October 17, 2011
In which there is a little trouble
This post comes to you from a hotel room in Brooklyn, where I'm quietly recovering from Rhinebeck and the travels so far- drinking coffee and getting ready for the reading and signing tonight in Park Slope. (Who's coming?) I had, as always, a wonderful time at Rhinebeck, and signed lot of books and met tons of knitters, and saw old friends and made new ones. The signing was as entertaining as it always is. I know that you'd think that it would be a little monotonous, sitting for a couple of hours, writing your name in books, but I have the good fortune to be doing this with Knitters, which means something interesting always happens. Meet Claudia - the first knitter in line.
Posted by Stephanie at October 17, 2011 12:35 PM
Claudia had a real commitment to being first in line, and cracked me up with her enthusiasm for the process. I think you can see from her lovely face that she's as much fun as is possible - and she had everyone in her vicinity smiling- including me. I'm smiling now thinking about her, she's totally a gift that keeps on giving.
There were babies. (You know how I love the smallest of people.)
That's Amanda and the charming Theo. (Amanda was charming too. She's the tall one. Theo's the one in the amazing monster pants.)
Finally there was Bobbie from Maine - who brought her own paparazzi, and showed of her hand dyed, hand spun and hand knit socks. She's one of those overachievers.
I saw some wonderful things too. The fleece sale, a goat who wouldn't go...
The new Rav babies (I love how baby Carson looks like he's saying "For crying out loud, I'm not even a knitter. Why am I here? I'm so totally bored")
Mary-Heather's breasts (she was actually showing the inside of her sweater, but it was a better moment my way)
Anne Hanson and Amy Herzog sharing a clear love of green,
Sheep, alpacas, a lamb with the best spot...and so much more.
What then you ask, what was the trouble? Glad you asked.
Shortly after Kellee picked me up at the airport and we went to WEBS (because we are not stupid. Who goes within striking distance of WEBS and doesn't go?)
And then in the parking lot we the bad luck of a dead car battery:
and the good luck of a rescue from Debbi and Marcy, who just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
I know. They both look unbelievably happy about a dead car battery in the rain. What can I say. We were at WEBS. It's the happiest place on earth.
Right after that we went to a restaurant for lunch, and over lunch I was showing her and Amy my sweater (parts) and saying how I just had to sew it up now, so everything was going to be fine, right after that...I was spreading the sweater out on the table when I noticed something funny about the cast-on edge of the right front. It was a little dark, and slightly frayed. Perplexed, I flipped it over to look, because it looked absolutely fine from the front, and immediately the world went a little dark around the edges. The night before, when the sweater parts had been in the oven drying, I had smelled burning hair for a minute. I ran to the oven, saw nothing wrong except for a tail of the yarn that was touching the bottom of the stove... assumed that was it, and carried on. I suppose I should have taken a better look, because somehow, though the rest of the parts are perfect, there is one small area of scorch on the sweater front.
I took several deep breaths, hoping it was cosmetic, but as I handled the sweater, that portion essentially disintegrated into a little pile of Shelter ash. I couldn't believe it. I've dried A MILLION things in the oven, and never has this happened and clearly this time something went horribly wrong and I'll (probably) never do it again... but all of that was irrelevant in that moment. I took a deep swig of my beer, tried not to cry in front of Amy and Kellee, and formulated a plan. I would do what I could to stabilize that part - essentially with a patch and some duplicate stitch, and when Rhinebeck was over, I would cut off the ribbing of the sweater on the front - pick up the stitches, and knit down. This idea got me through until that evening, when having made the repairs as best I could, and hanging out with my buddies,
(It's not pretty, but it would keep it from unravelling more...) I sewed in the first very pretty sleeve,
and then started to match up the front and back along the side seam. They wouldn't match. I started easing it along, wondering if my blocking was imperfect, and tried again... this time being more careful about pinning them together. Still not right. It just wouldn't go together. Now, I'd had a glass of wine and a long day, and if you get up at 5am and travel and then discover you've immolated a sweater front, you're bound to be off your game, so I tried again... then again, then in frustration, lay the pieces down to try AGAIN. That's when I saw it.
Both fronts (because I measured them off of each other) are 10 centimeters (that's four inches) shorter than the back.
I lost it. I disguised the heartbroken sobs as laughter (which came out as very, very crazy laughter - I could tell by the looks on my friends faces) they tried to come up with solutions, probably so that I would stop laughing like that. There was "That sh*t will block right out" (which ALWAYS means that sh*t will NEVER block out) there was the option of shortening the back (which sadly would have left me with a Rhinebeck belly sweater) the idea of somehow pulling out the ribbing and knitting down four inches on both pieces, which was attractive because I already had to sort of do that to deal with the part I'd tried to light fire too... but that would mean that the cables on the front and back weren't the same anymore.... and the suggestion that perhaps I could "ease that right in" while seaming. (We all knew that wouldn't work the second we heard it, but you have to at least consider it for a moment.)
After a sad 10 minutes exploring options, I realized two things. I'm an idiot- and that I was going to have to pull back and re-knit half of one front, adding the extra four inches before the armhole, and reknit the entire other front, because once a piece is four inches too short AND has a disintegrating portion of the ribbing because you accidentally burned it in the oven because you can't plan ahead properly... it probably deserves a second chance at life entirely, and so that's what I'm doing. I've already re-knit the front that wasn't burned and it's drying (on the air-conditioner here in the hotel. I'm not taking any chances) and I'll tackle the other front this evening. I could still have a sweater in a few days, assuming I don't run out of yarn.
So that, my friends, is the answer to the question that a hundred knitters asked me on Saturday when I wasn't wearing a Rhinebeck sweater.
I had a little trouble.
Dagnabit! At least you got to see the llamas.
Good for you for not chucking it into a closet for a year before reknitting, which is what I did with my too-big-and-shapeless Klaralund. It's gonna be beautiful when you're done!
Yay! I can't wait to see you in Dallas this weekend!
I'm speechless. You handled it much better than I would have. And I TOTALLY would have told you it would block out. While ordering you another very large drink.
Wow. Hang in there.
Well - you get an A+ for effort anyway... So sorry the sweater gave you some 'issues'.
I am so sad for your travails, but once more they allow me to realize you are not the complete goddess I think you are. It allows me to realize that the absolutely stupid mistakes I make knitting are what bind us (yes, I see the pun!) together in this world of knitting. We are, after all, not machines, but people distracted by our lives and unfortunately sometimes our lovely knitting bears the brunt of it. What I have learned from you is to keep plugging on. Good lessons for life and knitting. Thanks again for sharing.
Oh. My. God.
I thought you were joking about drying it in the oven.
The other part; making the fronts and back different lengths? I can totally understand that.
Sorry. Good luck. Hope to see you in Minnesota before too long. Wearing the sweater.
Doesn't a sheep in a Rubbermaid pretty much make everything ok?
OMG, that is almost as heartbreaking as the time you knit two beautiful colourwork mittens for the same hand.
My,my it just proves that you are human like the rest of the knitters that make mistakes. I know when I see you for the very first time, you will be wearing the beautiful sweater and I sincerely hope you don't call it "the sweater from hell"!
See you soon!
I could cry just reading your story. Seriously. If it weren't 10 a.m. here in the Pacific Time Zone, I'd have a glass of wine to ease your pain.
The parts of that sweater that are good are really good. I trust you completely to make a beautiful sweater out of that (mess) while on the road no less! I love how willing you are to humble yourself to all us knitters who admire you. I mean, you really are stellar at your job of 'knitting humour writer and speaker'. And to think you totally created that niche yourself just gives me a happy warm feeling.
I would have wadded up the whole thing, hurled it across the room, then tried to tear it into little bitty pieces while planning my suicide. You're a stronger woman than I am. Do you remember where you got the yarn? Would it be possible to track down an extra skein just in case?
Hope to see you in Brookline!
I just yelled "SHE BURNED HER SWEATER!" at my two miniature poodles, who then looked at me with cocked heads as if to ask "is this something we really should be worried about?" Then, a few moments later, I shrieked "the fronts aren't long enough!!" Now the poodles are appropriately concerned on your behalf.
The weird thing is that I was just in the one gift store in my tiny town of 300 on the California north coast -- the owner told she'd had a really bad day because her brother almost burned her elderly parents' house down. Apparently he decided to "dry out" pine cones in the oven while his parents were gone, but forgot about them. I get why you put your sweater in the oven, but the pine cones are beyond me!
oh....my. (stunned and commiserating silence)... i am so glad when you get it wrong. cos if even YOU can get it wrong, then it must be ok for lesser knitters to get it wrong sometimes too. except in my case, i wouldn't even know how to go about fixing it and would just have to give up completely!
The sweater must have gotten mad that you were already looking at lace before finishing it. And there are 1,000+ knitters praying that the yarn holds up to the end!
I'm with Connie who just posted above--I could also just cry and scream and pitch a real hissy fit just reading your story. But you are a real trooper and are going about fixing the problem professionally. In one post you have shown us that everyone makes knitting mistakes and sometimes we do have to cry over our "spilt milk" and then go about fixing the mistakes. What an inspiration.
