, forcing him to sit on the sofa and watch hours of Cartoon Network while I knit!
My first Jaywalker sock is done and I'm 4' done the second, not panicking yet!
oops - make the above comment 4" down the second sock - my legs aren't THAT long!
I think I'm out of medal contention; my coach has an actual 9-5 job and is consequently unavailable most of the time when I get to a part of the sock pattern that makes no sense...still, I will finish the sock at some point(on *her* schedule, I think) and then hopefully then a second sock, and here's the thing: I never would have attempted socks had it not been for you, Steph, and the knitting olympics. I've already learned about"short rows" and am looking forward to the "kitchener stitch" part...so thanks!
Your sweater looks amazing. I'm not worthy...
I needed this post today. It has been a bit trying at the job: (herding teenagers in large numbers into small spaces and asking them to think AKA teaching high school)! I gues my Olympic project was not quite up to requirements as I finished on Sun. evening. I was never so glad to finish a project in my life as the yarn (Snowflake **^$*&! something that I am glad I only had to knit 2/3 of what I bought as I don't think I could have knit the other 1/3.) When/If you drop a stitch, you cannot tell how to pick it up and then, of course, the k2 tog decreases are not even in the realm of possibilities of picking up. So the question is: if a stitch is dropped and no one can see it, is it really a dropped stitch?
On to glory fellow Olympic knitters! (The Master's program requirements beckon...)
Brampton, Eh??? Kathy Carter Gastle is my cousin!
I personally love the idea of the torch burned at both ends - I am loving the challenge, even knowing I'm not going to get to the podium!
Anybody notice what a fabulous job the Canadian women are doing in Turin - I couldn't feel too heartbroken about the men's hockey loss on a day when Cindy Klassen had won her 4th medal(four medals in one games - that's like knitting a Dale Olympic sweater in 16 days, for heaven's sake!), and Chandra Crawford had skiied up out of nowhere to win gold this morning - for me, it just doesn't get any better than that!
I raise a "bicerin" to all of you (apparently the trendy drink in Turin - it involves espresso, really good chocolate and a lot of whipping cream - the Toronto Star ran a recipe in Feb.15 food section, if anybody's interested!) - sounds like a knitting Olympics drink to me.
Lisa in Hastings
I spent one Summer as a Feral Child! It was weird. But hey, that's what happens sometimes when you visit your crazy relatives.
hems AND ribbing - Olympic Gold/madness =) But it sure is pretty!
go go go go go Go Go Go Go GO GO GO GO! GOLD!!!
Bad kitty posted the last comment before I finished sharing what my knitting has tried to impart to me:
1. If you forget your waste yarn for the provisional cast-on, beg husband to pull off the freeway and find a yarn shop. Do NOT just use your main yarn, especially if you don't always pick the right loop in the chain for the cast-on.
2. If you don't occasionally LOOK at the row counter, it will not help you keep your place.
3. Occasionally spread your project out and admire it, so that you will notice you forgot a (very noticeable) row of pattern before you knit the next 6 inches.
--Knitting in Downers Grove, Illinois, hometown of Cammie Granato
Hurrah for me! Just finshed my Triathlon: pair of Thrum mittens (my first) from Fleece Artists, a Stash scarf, pattern by Judith Stangold, and a baby afghan in a decades-old "bowtie"pattern in Cashmerino and Mohair. Very pleased....
Good luck to all the Olympic Knitters and Thank You, Stephanie, for making it all happen!
Well, I thought I had a chance to finish the other sock if I stayed up really late for the next couple of nights. Until my husband tried on what was supposed to be a size 10 1/2 sock for my father... and it didn't fit his size 9 feet. But it fit me, a ladies size 8. I checked my book again, and how stupid am I for misreading the chart. I can congratulate myself for finishing a size 5 woman's sock. I even wove in the ends before I realized what I'd done - which is also stupid, because I knew it looked way too small, but I was in denial. So I took an hour to carefully undo the kitchener stitch and frog back to just before the toe, so I could add another 25 rows to make it the proper size. I'm ready for the toe again now, and it took me all evening to get there. All this is just to say, can we have bronze and silver medals, too? Bronze for 50% done, silver for 75%? I'd feel better about only getting one sock done, at least...