I'm ashamed to say how much I laughed at your tale of woe, only you have a way of bringing humour to the most horrific stories. However, it sounds as though you are right back in the saddle and moving forward. Do let us know how you feel about the "Shelter" 'cause I'm thinking of ordering some for myself (but not in pumpkin spice--what will look fab on you would make me look sick). Can't wait to see the sweater.
I believe the ovens held a revolt this weekend. Carin, from a podcast called Round the Twist, had a horrible incident with an oven and a Kauni cardigan.
Hope the rest of the book tour goes without incident!
wait! Isn't this the point where you decide that the short fronts are a Design Element NOT a (deep breath) mistake? Isn't it cool these days to have the backside longer than the front? I'll swear I've seen it that way in those fancy clothing catalogs, really!
wow. i really thought you'd get it done right in the nick of time but somehow this makes more sense.
Rhinebeck looks like an incredible weekend!
In spite of your "technical difficulties", your sweater looks amazing.
I would still be crying/screaming about it, or perhaps would have attempted to light the entire sweater on fire. Good for you. You are resilient, and creative. As a reward for your efforts, buy yourself more of that splendid Shelter wool - they have the BEST colours.
A little trouble, indeed. I know it pretty much defeats the purpose of knitting a sweater, but when you're done, you might want to bronze it as a monument to persistence.
I would have flung it around the backyard three times and run down the street in frustration. i don't drink anymore, that's the best i can do now!
Anything that I can bring you in Baltimore to make it better (or make you feel better about it) just let me know!! Can't wait to see you there!
If it were me, the whole sweater would be in time out.. or at least in the mail to someone else who might take pity on me and frog what needed to be frogged.
I could probably look at in in 6 months... you are a strong woman Steph... but you're right.. in the scope of live.. this is a little trouble. travel safely.
Awww, thanks. This was even more entertaining than I could have hoped for. Really.
And this is why beer was invented....
So glad when you have shared such a story. I think of the several (many...) items I have made over the years that have suffered similar 'misdirections'. So reassuring and comforting to hear I am not alone.
Like the friend knitting her first pair of socks (top down) who, when she came to the heel 'forgot' to set aside the instep stitches. Nice tube - not so good for socks.
Wow, it never rains but it pours! Another instance of the tape measures lying - even though I'm sure you measured and measured and measured again, those lousy tape measures didn't tell the truth. I suggest what the Romans used to do: line up as many as you can put your hands on, then chose the tenth one and snip it to shreds in front of the rest. Decimation! (Metric tape measures respond especially well to decimation, I've heard.)
You poor thing! I would have completely lost my shit if that had happened to me :( I'm sorry! Your sweater is so pretty though, and I'm sure it will all work out.
I hope you have a better day today!
Just have another brew, enjoy your time away and tell the universe its next year's Rhinebeck sweater, Easy. Take the load off.
Yikes! You get the Blue Ribbon (maybe make that a Pabst's Blue Ribbon) for perseverance! (You can never count on an oven...)
Loved the Anne Hanson spotting! I'm making her Inky Dinky Jacket, and Hat, for a beloved babe, and it is by far the most challenging and beauteous thing I've ever knit.
Someone else said, & I concur: you're a stronger woman than I am. I would have thrown that stupid thing in the oven & turned the temp to broil. Then I would have thrown its ashes in the trash while I pulled my hair out & stamped my feet. At least you'll have a sweater after you fix it. I'd just have bald patches, sore feet & a really dirty oven.
You are a trooper! Bravo to your determination to get it right. Once you wear that sweater, you deserve every stitch of it & more!
I'm working really hard to expect myself to screw something up while I'm knitting. Because, usually if I'm feeling smug, turns out I've *really* messed things up. Your story reinforces my desire to ingrain messed up expectations.
That's one load of "a little trouble;" just holy f-ing $h**.
(You people who will see her soon and wonder what to bring her - BEER or WINE people - I can't believe you have to ask!!) ;)
I don't know how you're even sane enough to write this post, as I was starting to hyperventilate as I read this post!
That's heartbreaking! I'm so sorry to hear it.
My Rhinebeck sweater was a bright teal belted number out of the squishiest bulky yarn ever. I paired it with a Lanesplitter skirt (there were a lot of people staring at my rear end). Rhinebeck sweater #2 was a grey elbow-length cashmere-merino blend. I felt very pleased with myself, if over-heated. I had a fantastic Rhinebeck this year.
Plus, friends brought me Coffee Crisps. That makes me happy.
So, my good knitter friend and I got up at and started our journey from the wild's of Vermont to Rhinebeck as we do every year. But this year, we did it at 5 instead of 7. Why you ask? Well, there was no way in hell we were going to miss seeing you.
We schlepped along making good time, because, you see, we were on a mission: a very important thank you. A LYS did a NICU hat drive. Sounds fairly routine, because knitters like to knit and babies need hats, right? Well, I happen to be a knitter and a NICU nurse. The our NICU recently experienced a cluster of unexpected and tragic baby deaths. Gong to work recently has been hard.
Those tiny hats, which clearly were made with great care, soft little cupcakes and pumpkins and flowers...well, they have been helping us all go to work and brightening our days when we are there. They make parents smile and nurses laugh.
Making good time it was, until we ran smack dab into traffic that meant we made it 2 miles in 40 minutes. I nearly ditched the car to walk and kept frantically knitting a bootie (which I realized later was totally wonky, but it served it's purpose). Finally, my intrepid pilot pulled some sort of GPS magic and rerouted us. We flew into Rhinebeck on 2 wheels...at 12:15.
We parked and I gave up my goal of meeting you and asking for an odd random signature. Linda though, she dragged me around the back of the building, we snuck through a back door and dashed over to the table that I was sure would be empty. BUT>>>there you were!! I walked over and handed you a framed thank you to our local knitters and blurted out about you signing this instead of my Kindle. And you did.
I am usually articulate and a big part of me would have loved to ramble on and on, waxing poetic about how reading your writing has been cathartic for me, makes me laugh, and touches my life in ways you can not even imagine. About how grateful I am that our community has such a strong and articulate writer.
But really, I am okay with the special signature we got. Thanks for staying. You have no idea what that meant.
I wasn't wearing a new Rhinebeck sweater either. I could have been, if I were two sizes smaller (I did mention the gauge swatch LIED, didn't I?) (also - and I hate to admit it - I completely fooled myself at many steps along the way).
Damned knitting. Remind me why we knit, again? This is supposed to be fun, right?
Also: it's a good book. A very good book. I completely agree with your proposition that knitting is fun when it's right in between so boring you fall asleep and so intricate you burn it and knit 4 inches too little during stressful times - I just wish there were more times when the knitting would hit that sweet spot.
But, wait, what did you wear to Rhinebeck? Didn't you say you weren't bringing another sweater?
Oh, my. I'm having anxiety for you. I'm sure everything will eventually turn out all right. However, I also understand the temptation to stuff the remains of the sweater into the back of a closet and let it marinade for a while. That is why I have half an intrelac shawl in the bottom of my yarn drawer.
You know that that sweater has its own personality by now and any time you ever wear it people are going to be high-fiveing you on subduing that bad boy.
By the way--maybe hairdryers are a better idea?
I don't know what I was more shocked at - everything that went wrong with your sweater or the fact that you have reknitted one front already! This would be sitting in my basket (i.e. things I can't bear to look at) for a really long time before I tackled it again.
Amazing work, well done!
DUDE!!! And that's why I hardly ever finish anything...the fear of that sort of thing happening right there!! I have three sweaters just languishing in various stages of knit, and I can't bear the thought of sewing them up after blocking them and having the oh $%&@! moments you just described.
PS: Just snorted a soda through my medulla oblongata over the whole "You can block that sh*t right out" comment. I'm going to try that for various situations around the house today.
The cat puked.
You can block that sh*t right out.
I have a papercute.
You can block that sh*t right out.
Can't wait to use it on the hubby.
What a story! I admire your tenacity in going back to fix the sweater without putting it into a sealed bag and leaving it timeout for six months first.
You are now, as you have always been, my hero. You dealing with 'a little trouble' on your knitting is an education in how to handle life's hiccups. You are a solid class act. I was ready to compliment the sweater at Rhinebeck, but was not surprised not to see it. I figured (many) others would ask and you would post an educational and entertaining update. Thanks.
”Knit on, with confidence and hope, through all crises.” — Elizabeth Zimmerman
I am so sorry for your sweater troubles but so proud you'll keep going. I would have set it in the naughty corner and gotten back to it next year, when I possibly was not feeling so frustrated with it. Good for you, having power over the knitting rather than letting it get the best of you.
I'm am sorry for your troubles! I feel a bit guilty that I am taken comfort in the fact thatn the most seasoned knitter still makes mistakes and I'm not the only one who has those "Doh" moments!
I hope everything comes together for you nicely! Have a great trip.
Oh honey, I'm so sorry! (that always helps when my mom says it to me.)
Thanks for the Rhinebeck photo update. I've never been, and was really needing some vicarious Rhinebeck today.
Oh wow..... If I make it up to Portland I'll bring beer for you. You totally deserve it after all that. And maybe chocolate cake as well...
The fact that you've already re-knit the one front after that series of -- "discoveries" proves that you're one helluva knitter. Had it been me, you would have found me at this point in a corner, weeping intermittantly, and knitting a plain stockinette sock -- in worsted weight.