I'm not sure that it's in the spirit of this event for the ones who have finished to be gloating while those of us who wasted four days trying to knit with The Yarn That Was Cursed are pathetically trying to get at least half of their projects done...if I DO get half done I'll award myself a bronze medal for effort. I'm sure you'll win gold, Stephanie. and if you hear from the New Yorker magazine, I was the one who sent 'em - thought the KO would make a great "Talk of the Town" segment. There are lots of Knitletes here in NYC! Wonder how that knitter I found in Beijing is doing? And I had a lovely exchange with one from Sweden - all your doing, Steph! You're a visionary.
Hi Stephanie and hi all!! :)
Your sweater is looking wonderful and am sure you will finish. Me Well I think I will have the knitting done but the sewing up will take a couple of days at least!!
So was thinking , perhaps a badge/button "I took part in the Knitting Olympics 2006" would be good for those of us who took part but didn't quite make gold!! Altho I think all the knitting olpymians are "gold" reading all the posts and blogs has been amazing. So much has been achieved by all. What an inspiration you have been. All this "positiveness" must be rubbing off" on the world.
Have just received your 1st book yesterday. Am so enjoying it..!
So thanks! and knit on >^..^<
The sweater looks great. I've finished my project, but I must admit, I feel a bit like a slacker for not taking on a bigger project. Ah well, now I have time to finish other long-neglected projects.
I crashed and burned over the weekend, and have taken my place in the stands. I stand in awe of those of you who are pressing on to the finish ... go! knit! you can do it!
Wow! Just tonight at knitting group we were talking about how we were worried that you wouldn't make it because we hadn't seen any of that complicated fair isle work on the chest of your sweater yet. And then I get home and check your website - and OMG there it is. You're sneaky! and it looks like you're going to make it after all.
I'm just finishing the button bands and then tomorrow I will seam sleeves and knit the underarms. It's looking like I'll make it too. This was a fun challenge.
So, my first attempt at fair isle (funny that it's part of today's post) is complete!!
I have crossed the virtual finish line with one glorious Moose Hat with twisted cord tassels (new embellishment), a hem (new skill!) and a few beginner-level puckers for authenticity (I just couldn't bring myself to pull it back. HAD. to PUSH. THROUGH!!). Almost makes me want to start a blog to prove it's done and to add the Gold Medal button. Hooray for trying new things and for doing it together!!
Thanks a million for the encouragement and community. GO TEAM!!
I have been having issues with gauge and needle size. So, I switched to a biathlon (sort of): Finish all the knitting on my sister's shawl that should have been done by Christmas, then get to the heel on the first Sock.
And I will be back in '08, going for the gold!
Gosh,I can totally relate. I know all about tactical errors. for example, knit a shawl from the neck down so it's perpetually growing slower rather than decreasing to a fast finish, or how about picking a pattern that requires full attention on BOTH sides! no easy fast purling on the reverse. and then add the whole family getting the flu to really slow you down. But I'm keeping at it, inspired by all the torino olympians.
I do have one suggestion, BOOKS ON TAPE/CD. no looking involved, much less distracting.
You know, I was going to guess Brampton, but the self-doubt won out, and I just didn't do it. Darn.
Ah well, it's okay. I finished my Olympic knitting today, save for weaving in the ends. So I'm still a winner. ;)
I just finished my first pair of lace socks! (Midnight CST) Thank you all for the encouragement in the comments. My sister and I both knit; NOW I know that we have sisters and brothers aaalllll over the world! Yeah team all of us!
Not that the 101st comment will be read, but I have made a plea on my blog on behalf of knithletes everywhere to the IOC to extend the Winter Olympics by two days. I am *sure* that I am important enough that (a) they read my blog and (b) they will do as I ask.