Hang tough & here's hoping the Knitting Fates will overlook you for a good long while.
Oh. My. I am so, so sorry this happened. But I must admit it makes me feel so much better about my own knitting, which seems sadly prone to suffering from my stupidity.
Honestly I can't stop laughing.....sorry
BUT think about it you have a GREAT true story,you will laugh at this some day soon AND you will still finish the sweater.
Hopefully before the 1st snow(I live in Canada)
Oh MAN!! This is almost right up there with your day of identical mittens and locked out of the houseness! Off to rip out something that simply won't block out dammit.
Sweet Jesus, what the hell?! For what it's worth, your sweater, though charred and unraveling, is still gorgeous.
And I'm with Erin C on the latest Harlotism. Dissertation, unruly dog, messy kitchen...you can block that sh&t right out!
I hate to say it, but I think its *because* you didn't bring another sweater. If this one knew it had competition, it would have behaved and not been such a prima donna. Hopefully you can re-use the yarn.
My heart goes out to you. I think your plan to suck it up and redo the front is the best one. The other options would not have looked right, and you would have disliked that sweater every time you looked at it if you had not simply redone the short side.
Hang in there. You will look back on this and (?) laugh some day (?)
I've done stuff like that, I can't tell you how often. It seems to go with the territory. My usual reaction is to shut the whole disaster out of my mind & forget about it, which works only temporarily. Then I am compelled to go fix it. At which point things turn out fine.
I once had to rip out the entire back of a coat worked in intarsia because it came out too small. I redid the whole thing & the recipient loves it. Any time something bad happens to me now, I remember that coat to remind myself that I can deal with anything after that.
A) I'm sorry the badness happened.
B) I feel better knowing you make mistakes in knitting too.
C) Your story is only really, really, funny, like spit your drink out your nose funny, because you knit like the wind and will be able to reknit it in no time, where I would have spent three years on it and cried for a week over it and given up. That would have been really sad.
i wondered too, but figured you weren't wearing it for some good reason and asking you would only force you to relive a bummer moment.
i'm glad i didn't ask!
but, as i'm sure you know (and hundreds of other knitters will tell you), the feeling of triumph you will feel when you conquer this sweater will be that much more amazing.
i'm glad you didn't give up.
You are a woman of strength and fortitude - which may very well come from you being a knitter. After that experience there are few people who could carry on with knitting that sweater at all - but look at you go!
You know, this is probably the fundamental reason why I love reading your blog. I've been knitting since I was 9 (I'm 43 now) and I have done some really stupid stuff. The worst was knitting ALL of the pieces of Kaffe Fassett's "Tumbling Blocks" pullover only to realize that I hadn't gone to the larger sized needles after the ribbing on the two sleeves, which I of course knit at the same time 'cause that's what my mama taught me. And even though you are a better knitter than I will ever be, you still do stupid things, too! It gives a person hope when knitting shame and humiliation looms. I am very very sorry that you are tasting that bitter disappointment, but I know you will end up with a beautiful sweater. Me? The Kaffe Fassett fiasco actually stopped me knitting for 6 years, and I've still never tried to reknit it.
Oh My - all the way down here in North Dakota I am sick to my stomach for you.
You are strong. You are smart. You will beat this sweater.
However, it doesn't have to be right now - a little time-out has been earned by this one!
I was hoping to meet you tomorrow night in Massachusetts as you'll only be a little over an hour from my home but by the time I would get out of work and get there, it would be just about over. Luckily, for me, I'm on vacation with my mom next week (who is also a knitter), so we'll see you next Wednesday in Pasadena!
Oh my goodness. Well, it's going to be beautiful once it's finished. And if it makes you feel any better, you've inspired me! Gwendolyn is next up in my queue, I have the yarn from GMS's Vermont fundraiser waiting, but I have to finish my Aftur first and so I'm knitting faster than ever before because if you can finish (nearly) all that cabling in practically no time flat, surely I can finish a stockinette-in-the-round sweater by Thanksgiving, right?
O Yarn Harlot, you have outdone yourself! Not only in making operatic and tragicomic mistakes that cause blog readers to shriek aloud in sympathy--but in bouncing back from them inspirationally. I can't believe you've already reknitted that burnt sweater half. Maybe I'll see you in it at the book signing in Baltimore on Wednesday? We can but hope!
I admit I was super curious whether you had finished the sweater--even checked around online to see if anyone else had blogged Rhinebeck and snapped a picture of you in it (yes, I do have a life; I just was not tending to it properly). Since you hadn't posted, I figured there'd be a story. But not this amazing a story! Oh well, the worse the knitting disaster, the better the blog fodder--right?
Can't wait to see you again (I'm even bringing my husband) and to read the new book.
I guess the best that could be said is that you are due for a dose of massively good knitting karma.
You will never know how heartened I am that you can make these knitting mistakes. Whenever I make a mistake and get really frustrated I myself I just remind myself that it happens to you too.
Ouch. It could not have felt great to be explaining to knitters over and over again what happened to your Rhinebeck sweater. Of course, stories like this are part of what made your books the fun essays we read over and over again.
Good luck on sweater 1.5!
I have to admit I kinneared you at Rhinebeck. Shamelessly. I would do it again.
I'm so sorry for your troubles! But like Jeannette, I feel better about my own knitting upsets, when I see that you have a little trouble from time to time also. Thanks for being so inspiring and so human!
That is the absolute saddest knitting story I've ever heard. I feel a bit sick, actually. Poor sweater. Poor Steph.
So when you get this done for an event on this tour, you'll probably get a standing ovation, just for wearing it. Also, it has to be done soon, because you didn't bring another sweater. No time out for Shelter!
Oh dear! Thanks for sharing your Rhinebeck sweater story. I've known my share of knit tragedy in the past and I feel your pain, I though am a coward that hid my foibles under my bed. When your sweater front and back didn't match, I had a painful flashback of my own that I still can't talk about :( In happier news, I can't wait to meet you Tuesday in Brookline!
Gosh, it's nice to know you're human. THANK YOU!!!!
I have had cause to laugh the scary laugh myself - it isn't pretty and it isn't fun. Your equanimity is very impressive, as is your knitting speed. May all future projects indeed block right out.
When I read your sweater trouble with the burning, I admit that I hyperventilated a bit in sympathy.
When it got to the short vs long part, my husband wanted to know why I sounded like I was mourning. I read him the story....
My husband suggests that it's possible to drown a series of unfortunate knit accidents in alpaca. I haven't tried it myself, but it sounds like a good possibility!
I'm echoing Jennifer!!! Thank you thank you thank you!!! I saw that sweater - something I wouldn't have finished the first sleeve of in the time that you attempted to do all of it - and thought "I want to be the Yarn harlot when I grow up". Then I proceeded to have a lousy two weeks of knititng where I couldn't knit garter stitch to save my life. I put some projects on time out, I had several lie-downs, some wine, some deep breaths, but still felt crappy about being a stoopid knitter. And then I read this, and feel so much better, and really just want to hug you and say you're the greatest. And I still want to be you when I grow up.
You are the best of troopers. Go you!
Your weekend sounds like my homecoming. I am sure that, being the awesome knitter you are, you will have the sweater repaired and re-knitted in absolutely no time, ready to model by mid-week!
Wow! You are my hero! I can't believe that in the face of an Adversity of Epic Proportions, you have already reknit one front! Rock on, Harlot!
Oh that sucks SO. BAD. I'm pretty positive that if I had that happen to me I'd be pretty tempted to just throw the thing out.
Ms. Yarn Harlot - I am so so sorry for your sweater mishap but the good news is that it is not all a loss and that you will go forth and rework it to perfection! Perfection Indeed!
Now - as for Rhinebeck ! I am so so sorry and sad I did not get to get to see you and have a book signed by you - it was my first place I was to go to! To see you! I live an hour from Rhinebeck, left early and when I crossed over the bridge - a ten minute drive to the fairgrounds took almost 2 hours - there was so much traffic - I was so heartbroken - It was 12noon by the time we entered into the Festival. Your signing was over and I was beside myself :(
I guess I will have to hope and pray you will be there next year. I am going on Saturday! It is on my calendar!! Darn it!!!
Oh no! I've had nothing like the disintegrating part, but when I realized that I'd messed up the sleeve caps on both sleeves of my first sweater I had nothing like your resolve. I threw both sleeves as well as the rest of the sweater across the room and did not look at it for at least a month. I’m sure by the time I see you in Austin you could be wearing your beautiful sweater, except that it’s still to hot to wear one here.
You are in Brooklynm so be sure to get more Brooklyn Tweed Shelter yarn. Also, I have always been amazed that you havenever before burned a sweater. My own sweater disaster was putting a cobblestone pullover into the dryer on delicate for just 5 minutes so my husband could wear it later that day. Who knew that the merino/alpaca blend could felt in 5 minutes? And you can't just rip it out and start over . . .
That monster butt is just totally happy-making.
I smiled at the happy things . . . and then almost cried with you about the sweater. Knitting is very good about teaching us life lessons. Sigh . . . May the rest of your book tour go more smoothly, Stephanie.
Once again, your honesty is really encouraging for those of us who are very familiar with such events. And so is your perseverance. (I literally feel naseous when that happens to me.) Can't wait to see the finished product!!
I'm Sorry... I laughed a little at this... not that I think your plight funny (it is intensely sad and I know exactly what I would have done in your shoes... thrown it all in the garbage!) but the way you write about it is just so witty.
I'm glad that you can recover from this booboo and can bring something positive from it. I love the way you write :)
I literally gasped out loud at the burnt sweater part and had to make sure that people around me knew that everything was (in their world) ok. Maybe you will have your sweater on when I get to Barnes and Noble on Wednesday evening. I can't wait!
I think we may have seen that one coming, when you posted earlier about using the oven to dry things,(reminds of ironing schoolwork when they have gotten wet or crumpled)You will rise above this as you are the creme ala creme of knitters. Hope to see you in Madison, soon?
Whenever I go to WEBS (not as often as I'd like, but more often than is good for my budget) I like to eat at the Northampton Brewery.
This year was my first Rhinebeck, and my friend and I made the mistake of just day-tripping rather than making a weekend of it. Next year, we'll know better.
But we did stop in at the Northampton Brewery on the way home. And waved to WEBS as we went by.
Hope you haven't ripped out the fronts yet. There may be a better way. Seems to me you might be able to start two new fronts from the bottom, knit the ribbing followed by the cable pattern long enough to make the four inches needed plus rows in pattern to meet the already knitted part at a convenient row. Then pick out and remove the bottoms of the "wrong" fronts at that convenient row and graft the new lengths on. The tricky part would be grafting while switching from knits to purls in pattern--you sure don't want to try it at the cable twist row. Is is even thinkable? If anyone could graft a smooth enough row, it would be you!
Love all the Rhinebeckery. Someday I'll be there!
How awful! Such a beautiful sweater too!
I make up excuses to go to webs and it's a good 140mi/225km away. quick, i need an excuse for tomorrow. ;)
sorry about the sweater... i've now knitted my first and last sweater in pieces and from here on i'm going top-down seamless. steeks are a much better way to go.. still scary (thinking about it makes hives contemplate an appearance) but uhm... i think i like all my sweaters as pullovers, right? ;)
if traffic behaves this afternoon I hope to see you tonight.
Laughing MAO because you were worried about not bringing buttons and becasue an expert like you can make the same kind of mistakes I make every day (just call me Froggie the Tink - er). Haste makes waste is the story of my life and never works out. For me the joy of knitting is in NOT RUSHING but rather in the pleasure of each and every stitch, no matter how many times I must knit them. Relax - your real fans will be happy just to see the finished product on the blog.
You will not need wool in Texas this weekend.
Will. Not. Need. Wool.
Blocking magic in size always works on lace, but rarely sweaters in my opinion. Making them less wrinkly and better shaped? Sure, but sizing is all gauge. Which may be why I own so many shawls and so few sweaters. Shawl gauge is pretty fluid, but the shape of my upper body is a whole different problem.
Somehow, I think Broolyn Tweed needs to weigh in on the case of the disintergrating fiber.
Or, at the very least, take pity on you and provide you with a few additional skeins. :)
I was thinking you could just have a sweater that was longer in the back than the front, but since you didn't want a belly button sweater ...
I'm rooting for both you and the sweater, what is finished looks wonderful and it will be a very special post-Rhinebeck sweater for the struggle!
Could you use a large decorative sofa pillow made of knitted cabled panels in a patchwork design?
My house has many unplanned knitted pillows.
Ouch. That is all kinds of painful. Sorry to hear, but there are some bright sides:
You're doing a bang up job of creating material for your next book while promoting the current one. Gold star.
Knitters everywhere now believe that, despite regular demonstrations of knitting superpowers, you could possibly be human.
Finally, lots of sympathy beers purchased by well-wishers.
Could be worse, I'm almost sure of it.
This will be very, very little consolation to you, but it is nice to hear that an accomplished knitter such as yourself occasionally has a problem with a sweater. It gives me hope and makes me feel like maybe I'm not a moron. So, thank you. Knit on!
Yarn Harlot! You give me strength- you have answered the age old question, will the world end if you knit a whole sweater and something goes horribly wrong? I am so impressed that you kept on trucking with this sweater and haven't given up. We are Knitters and we won't let 8 inches and a little scorched yarn get in the way of a beautiful sweater! This makes the thought of knitting a sweater a lot less scary for me.
As a newbie knitter, working on my first baby sweater, you are letting me know it is okay to mess up, rip out, start over, or change the design. I am a perfectionist too, so that says a lot! Thank you.
Yeowch. That oven drying trick always continues successfully until a casualty. Find one of those racks that fits inside your dryer and you won't get burned again.
Oh, I just exclaimed out loud when I saw the picture of the fronts and the backs. (good thing the offices near me are empty today). What an awful moment. But you have the right idea - just jump right back on the horse before you think about it too much and all will be well. Heck, you could have it finished by the weekend!
Oh honey, I'm so sorry! When (if?) this sweater is done, though, I bet you will love it more than any one you have...because you've been through so much with it. Knit on and get some rest on this tour!
Thank you so much for teaching us we should not take ourselves too seriously. And that we can always screw something up more than we think we ever can.
PS I probably would have set the whole thing on fire and picked out a new sweater.
I took the exact same lamb in rubber maid tote picture. It was all I could do not to bring it home with me - just not sure what my husband's reaction would be to me bringing home a tub of lamb.
You. Are. My. Hero.
I have cried and actually wailed at smaller 'opportunities'.
From now on, with every dropped stitch, every mis-measured sleeve, every time I get 'lost' in the maze that lace knitting can be...I will think of you and this sweater and realize that all will be well in the end.
Best wishes on your book tour...hoping to see you in Maryland!
I would be lying if I said I didn't tear up a bit for the sweater. If you need a hug, I will provide it in person in Seattle. But--Rhinebeck looked like the perfect distraction! I love the monster bootie pants!
OH MY G!!!!! You need a hug, and a strong beverage. When this happens to me I throw it all in the garbage and try to forget it ever happened. You have amazing patience and persistence. Good luck!
When you crash-and-burn, Steph, you sure do it in SPECTACULAR fashion. You are the absolute best, best, best. Thank God for you! I made the mistake of reading today's post whilst eating my lunch at my desk. A bit of a spectacular event on its own. You are unique and precious in all the world!
OK, I think I am now over my quesy stomach enough to type! DEAR GOD WOMAN. I honestly think you should be running the world - really if you can handle that many disasters and keep your head, running the world will be a cake walk!!
You are a stronger person than me. I would have found a way to light off the rest of the sweater. And still blame it on the oven, of course.
Hi! It is a remarkable sweater now, and will be even more remarkable once it has been magically reborn.
Hope you don't get too chilled in the meantime!
Steph...I can beleive you bured your sweater...it happens! I'm sad you didn't have a Rhinebeck sweater, now please, start knitting your sweaters in the round to avoid this very avoidable problem again! (The lengths, not the burning!) Sorry about the sweater, it is beautiful
This is probably way too easy, but would you consider making this beauty your Rhinebeck sweater for next year?
I'm sure your hordes of friends and admirers would be THRILLED to see the actual garment.
Hell, I'd PAY to see that gem!
Oh, you poor thing! All my sympathies!
I guess this is why the knitting gods addicted me to knitting fronts and back all at once on one circular needle back in the 1970s -- otherwise, I'd be even more nuts than I already am by now!
It will be gorgeous when it's done . . . by the time you reach Portland, I hope!
Oh my. Well, you did want some interesting hotel-knitting...
*ducks and runs before the sharp objects start flying*
Hope the rest of your trip goes smoothly!
My Dearest Harlotta,
I feel sad for your woes, and yet also they make me smile. My heroine does bright sh*t that will never, ever work when in a hurry! It makes me happy in that "she IS one of us" kinda way.
Wear it on Wednesday...then you can call it the Lady Baltimore sweater and we will see the actual you in it.
I KNEW there was a reason that I have always like a top down or bottom up sweater the best...the front and back are always the same length!
Graft it Baby. Snip an inch or two from the bottom at an easy place without too much pattern change. knit up to the right length and then graft it back together. This would take some thinking to get the cables to match up but it works really well on most too-short sweaters.
Major bummer about the sweater. It will be stunning when all of the pieces are the correct and matching sizes. By the way, I totally agree with you about WEBS. It is the happiest place on earth. I get such a sense of peace when I am there (even on a Tent Sale day). I don't know what they do there, but it is magical.
It was completely lovely to see you at Rhinebeck and you looked stunning in the sweater and shawl that you were wearing.
Now this kind of situation is the reason why I've become an expert in kitchener stitch! I've had to unhook arms from yoke sweaters to reposition them, I've had to separate hems from bodies, knit up the missing 3 inches (now why on earth would I think that I could get away with a 13" underarm measurement?) and kitchenered--in two colors, no less!--the new body piece to the old. I've dropped cuffs off sleeves, knit the missing inches, and kitchenered the cuff back on.
Oh, yes, I'd be screwed without kitchenering.
It's always good to acknowledge the things we are grateful for!