*running off to the dvd rental place to get a bunch of talkie movies*
I don't like using the word class as an evalutation of people, so I'll just say that your appreciation (however kicking and screaming) of the little hem details etc. shows some real good quality. :D
The hardest part so far has been dealing with all our fans, and then the paparazzi. Team College Hill has made the news: http://www.projo.com/lifebeat/content/projo_20060223_knit23.178bd3db.html
Login as email@example.com password: knitting if you're interested.
The sweater is looking fantastic! Hang in there! And I had already discovered the chinese thing. Brain just sees knitting needles these days.... :D
People are going to hate me for this (you know it is bad when I write that), but I feel like I might have chosen the wrong project. My first intarsia and I have the ends to weave and the finishing to do. *ducks*
I have taken the last three or four days to work on some other projects, including the short row capelet thingie in Scarf Style, and am nearly done that as well.
Maybe I will actually get to all of the finishing work for the sweater pile.
this knithlete will not be done by the end of ceremonies - despite performance enhancing substances (Ben and Jerry's, pizza). Salt Peanuts is the selected project and the back is nearly finished. i will press on past these Olympics and perhaps will be done by the next. hopefully sooner. i am pleased with what i've done so far though :)
this knithlete will not be done by the end of ceremonies - despite performance enhancing substances (Ben and Jerry's, pizza). Salt Peanuts is the selected project and the back is nearly finished. i will press on past these Olympics and perhaps will be done by the next. hopefully sooner. i am pleased with what i've done so far though.
MY HUSBAND, A WRITER WAS SO AMUSED BY OUR OPENING CELEBRATION OF THE KNITTING OLYMPICS THAT HE WROTE THIS FOR THE EVENT. (PRETTY GOOD FOR SOMEONE WHO KNOWS NOTHING ABOUT KNITTING.) IF YOU WISH TO ENJOY A GOOD LAUGH, HERE IT IS:
We welcome the world to Anderson Township for tonight’s opening ceremony of the 2006 Knitting Olympics. The Anderson Twp. Knitting Olympic Committee spent more than an hour this afternoon preparing for tonight’s ceremonies. We have spared no expense to ensure the comfort and security of all Olympic Knitters and their pets. We even ran the vacuum twice.
As this will be the first time many of you have participated in Olympic Knitting, the committee felt it was important for you to have a greater appreciation of the magnitude of this event. So, we took valuable time that could have been used for napping to create this commemorative booklet and beer coaster entitled “Great Moments in Olympic Knitting History.”
Enjoy tonight’s opening ceremony and good luck in the competition. And remember our Olympic Knitting Motto which was written just a few hours ago: “Win or lose, the most important thing is that you leave by 10:30… 11 at the latest because we’re really tired.”
Great Moments in Olympic Knitting History
The inaugural Knitting Olympics was held in 1887 at Moose Lodge 487 outside of Sandusky, Ohio. More than 25 women came together to compare knitting skills, share homemade cookie recipes and bitch about their “good for nothing husbands.” What began as a lazy Sunday afternoon activity by the Mothers of Moose Lodge 487, has now grown into a quadrennial international event that happens every four years, give or take. Today, the Knitting Olympics will play host to more than 5,000 knitters representing more than 50 countries, including Kentucky. The Knitting Olympics has grown into one of the premiere events in the hobby and craft world, surpassed only by the Boston Macramé Marathon and the annual StencilStock Festival and Pig Roast outside of Nashville.