I'm so very glad I got to see you Saturday (I wore my Frangipani cable vest for the occasion). I was able to get a seat on one of WEB' 2 busses and had such a lovely drive up until we stopped for 45 minutes worth of traffic trying to get in the last few feet. Thought for sure I'd miss seeing you, but it worked out okay. I controlled myself and didn't ask about your new sweater, figuring that it just didn't get done or was soaking wet somewhere, but really, I'm just barely breathing again. I was admiring the loveliness of the sleeve spread out and then clicked down the screen and just couldn't breathe. Why oh why are not all sweater patterns written top down? That should be the standard method - in the round and top down. There must be someone official to complain to. Will be looking for pictures of it beaten into submission.
This simply endears you all the more to those of us who mave made every mistake possible, and continue to carry on anyway, because knitters obviously are people who do not give up easily. The hard won battles makes history, the most difficult child makes you the proudest, blah, blah, blah... celebrate that stubborn nature! Big empathetic hugs to you.
You are an inspiration.
I was thinking of knitting a sweater (I usually do socks and shawls and scarves and hats and mittens). Now I am not so sure . . .
I'm soooo ashamed of myself for laughing at your sweater pain.... snicker, snicker.... really... snicker, snicker.... stop it Barbara. Ok, sorry to hear... LOL! Heck that was funny!
Some days need greater strength than others.
(And I am sorry about my last comment about 'knowing your oven' - I didn't mean it to come back and bite you on the bum.)
Ack! I saw you around 4:30 as my BFF and I were running for the tour bus that got us there (we were late already or I'd have said "Hello" instead of "eep!") and I thought, "But where's the sweater?" Thank goodness I didn't ask! I'm so sorry for all you went through but if it's any consolation, your sweater looked much better than my CPH, which could've covered you, me, and every alpaca in sight. All at once. (Next time, I must MEASURE!) Like Vanessa, we didn't get there 'til after the signing (thanks to the monster traffic problems), but it was still a thrill, seeing you there in person! I couldn't have been more excited if Bruce Springsteen asked me for directions! Can we talk you into coming to Maryland Sheep & Wool next May? Only 199 days to go! I'm sure your Rhinebeck sweater will be beautiful, anywhere you are!
INteresting...you didn't mention considering reknitting the bottom (ribbing and those few inches), snipping and removing the ribbing (and the first few rows of scorch, on that one) and grafting the new bits onto the newly freed stitches.
Definitely my preferred kind of fix. NOt necessarily faster, but less frustrating to me!
And what a lovely sweater it will be.
It's stuff like this that gives me hope. I don't mean that in a bad way, really, but if it can happen to you I feel like slightly less of a doofus. One of these years the plan I hatch along about May to make myself a Rhinebeck sweater, or shawl, or something will actually come to fruition and I'll actually look like a knitter. Until then one of us will show up wearing some gorgeous if not necessarily newly finished piece of knitwear, and it won't be me.
Andrea in Victoria has a very good solution. About 15 years ago I did this with a gansey pullover I knit (too short I thought). And then, a few years later, it "relaxed" and now looks like a gansey dress. We've all been in the frog pond, Steph. Good to see again that you're one of us.
Posting this to let you know you are not alone: I decided to knit a Tulip baby sweater (inspired by you) and was feeling pretty good about my progress. But as I rounded the bottom left front, proudly knitting applied I-cord like a pro, I suddenly realized I had forgotten to do the six rows of seed stitch border on the left front (probably because I was watching TV and not reading the pattern) and I was applying I-cord directly to the stockinette sweater front. (sigh) I have a lot of pretty applied I-cord to pull out now, and maybe since I've read this post of yours I will have the guts to do it and start the border(s) over. You inspire, as always. Knit on in all circumstances ... Have a good book tour.
But allow me to quote yourself to you;
"If I don't finish, do you know what will happen?
But... I keep thinking how great it would be to have big deep side to side pockets on a sweater like that. I'd knit new fronts as the pocket fronts, with ribbing at their tops. Tear out the ribbing on your original pieces and knit down for the inside bit.
Probably not explaining well but now I want to make one lol.
Have fun in any case!
I'm with Barbara at 4:39. I couldn't stop laughing and the photo of your sweater just about sent me over the edge.
I know you will have a beautiful sweater by the time you hit Chicago er Skokie.
Sometimes - no, all the time - you amaze me. And the fact that you share your "arse ups" totally endears you.
Oh bloody hell, Steph, how awful!! You did better than me, I'd have cried, sworn copiously and probably kicked something too. But at least the whole thing didn't go on fire in the oven - that's a positive thing. And you like the yarn and pattern, so you'll not have too bad a time re-knitting. Best of all you'll have a beautiful sweater at the end of it all.......Rhinebeck notwithstanding xxx
Oh my, your poor sweater and poor you, too! I know it will be a beautiful sweater once it's done. Please post photos. I hope you had a good time at Rhinebeck regardless.
Here's to safe travels during your book tour.
Is it wrong that I am SO GLAD is was not the 101st person to ask about the sweater? I would not have wanted to push you over the edge. Saw you at Rhinebeck, noticed absense of said-sweater, and just quietly turned to my friends and said, "oh no, she must not have finished." If it's any consolation, I did show that what it was supposed to look like at the Green Mountain Spinnery booth.
Given the way your luck has run so far, drying the sweater on the air conditioner may freeze it solid and it will shatter into a million pieces when you pick it up.
KIDDING! I AM KIDDING!
Did you check the sleeves' length?
Holy F*%k! That's all I have to say about that.
Oh my Lord of the Rings. You had all that happen to you, and you "could still have a sweater in a couple of days." A cardigan. With cables. And set-in sleeves. Fronts done twice. If I had that all happen and it was done by the end of the year, I'd consider myself an Olympian.
When you are done I fully expect you to raise it up in the air with a swish of your magic needle and pronounce, "Do, or do not. There is no try."
Yes, I'm aware of how many movie references I can cram into one post....
Oh, Stephanie! I am so sorry that this happened to you, but your courage in sharing with us makes every one of us feel so much better about our own messes. I have one right now, and you've given me the inspiration to get right back in there tomorrow and fix it! Thanks, for what it's worth.
Wow. I totally would've bought you a drink and maybe handed over a hankie, because WOW. You're coping way better than I would have. Heavens.
Ouch! You have amazing patience. I would have been tempted to toss it out to the Yarn-Stealing Squirrel.
1) I would have cried and screamed and chewed my yarn to little bits before staggering on like you did! Well done!
2) I was just thinking about blocking in the oven and the likelihood I would burn something, so I think I'm going to nix that idea just to be safe.
3) I would totally be the little lamb in the food bin. Rock on little furry friend. Rock on.
Ohhhhhhhh....speechless, just when I didn't think it could get any worse, it did! But that sweater IS just beautiful and I know you will finish!
As a cheer-up - here is a knitting disaster story from my daughter - we meet at Panera's for knit night - here goes:
SO! You saw me working on that black hat later on at Panera's, no? I was at the point where the pattern called for me to put on all my fancy stitch markers on the top and start closing in. I was super excited, it was one more bloody thing almost off the needles. When it was time to go I stuffed the knitting in my purse securly, or so I thought!
Anyway, we went to our car after saying our goodbyes and piled in. Coming home I emptied out my purse trying to find that black hat, determined to finish it. It wasn't there! So I went out and crawled around in the car trying to find it there but alas, it wasn't there either that I could see. My mind immediately went to thinking that it must have fell out of my bag and was still at Panera's. I didn't want to leave earlier in the morning the next day just to see if they put my project in their lost and found so I shoved my jeans back on (I was in pj's at the time) and raced back to the restaurant to get there just before they closed.
People were looking at me a little weird when I was pulling out all of the chairs at the table we sat in and bent over on one side of the table to see under it then the other side of the table just in case I missed something. It wasn't there! One of the workers there apologized and said that they didn't find anything while there. So, I started to question my eyesight. Maybe it was in my purse still after all? And hid from me?
I went back to the car and that's when I found it.. Anchored by the ball of yarn inside the car that I didn't notice earlier, I had dragged that hat on the road from Panera's to home, then home to Panera's.
That little wooden leaf stitch marker is completely gone, it is also now impossible to tell that the sushi stitch markers were supposed to be little sushi pieces, my little skully stitch marker has his chin hacked to bits and the nice little beaded stitch markers that came in their own special box are now m.i.a. The hat itself is now a furry, grassy corpse and the needles had been shaved down to a dangerous point. I have decided upon seeing this hat project of mine that it is cursed. That it leapt out of the car to its death while dragging all my nice things along with it just to bring balance back into the world. It must have been jealous of the pink fuzzy baby hat that squeaked on those metal needles, or something.
The sad thing is, I have enough yarn still to make another hat, and I am seriously thinking of doing just that to spite the damn thing. I have also now taken to carrying the hat corpse, needles, stitches and all in my bag. I don't know why. I think I'm traumatized. I'll probably be taking it with me for another week before I can let it go.
A moment of silence please for all my nice stitch markers...
Your misadventures with the sweater made me laugh. In the grand scheme of things, it is only a sweater, you get to do more knitting to fix it, and how clever of you to figure out how to fix it. I would be puzzled and frustrated and would probably shove it to the back of my closet.
P.S. I think the inside of Mary Heather's sweater is amazing!
Stories such as this one are why I read your blog. To know that I am not alone.
Thank you for sharing your sweater mishap. I showed it to my 6 year old fledgling knitter who is frustrated because her knitting isn't perfect. (She doesn't quite buy my "you're knitting beautiful lace" explanation.) It was nice for her to see that even professional knitters make mistakes. And it's ok to cry about it, but once you're done you pick up the needles and try again. We'll leave out the beer for another 15 years, though.
Oh Steph, I feel your pain! Your admission of mistakes makes it possible for the rest of us to have (and accept) those imperfect knitting moments too!
Thank you for the affirmation that none of us is perfect. I have a half a sweater front that I have now ripped out 5 times because of gauge issues/mistakes. I don't feel so bad now.
Wow! ONe day, I'd love to make it to one of the fiber fests... probably VT, but who knows? And BTW, the U.S. server refusing the Cdn. quarter makes me laugh, HARD. Respectfully, we accept US change at face value since forever. Doesn't work in parking meters or coin-operated distribution machines, but hey, a nickel is still a nickel.
Holy sh*t. If that had happened to me I would have been hysterical and given all the pieces away to someone that wanted to finish them, never wanting to see them again. It will be so worth it when it's all finished, right?
Well it sounds like this is the "extra" knitting that you are doing in your hotel room in the evening.
Well, now you won't run out of knitting on your book tour, this makes you even more human and loveable, and knitters understand and will support you. Just have another drink and enjoy the next few weeks.
It's so nice to know we are not alone in the black hole of knitting that sucks the sanity out of some of our projects. I too feel the same way about WEBS but the last time I was in the area I was a bit short (knowing how much I would probably spend there) so went to the next town to buy cheese making supplies. Next time it will be WEBS.
Has anyone pointed out the irony of burning a yarn named "Embers"?
Well, I look at it this way, you will still have a stunning sweater when all is said and done AND by being so honest with us, your readers and fellow knitters, you make us feel better about our own mistakes.
When Noah was in surgery that awful day ( he continues to heal and move towards full recovery now, at 13) a year and a half ago, I knit a lot and I knit next to him in recovery and on the neurosurgical unit and I was convinced I'd have a sweater for him and it would be awesome and he'd be so pleased and also warm and better and, well, I messed it up. A guernsey I have knit twice before. I wanted to weep I felt I had totally let him down, except I suddenly realized that I could rip it out and start over and it would still be great, but also that the process had kept me sane and by his side with a smile on my face every step of the way.
Thanks for making me smile most days and for reminding me that this is something most of do for fun or to relax and it's not supposed to be making us crazy ( well not too often).
whoa! that sucks and I totally understand...I have one vest upstairs that is STILL in a timeout because it is knit in the round and needs to be steeked, but when I started to try to put the shoulder seams together (it was all knit but the edging), I discovered that I had shorted the back by about 20 stitches - yikes! it will never work, and it is just sitting there thinking about how useless it is until it gets frogged, but I can't bring myself to do it yet...sigh! @#$%^&*
I said OMG out loud when I saw that picture of the front/back. I did meet someone at Rhinebeck who scorched an entire Kauni Cardigan beyond repair in a oven, so your problem is at least fixable. I did not ask where your Rhinebeck sweater was BTW. It was so nice seeing you!
I'm so sorry. I understand part of your pain (not the burned part - yikes!), because I have tried to knit the same newborn hat 6 times this weekend. I was making good progress the first time through, until my friend asked me if I thought it was big enough (no, I didn't do a gauge swatch; why do you ask?), and I said 'Of course it is,' knit for a few more minutes, ripped it out and started over. Then the trouble began - screwed up the join in the round, screwed up the pattern (very simple swirl hat pattern), screwed up the tinking to try to fix the pattern. Repeat ad nauseam. I think I have a handle on it again, though...
Have a beer and a deep breath, and finish that beautiful sweater.
Boy! So sorry! It is both encouraging & disheartening to hear that these things happen to a knitter such as you with many more years of knitting than I. Nice to hear that I'm not the only one who can fudge up a pattern, but sad to know that isn't always cured with experience (it's just our humaness). Best of luck going forward & can't wait to see you in Dallas next week!
Well the sweater part of the story just sucks. Entertaining though.
Rhinebeck looked as awesome as always!
I am so sorry about the sweater. I didn't get to Rhinebeck until Sunday, so I completely missed seeing you, but I did come home with your book, the very first purchase that I made. We won't even discuss the rest...
I've been discovering how knitting a gansey can be a very good thing because the entire sweater is sequential and stays on the circular needles (except for the welts, but that's OK). Were it not for this organization, I would be frogging all the time and would never finish an actual sweater. I just know.
Your patience is commendable. I totally would have trashed it in disgust and burned the pattern so that I would never try it again.
But that's why you're the Yarn Harlot and I'm an ordinary knitter.
what about making it saddle-style and adding a four inch section of ribbing sideways at the top on each side as a design feature? It'll match on both sides, so we all would know you "meant to do that".. :)
There is hope for the rest of us
The good part of this oven-fried and too-short-in-the-front-sweater story is that you knew what to do to fix the problem(s). Had that been me, the whole thing would have probably gone into a bag in the back of the closet, never to be seen or spoken of again. So for knowing what to do, you are a hero. And just a comment to Gwen of the Panera hat disaster, I have not laughed so hard in weeks as I did reading your story. Thank you, I laughed and cried and almost disgraced myself. Have you considered writing a book?
This so reminds me of a post that we have in our office..." A lack of planning on your part...Does it constitute an emergency on our part ????? "
A YARN emergency !!
We all know that any emergency involving yarn is IMPORTANT !!!
No wonder you had that look on your face when I asked if you had finished it in time. :( I came home from Rhinebeck today and wasnt able to make it to Brooklyn,,, sigh,,, I still owe you a hat from my bus depot. One of these days,,,,,,,,
I feel 1000% better about my knitting skillz knowing that someone who, in my mind, knits flawlessly everytime. I did the same thing to my Central Park Hoodie, on Christmas Eve, except with scissors and I tried to felt the little cut bits back together with an electric toothbrush and wine AND THAT ACTUALLY WORKED until I put the pieces together and found the front was, yes, 4" short.
I stopped knitting things that are supposed to fit after that.
2 words of advice--TWO SWEATERS---one a little bigger and one a little smaller. Enough said.
You BAKE sweaters?! Holy cow - I'm so bad a knitter that I would never, ever chance that. 4 inches off? Oh, sure, all in a day's work for me but to tempt the Gods with heat (in a gas oven, no less) would just be begging them to wreak havoc.
Silly me thought that, after knitting 3 pairs of plain socks, toe up, I was ready to tackle the lovely green Almondine socks in Sock Knitting Master Class. One inch into the first sock's lacy pattern and I can't figure out what happened to a stitch ALREADY, and have no idea how to rip out a pattern. I happened to pick up Canadian Living today and saw the greatest tip - weave a "lifeline" into a row so you can make a mistake without annihilating everything. This is my kind of tip.
I know you'll come out of this with a beautiful sweater (heck, you've already knit one side again?!?) but I echo those who feel that there is hope for us if even you err from time to time.
Have a great tour!
As I read this I laughed, I cried and I drank a glass of red wine in your honor. This too shall pass...
I am NOT laughing, I am not, honest. That would be just mean and tacky and unkind to a suffering knitter. But honestly, Stephanie, this is too funny, and such a bummer, and I had a glass of wine half snorted through my nose while reading. I am glad that the pressure of Rhinebeck is off, and you can just knit. I may have to re-read this. Have fun, really, in spite of it. :)
>_< Ouch!! I think I would have dissolved into hysterical laughter after all that as well. I well might soon if I can't finish my 7 month old's Halloween costume in two weeks. First time mom + 7 month old who doesn't nap well + possibly insane desire to knit his first Halloween costume = ?? Good luck on getting your sweater finished. I'll be rooting for you, because if you can get it done, dag nabbit so can I. (I hope)
Wondering if you ever think maybe you put too much pressure on yourself, just saying. We love you already is all. New sweater in record time not a condition. Breathe enjoy the roadtrip, no pressure, woman. <3
Oh, Steph, if a knitting genius like you could make a boo boo like this, then I don't feel so stupid after all! Thank you for admitting it. You're my hero!
I was a little concerned that you were only taking one knitting project on a two week knitting tour. Clearly this is no longer a problem.
I once knit the entire back of the Vogue birthday sweater on a different size needle than the front of the sweater. Think cotton intarsia in 16 colors. It was ugly.
My sympathies are with you.
Aw!! I was reading the blog & smiling & laughing & wishing I was there, and then -- poor you! That damn sweater!! **hugs** It's great that you're on it again, it's going to feel SOOOO good to have it finished <3
Take it easy, be good to yourself. We'll look forward to seeing its debut at Knot Hysteria. It's a smaller audience, yes, but choice.
Are you a middle child? Only my middle kid would be as determined as you to get it done No Matter What.
Well, anyone can have a knitting mishap. The important thing is, WHAT DID YOU GET AT WEBS?
I actually felt a bit nauseous after reading the fiasco of the Rhinebeck sweater......You took it a LOT better than I would have. The singe would have put me over the edge, but you kept going. Then to have it 4 inches off?!?! OMG I would have put it in time out sooo fast! and yet you are already workong on it to fix it.