To commemorate the opening ceremony of the 2006 Anderson Twp Knitting Olympics, the country’s leading web-site for knitting, Whogivesaknit.com, has compiled this list of the most memorable moments in Olympic Knitting history:
1938: Winds of War
On the heels of Poland’s infamous “Argyll Incident” in1937, the 1938 Knitting Olympics came to Berlin under a cloud of mounting international tension and a shortage of yarn. The ’38 Knitting Olympics were hosted by Eva Braun, the seamstress and mistress of German leader Adolph Hitler, and great grandmother of famous American TV personality Rob Braun. Led by 4-time World Doily Champion, Frau Marta Hess, the powerful German team was expected to dominate the ’38 Olympics. But those ’38 games ultimately belonged to America’s Jessie Lynn Owens of Harlem’s Mt. Zion Baptist Church. Owens, the first African American to participate in the Knitting Olympics, won four gold medals during the two-week event for a Looped Coat, Floral Jacket, Reversible Bag and a fabulous Cable Throw. Owen’s performance single-handedly humiliated the great German squad and ruined Braun’s dream of world knitting dominance for the German’s. Following the closing ceremony, Braun returned home and badgered her lover to invade Poland… but only after he finished cleaning out the garage.
1962: It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World
The ’62 Knitting Olympics in Lubbock, Texas will always be remembered for the breakthrough performance of America’s first male knitting star, Dick Buttonhole. Long-embraced on the International stage, men were increasingly frustrated by their inability to break through the hated “scrotum barrier” that existed in American knitting circles. Peoria's Buttonhole was something of a knitting prodigy, having first “cast on” at the age of two. He became a legend in Peoria during his freshman year in high school when he crocheted all 50 uniforms for the school’s football team in just two weeks. In the face of intense pressure from the leading female knitters of the day, Buttonhole earned a place on the ’62 U.S. team and went on to win three gold medals. His historic Olympic performance was punctuated by a breathtaking “Cap Shaping Bind Off 3 (3,3,4,5) sts. At beg of next two rows-57 (61,65,69,71) sts.” In 1980, Buttonhole because the first male to be enshrined in the Olympic Knitting Hall of Fame at Moose lodge 487 outside of Sandusky, Ohio.
1968: Terror Casts On Wheeling
On the morning of June 12th, 1968 the knitting world awoke to a crisis that would rock the foundation of the Knitting Olympics for years to come. Five Methodist extremists from Tacoma, Washington disguised as Lawrence Welk and The Andrews Sisters slipped past Al, the night watchman at the Wheeling Community Center, and took control of the knitting supply and refreshment room. The extremists, who dubbed themselves The Thread Brigade, placed second in the Tacoma Ecumenical Knit-Off, thus failing to earn a place on the ’68 U.S. Olympic Knitting squad. Through Al, the night watchman at the Wheeling Community Center and newly named spokesman for the Thread Brigade, the group issued a statement saying they would discharge 10 skeins of Rowan Chunky Print Corinthian 083 every hour if they were not added to the U.S. team. The tense, three-hour stand-off ended peacefully when Clyde Vanderhoven, husband of Thread Brigade leader Millie Vanderhoven, called to remind her that they needed to be at the Reinhoff’s that night for their 7PM Canasta game… and that he was a tad hungry and wondered what was for dinner. Based on the events of the ’68 Wheeling Knitting Olympics, the International Olympic Knitting Committee (IOKC) made major revisions to its security efforts, adding at least a second night watchman for all subsequent Knitting Olympic events.
1980: From Russia With Love
The 1980 Wilkes Barre Knitting Olympics began under a cloud of international tension on the heels of Russia’s invasion of Afghanistan. A number of country’s, including Greenland and Cleveland pulled out of the ’80 games. The remaining country’s, at the suggestion of the IOKC, joined together in a show of support for Afghanistan by refusing to participate in the Advanced Afghan competition. The stage was set for a “Cold War Stitch Off” between the U.S. and the mighty Soviet Union team, coached by Sergi Petrovic, known throughout the knitting world as “The Baron of the Babushka.” Inexplicably, two days prior to the opening ceremonies, Petrovic announced that he was leaving the team to be with his lover and future wife, Liza, a 162 pound Rambouillet Sheep. Petrovic met Liza during the Soviet Knitting Team’s World Tour. “We were in New Zealand” Petrovic recalled. “We were in the team bus passing a large herd of Rambouillets and I happened to notice one of the sheep staring in my direction. I stopped the bus and introduced myself to Liza and fell head over hoof in love with her. I tried to wean myself off of her but soon realized that every moment was shear delight… and I didn’t want to be without her.” Petrovic’s sudden departure devastated the Soviet Knitting Team, resulting in a stunning fifth place Olympic finish. Petrovic and Liza married and settled in New Zealand where they have stayed active on the international knitting scene; he as a much-sought-after coach and she as an internet entrepreneur with her popular web-site: ewecanknittoo.com
1984: The Attack!
In a story that shook the knitting world, Team America’s captain and national knitting champion, Nancy Cardigan, was brutally attacked as she left Wilma’s Wool and Wicker Hut in Bethesda, MD. Olympic officials, working in conjunction with the cast of Law and Order DSU (Dropped Stitch Unit) traced the attack weapon, an Addi Turbo 20 inch JumpFlex needle, back to Cardigan’s chief U.S. rival, Tonya Hardly. Hardly confessed to masterminding the attack, saying she became increasingly despondent over Cardigan’s selection as team captain. Though not injured in the attack, Cardigan was really annoyed and decided not to attend the ’84 Knitting Olympics in Duluth. Hardly ultimately left knitting and went into pornography, starring in more than 20 films, including the 1989 cult classic “Knit One, Feel Me Too.”
1998: Extreme Competition
Olympic Knitting competition has traditionally been dominated by women from America’s Bible Belt, Denmark and Croatia. These countries have maintained a stranglehold on the Olympics, ensuring little in the way of change or innovation. However, with changing demographics, power within the knitting establishment began to shift from the traditionalists to a new breed of younger, more rebellious, more attention-challenged knitting elite. The power shift became complete during the ’98 Knitting Olympic games held in the trendy Buckhead section of Atlanta. A number of new events bowed during the Buckhead games, including Xtreme Speed Knitting, Xtreme Knitting Combined (knit one, purl two, shoot at a moving target with a high powered rifle) and Xtreme Downhill Knitting. New names entered the ranks of the knitting elite, such as Mildred Ono and Bodina Wasserstein. With the passing of the ’98 Buckhead games, the face of international Olympic Knitting changed forever.
(Doug Spak, Cincinnati, OH)
Just when i was feeling sorry for myself, I realized that I wasn't the only one stressing about the deadline. I'm a little over half way and if I'd quit working on some UFOs, I'd get my project done. Do you think I can get hubby to take feral #2 (a girl) to a boy scout thing this weekend??
Great job, Stephanie. I wish I had the talent and patience for a Dale...
Woohoooooo!! I just finished this morning. I am a novice knitter so chose something simple (it is kind of ugly too), and then went quite hermit-like until completion. But it is done!! Yay, hurray! Check it out.
Now my family can get back to eating fresh food instead of all those frozen prepared meals.
Okay, I'm not quitting. I want that Gold button for my blog!
I changed what I was knitting before the Olympics started. I didn't want to bother you. So I'll just post it here. I switched from Latvian Mittens to an Alice Starmore children's sweater.
Yes, but what of Galt, Hespler and Preston. The demise of these quaint cities to become Cambridge?
I'm stretching myself to complete my Olympic socks. Not a technical stretch but certainly one that is a stretch of time with my current schedule.
I FINISHED!...My 3 piece Baby Set
and ...IT'S IN THE MAIL! What a feeling! NOW I know this Competition with Self was "a Good Thing". The sewing together at the end of knitting was, and always has been A Real Pain. Swear, swear, swear. However I DID IT! cause I had a deadline. Yeah! for all of us who have or will have FINISHED!!
Greetings to All & thanks! for the IMPETUS (that should now be a Knitting Term.
Jrose, still knitting
...hats, socks, & on & on
The comment about fair isle/feral made me laugh so hard I was glad I wasn't drinking anything.