Tenacity. You has it.
Okay, so doing colorwork this weekend, I remembered your post about making colorwork look better. Pulled it up and took your advice about blocking while still in progress. That helped tremendously. Then I was in a bit of a funk about not being able to work on my hat (not like I don't have anything else tho work on). I considered your oven drying trick. After reading this, I'm glad I just sat it in front of a fan and waited until today!
You are totally the speediest blogger on the web :) :) :)
So maybe you mis-heard the name of the sweater. It's a "Rugby" sweater, not a "Rhinebeck" sweater.
Because although both front pieces are short, they are the same as each other.
And rugby shirts are made that way - with the front shorter than the back.
Thanks for the photos and details of your day. The sweater mishap was double trouble but in the end you will have a lovely sweater!
So I don't know if you have a car, or sunshine, but that's how I dry my sweaters, and so far, none has burst into flames. Free solar energy.
A little trouble?? wow - you are a better gal than I in dealing with it as well as it seems you did - yikes!
I love you. Your honesty is such a gift! Is it bad that I referred to a knitting error at knitting group as a Yarn Harlot moment of epic proportions? That, and booby-brain (I have an 8 week old at home, he's 15lbs, we bf a LOT :D).
I"m sorry about your bit of trouble with the sweater. Perhaps it's some small consolation that, as you could see at Rhinebeck, even those of us with sweaters had to hide them under jackets to stay warm.
And we must have just missed you, because we also saw the goat that wouldn't move (a lovely, well-groomed, black cashmere). I was impressed at how it wasn't the least scared of all the people -- and how when its handler said, "Don't you want to go back in the barn and see your brother?", it looked around as if to say, "No, I want to see everything that's going on outside."
I think you need to make a special tab containing moments like this that we can give to frustrated beginner knitters.
I met you briefly as you were leaving the signing - it was great (for me)...
I'm really glad that I was did NOT ask you where the new sweater was - no point in rubbing salt in the wound.
Argh! So sorry you had a little trouble. And I'm so glad that you knit so much faster than me. And I wish I'd been at WEBS that day--I live close enough that it could have happened... It can only get better, right?
Methinks the universe is trying to tell you something...maybe s l o w d o w n...
Ouch! My condolences. But you are WAY ahead on next year's Rhinebeck sweater - just a few inches and a front away in fact. So that's something.
When I was a kid, our family had laundry "issues". My little sister once had to wear blackened, scorched Hello Kitty underpants to school because they were dried in the oven (our mom didn't know to turn it off). So you know, at least your underpants weren't cooked blackened style. (Little sis was only 6 but learned to get me - 2 yrs older- to do her laundry for her lickety split.)
But the sweater you _were_ wearing on Saturday was so pretty! I pointed your sweater out to a friend, and then added, "Oh and by the way, that's the Yarn Harlot. She knows color."
How about this: just knit another sweater like you did here, but in reverse, and then sew them both up and give one to a shorter-torso'd friend. No one would ever know! (Except a few thousand of your closest friends, natch.)
Also, please don't talk about putting flammable goods in the oven and them catching fire without forewarning your OCD readers. :) J/k....sorta!
Ugh. Just ugh. At least it didn't catch fire and flame up the entire house?
In other news, that sheep in the bin is about the cutest darn thing ever.
I too am amazed that you were able to start knitting again. I would have had total meltdown and been immobilized. I guess it's one of those "get back on the bicycle" times. I look forward to seeing the finished product.
Oh my lord - you are a truly resilient woman. I'm not sure that even sweetest babies and wooly critters could have helped me through such sweater trauma! Bless you for sharing it with us.
There is something particularly comforting to know that even the Yarn harlot has these extreme screw ups, it is not just me. Proceed on!...
I am sad for you about the sweater but I have tosay sister it made me laugh out loud and for that I am forever grateful. As for Debbie rescuing you really just seeing her always makes my day better and I think the woman is truly thrilled at giving your engine a jolt. Thanks for writing and sharing your adventures with us.
Thank you. This has been a very long day including dissertation research disasters and fellowship application hazards. Your sweater put it all in perspective. Additionally, the fact that having sweater difficulties to this extent totally outweighs writing a dissertation in the humanities, speaks volumes to the extent that burning a sweater AND having it come out four inches short is truly, completely awful. We all feel your pain.
You might find one of those babies to have a good cuddle with and reconnect with what is really good and right with the world. Then re-live your memories of your trip to WEBS and Rhinebeck, have another glass of wine and know that we've all experienced a knitting problem or two or a zillion. It's just knitting, and you're in charge of it. Carry on!
I don't feel quiet so alone now!
You could also try making it look like saddle style by knitting an extension on the top of each sleeve from the center of the sleeve towards the front, four inches wide and long enough to reach the neck.
I thought stuff like this only happened to me!!! Thank you for sharing!!!!
How do you do it? Dead battery, burnt-belly-sweater, book signings, travel, and then you go to hotel and have already re-knit one of the front sides!
The rest of us mere mortals would have cried on the lovely Claudia’s shoulder, and told our woe to the lambs, goats, and anyone who would hold still long enough, including the proud mamas of those precious babies. This would lead to frogging the sweater in a blind fury and raiding the mini-bar in the hotel room.
You’ve either evolved to a higher state of consciousness…..or you’re already semi-crazed from the book tour.
Speaking of which, loved the book! Hope to see you in Baltimore. Bring an umbrella.
Sigh. At least it makes a fantastic story!
Dear heavens. I seriously gasped out loud when it got to the part about the fronts being wrong. The students I am supervising in a silent study hall all glared at me. Bless you and your ability to share this disaster with the world. I would be still in a ball crying on the floor.
I forgot that I had pre-ordered your book! :D
I was very confused when I just got a ding saying Amazon had charged my account.
It's like Christmas, but early! w00t!!!!!!
I always appreciate your honesty and humor!
darn sweater. a curse or to do list. take your pick.
Okay... you don't have a sweater yet, but on the positive side, what you DO have is beautiful. Really, and I'm so glad that you're putting your big girl panties on and fixing it right away, instead of giving it a really good time out. Good on you.
Oh, no!! I'm feeling slightly nauseous in sympathy. I admire your persistence, and absolute refusal to be defeated. Given that I regularly consign projects to the naughty corner for a one stitch mistake 2 rows back, I can learn a lot from you :-) I really hope that once it's been properly tamed, it becomes one of your favourite sweaters for a long time!
Daughter just said, "Have you read the Yarn Harlot's latest blog entry? It will make you feel better about knitting." Thank you for being perfectly imperfect.
That is a sad, sad sweater story.
Wow. I can't believe (well, I can) the fortitude it takes to do the re-dos after the discoveries. You are my hero.
Wow....that would have had me laughing/crying as well- and good for you -I don't know if I could pick it right back up again like you. Between what happened to you and Carin from Round the Twist (talk about a punch in the gut) if I ever get my hand knit sweater near an oven somebody stop me!!!
Well, I just love the lamb in the Rubbermaid bin. You are a better, more patient person than I. I would have chucked the whole thing into the fireplace, needles included, and wiped it from my memory. So what if you now run out of yarn? Do you have a plan C? I'm just curious to see how people manage to have worked out alternatives, I never seem to.
I am SO sorry! I don't usually laugh at someone else's "Oh S***" day, but you had me laughing so hard at this one that I can't even feel guilty about laughing at the misfortune. That said, I will now find it in my heart to go tackle row 40 of my shawl that I have already frogged three times and keep repeating "If Stephanie can handle the Rhinebeck sweater, I can do this." Thanks again for being you.
That was a post that defines resilince.
That was a post that defines resiliance.
I would totally have driven clean up to Canada from Rhinebeck to buy you a bottle of Screech if I'd been there, and would have explained to the customs officer on the way back that a Canadian was trapped in the US with a serious sweater emergency and that I could not be delayed in any way.
Of course knitters have jumper cables. Think about it. Have you ever known a knitter who didn't have jumper cables? It's the one roadside emergency tool a knitter CAN'T forget. It even sounds like a knitterly thing.
Before you tackle those sweater fronts, though? Go to the hotel bar. Order a shot of 18-year-old Laphroaig, neat.
You may need two.
THEN rip the fronts with great satisfaction. Resume knitting after the Scotch wears off.
(Knitterly P.S.: I cut a contrasting-colored piece of cotton crochet thread, make a small loop in one end, and place it on the needle at some location where it can do double duty as a stitch marker, then I measure the length(s) needed for each measuring point, and tie #6 bead at the lengths I need for the armhole and neck/shoulder, and another bead at the end to indicate total length. I use cotton so the will hang straight. So if the pattern says, "knit until piece is 18" long, begin armhole, knit 8 inches, begin shoulder shaping, and begin neckline shaping 6 inches after the armhole begins, I will have a bead at each point and one at the very bottom. Hope that makes sense, it's so simple with a picture. It really helps.
Oh! I would just make longer ribbing on the bottom. It's very flattering too. Do the back to match and it would look fine I think.
Sounds like the start of the next book . . .