Go Team DPN!!!! (http://teamdpn.blogspot.com)
I'm boned for finishing by Sunday because I'm down with a cold, but I'll probably be finished next week -- I'm not sure whether to think "my god, these other people can finish fair-isle/cables/lace sweaters in that length of time and you're plodding along with your garter-stitch?", or pause to reflect how damn gigantic this thing is and be pleased that I even got this far with it, considering how ballsed-up my whole first week was with equipment problems... And, BTW? Heartily second the "consider your construction method" notion, since I was clever enough to choose a design that didn't need to be pieced together afterwards and have been feeling rather smug about THAT. :)
Will there be a gallery for late-finishers, y'know, to encourage us to stick with it even if we can't quite make the podium? ;)
I'm still not going to finish. *wahhhhh* I've discovered it's a very bad idea to knit lace after about oh, 11pm. I start making dumb mistakes, then more dumb mistakes when I try to fix the original dumb mistake...
At first, I thought I'd underestimated myself. That's worn off. Between the job, the cooking every night and the freelance work that showed up at the last moment (had to do it... yarn bills to pay...) I've got a back, two front halves and part of a sleeve. One sleeve, a hood, and assembly to go.
So naturally I ran out of yarn. Luckily, white acrylic is easy to replace and I can pick up buttons while I'm at the store. The freelance work is done and the hubby is gone to the New York Comic Con until Sunday.
This means I can get takeout that he doesn't even like! :)
Takeout! That is *much* more practical than meals of Raisin Bran. And I would have been spending less time in the bathroom than I am now.
Although the end of the games is nigh, the end of my knitting is not so nigh. Next time I do lace as a sport, I am picking a pattern that decreases at the end, or at the very least remains a consistent size. This ever-increasing shawl is trying my ever-decreasing patience.
Better yet for number 7. Get Netflix online so that the shows come to you. No leaving the house to pick them up or drop them off thus adding to your knitting time!
Thank you Doug Spak for a wonderful look back at Olympic Knitting - that was great! Very creative and shows a remarkable understanding of the sport. Bet you had some help there...
I can't imagine being brave enough to undertake a Dale sweater for this, Danger in the name or not. I trived on my simple 3x1 ribbing, but maybe it wasn't as gratifying as yours will be. Hrm, now I'm questioning my choice!
Er, does knitting one toe-up sock to just past the short-row heel and then frogging it, then starting a cuff-down sock and knitting to just *before* the heel count as finishing one sock? This may have to count as my not-quite-qualifying year, but it's been fun.
One back, 2 cardigan fronts done, 2 sleeves to go. Hmmmm, I am not so sure it is going to happen. But I will persevere, none the less.
Anyone but me getting the distinct coorelation between Christmas/Holiday knitting and the pressure of Olympic knitting? Do we really need so badly to have stress associated with knitting?
Sometimes the answer is a simple yes.
mmm what number are we on...? my personal rule is, don't try knitting and watching any "pretty" ice skating at the same time...arrrggghh (they are pirate finger*tip*less gloves, so sound effects are appropriate)just breathing and trying to figure out how i was meant to do fingers while keeping up the "feral" stuff was olympic enough for me!!! two thumbs and one finger left.. the gloves are for matt, and today is his birthday! since he's my favorite pirate, i'm gonna cast on a hat for him during closing ceremonies.. thanks so much steph, for the challenge, aren't you just the most clever duck!
Just stopped in to check the day/hour/minute counter so that I can portion out the remaining inches to knit on my sock. I've been amazed at what other people are willing to attempt as their Knitting Olympic challenge. I just wanted to a)not have holes where the heel gusset begins and b)pick up the stitches along the heel flap neatly. Oh, and actually finish something.
The sweater is beautiful. No more need be said, but if you actually spare the time to read all of these comments, you are truly an Olympian.
I am loving that pattern and colours - beautiful !
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I`m done with my Dale olympic sweater I`ve knitted in the Knitting Olympics. Gold! What do we do when we`re done with our projects to get the goldmedal for our blogs? You can have a look at my finished sweater in my blog if you want to. Yours is really wonderful, great work...
Shelley? This isn't a billboard for your business -- let alone twice in one posting's comments. Stop it.
GOLD MEDAL ACHIEVED! I finished my Pomatomus socks this morning. It's been fun!
I'm close to feeling the thrill of victory. I committed to making one fair isle (feral???) mitten and I'm at the decreases at the top. That, the thumb and about 65 ends to sew in (grrrr...). I have started the cuff of mitten 2 and will continue on even after the closing ceremonies. The Rainbow Mittens are really neat and I want to have a pair, so no SMS for me, thanks! After all, it's so cold (coughcough) here in the San Francisco area that I really need mittens (coughcough).
I "lost" 3 full days to Stitches West in the middle of this, too. Couldn't knit. Can you believe that? Too much time spent walking around the market for 2 days (don't ask about what the charge bill will look like this month), then the third day in a Bohus knitting class, knitting on the class sample. What a kick that was!
Steph, you are a genius and the Pied Piper rolled into one. Guess that makes the rest of us inspired lemmings, doesn't it? Much better than stash weasles. Thanks ever so much for the challenge. I certainly did need it to keep going beyond my comfort zone.
Ah, see, my husband has switched the massage/rub down on me. He says I should be able to knit (or loom in this case) while rubbing his back with my heels.
(He gets deep knots, so yeah, I use my feet. And it saves my hands/wrists for knitting! :) )
Had to LOL about Bramalea, because when I asked hubby about growing up in Brampton (to make sure I had said the right thing in my comment), his reply was "well, really it was Bramalea".
You endlessly amuse me and on this day in particular when I was in dire need of amusement I so appreciated it. I knew better then to be an Olympian with many other artistic deadlines looming, but I love sharing in the stories. And the sweater is gorgeous! How can you be so darn funny and so darn talented and gracious and kind and smart? Thanks for sharing it! Met you in San Diego and am in awe of your writing and your humor and your knitting.
i live & knit in brampton, where i am forced to plan excursions to toronto for yarn (if i don't want to knit expensive acrylic garments). nice to know that one can survive knitting in brampton and go on to bigger things.
Steph you are knitting faster than the speed of sound and making good progress. I have still a sleeve to do, sew the sleeves to the body and sew on the buttons and I am knitting a cardigan for a five year old with only two colours. We CAN DO IT. Knit knit knit knit
Here's the thing about sick days: they don't help if you're actually sick! I spent three days last week at home with a nasty cold, but spent the vast majority of the time sleeping; I don't think I got in more than two hours per day, vs. the 4-5 hours I can manage on a workday evening (assuming my husband cooks).
Glad to hear that food delivery has improved in TO. When I lived there in 1993-5, getting Chinese food deliveries was a major problem for this displaced New Yorker. The speed record was 45 minutes from the time I put down the phone until the doorman called. In New York, you've barely put the phone down before the delivery man comes. I've been told they use astral projection to get there so fast.
Of course, you can use the wait time to do a bunch of rounds!
I'm LOL'ing over the Bramalea/Brampton thing. I still go home to Bramalea, and my mother gets so hopping mad when I tell people she lives in Brampton! "NO, I live in Bramalea."
Its a small world... nice to see some natives of my home town! :)
Hmmm, do we report someplace that we have finished our goal--I actually finished 3 days ago. I made my 16 items for the Dulaan Project. Where is me gold, hehehe
I did it! I have now officially knit my very first pair of socks!!! Of course they fit my daughter, not me - but hey, I wouldn't let her join the Olympics because of homework, so I suppose there's some justice in there (somewhere!).
Thanks for a great idea - and for pushing me to give socks a try!
I did it! I finished the hooded sweater for my grandson in 12 days.....now my grandaughter needs one too!
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