Omg! I I wish you well with the sweater surgery! I think every knitter has done this and someone like me does it frequently! Thanks for reminding us that we are all still human!
well at least I don't feel alone. I knit a sweater the year before last that grew and grew and grew. frogged it. waited a year. knit a different sweater in the same (very very stretchy) yarn in a nice cable pattern to keep the stretch at bay. put it away for the summer. Finished it last week.
It is too small. It is going to be mailed to my friends's daughter, who helpfully tugged and pulled at the now will-not-stretch-at-all yarn to try to get the sleeves to fit. It looks very nice on her. She is a lot smaller than me. I don't have the gumption to re-knit the sweater another time. Better luck to you!
It just goes to show that however long you've been knitting you can still find new and interesting ways to screw up.
You dried it in the oven???? I have never heard of that before - and would be much to scared!!!!!!!
That's why I always (if possible) alter patterns to knit sweater bodies in one piece... I am horrible at seaming, and stuff never quite matches up otherwise. It's one reason I love the Lowry Pullover I'm working on. No seams except the shoulders/sleeves. As for the burning... I've had a corgi eat the sole out of an alpaca sock I finished less than 24 hours prior. Not the same, but I feel your pain.
and then you locked yourself out of your hotel room....naked...See, it COULD be worse!
That was a little trouble! I was bummed not to see you in person but visited your books and bought one on Sunday. Keeping my fingers crossed that you have enough yarn.
Wow, if it had been me, I would have thrown it in a closet for a LONG time out and they would have found me curled up in a corner crying and rocking. It wouldn't have been pretty.
You make me proud to be a knitter. "I had a little trouble." You go girl.
Only a woman with impossibly high standards would be disappointed that she *only* brought a completed, published book to Rhinebeck and not a book and a completely amazing brand-new perfect sweater, having recently finished a big pile of baby things for her friend. You inspire me. Please be a little easier on yourself. :)
Asymmetrical is in this year!
sweater? what sweater? All I saw was a Tunis sheep and a baby lamb.
I love the Tunis. Their faces all red and their wool all white but looking a tiny bit pink. Love them.
"If you are angry it calms you down" - a Year 6 boy talking about knitting, quoted in today's Guardian, page 37
Your sweater is trying to tell you to go back to WEBS for more yarn.
that's what i love about you - you're human like the rest of us! :)
Just remember your own words from the first part of this post, "I have the good fortune..." and let the rest go. The Rhinebeck sweater will get done eventually and then you'll tell it as a funny story and forget all the angst. I think you're the best!
Beer helps me too - good craft beer - although sometimes I have to tink later.
I like Dez Crawford's suggestion about beads on a sort of plumb line of crochet thread to measure the inches. I also write on the pattern how many rows I knit before starting the armhole on the back so I can do the same number on the front(s). I'm not a very confident knitter so I need a lot of written annotations.
Love your blog. Love your books. Are you ever going to come to Colorado?
I admire your tenacity with the sweater...but since you have blog readers you are accountable for the rest of your earthly life as to what happens to the sweater. I mean wherever you go you will be asked" "What happened to your Rhinebeck sweater? Were you able to fix it?" It's nice to know even expert knitters can botch a project.
How appropriate that the colorway is "Ember"!
Thanks, as others have said, for sharing this bit of Life with us! As one who is apt to rip out rather than soldier on, I now have your example to follow.
You did a *really* good job not crying in the restaurant. (The beer might have helped. And the mushrooms.)
In the end, it will be the most perfect sweater ever created and (fingers crossed) a sign that you got all the crazy trouble out of the way before the book tour began. Smooth sailing!
lol i can see my head in line in the third photos. it's just a peachy colored blurry spot but that's me.
I'm with Delia (200+ comments later)... You're still my hero
OH NO!! Oh no.
At least you have the ability to fix it. I've only been knitting for a couple years and something like that would probably lead to a massive tantrum followed by balling the thing up in a plastic bag and burying it the closet. *shudder*
That cracks me up and makes me admire you all the more ;-). Well done for keeping it together. I've had my own run ins with a cardigan this week - a cardigan now known as the cardigan of doom. Perhaps it's catching?
That cracks me up and makes me admire you all the more ;-). Well done for keeping it together. I've had my own run ins with a cardigan this week - a cardigan now known as the cardigan of doom. Perhaps it is catching?
oh jeez that is a hilarious misfortune! thank the goddess you are such a fast knitter and can redo a front (or 2) in a matter of hours (days). i'm sorry you had to live through it, but please know some of us will use this cautionary tale when we knit our Gwendolyns (and other cardigans). thanks for sharing!!
Now, that's funny; I don't care who you are.
I am sending a link to this post to my husband. He thinks I really am a sucky knitter because I am always doing things twice or even three times. But you are the Yarn Harlot and you make mistakes !
Oh. My. Goodness. My condolences! But I loved how you could put it into words with such humor and grace, even if it wasn't what you were feeling at the time. Best wishes in the redo!
wow, I'm showing this post to my (already on it's second incarnation)sweater in progress and telling it that I won't be so forgiving, understanding or willing to reknit it if it doesn't behave... do you think it will believe me?
You have made the best decision about the sweater. Three months from now, it will have become a good story and no longer a giant frustration. I know.
Thanks for sharing your sweater story....it's nice to know I'm not the only one. If the Yarn Harlot can do that, it's ok. :D Can't wait to see the (truly) finished product!
Bless your heart! I think if it had been me I would have tossed the whole thing into a dark corner and forgot about it for a year or two!
Good Luck you are more persistent than I!
What a major disaster! But, like the pro you are, you don't just roll it into a ball and hide it in a closet (been there, done that). You will reknit and finish it and it will be a glorious sweater after all! Kudos to you!!
I almost never comment, but I actually got kind of nauseous reading this post, and was alone in my living room muttering, "Oh no, oh no, oh no!" under my breath. So, so sorry. I'd have been tempted to set the whole thing afire, so congratulations on your restraint, and my condolences on the whole thing.
I'm so so sorry. Reading about the sweater, I gasped aloud, so that my kids worried that someone had come to harm. I bet the sweater, once completed, will be really really special to you after this experience.
Rav baby Carson is my new little grandson (well, to be technical, step-grandson, as Sarah is my step-daughter - but I don't get technical like that with babies!! Especially since my own kids refuse to procreate yet.) Thanks for sharing his photo. He is a doll and I got to hold and cuddle him the weekend before Rhinebeck. Oh yeah, Stephanie, LOVE your blog!! (just thought I would throw that in there, and hopefully I'll actually get to meet you sometime!)
Laura in Arkansas
"assuming I don't run out of yarn." has the ring of doom to it. Just sayin'.
It's The Curse of the Rhinebeck Sweater. Not your fault -- if it had been finished, something else would have happened. Think back. If you're in Boston, ask about The Curse of the Bambino. These things stick. Knit on.
When I do stuff like this I'm always glad I'm not a brain surgeon. Once done, your sweater will be gorgeous!
I'm sorry. It looks like it will be a beautiful sweater when you are finished and will be well worth the trouble. Happy travels.
Yikes, that explains the look on your face when I asked about your sweater~ um, you have an expressive face, has anyone told you that?
Bless your heart---it is good to know that knitters of all experience levels create challenges for themselves. Did you buy anything at WEBS or the festival?
Oh man... Tenacious, that's what you are. The vast majority of knitters would stuff that sucker in the back of the closet and put their fingers in their ears to block out the dismayed sobs of the wool. "Is it something I said?"
Each of us have their own definition of an ideal beauty and being beautiful but there will always be conflict as to how people would see it from their point of view.
Not to minimize your pain, but this post made me feel so good (just ripped back a sleeve).
I still don't know how you do it, even without counting ovens and mis-measuring and such. I am far to slow to start a sweater even 6 months before Rhinebeck. And I am sorry I missed you - I got to Rhinebeck late in the afternoon on Sunday. Though I will confess I still checked out the book signing area, just on the off chance you were there (even though I knew you weren't). Hope springs eternal.
Oh no! I'm sorry about the oven-scorch and the fronts not being long enough. However, there is one solution that apparently no one suggested: starting a new sweater style in which the back is longer than the front! ;)
If it makes you feel any better: if I was knitting a sweater with your kind of deadline and packing for two weeks I would have ended up with three sleeves, one front and one back - and my front would not have matched my back either.
Ohhhh, *hugs*! It will be a fabulous sweater, and even more lovely and meaningful after this mishap!
Holy cow. The positive part of me says that it's nice that you occasionally do things that give you stories to tell to others. The rest of me says, "Shut up, positive part."
Take notes for starting your next book and call it research.
Beautiful cables- it'll look wonderful in the end. We all feel your pain.
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!!!!!!!!! I AM SENDING GOOD KARMA TO YOU
YOU get into these situations because "you can handle it." Sadly, for the Rhinebeck sweater you hoped to wear sooner rather than later, this event is going to be a great hoot to add to your next book. All is not lost!
This is a sad, sad story. It is, however, a way more interesting tale than if you'd have just finished the sweater on time. And it makes the rest of us feel so much better about our own knitting foibles! I'm sure it's going to be gorgeous when you do the repair work :)
wow... you burned your sweater in the oven... all I can say is wow... now my knitting boo boo's don't seem so crazy anymore. like the time I somehow thought my lambswool sweater could be machine washed... or the time I thought knitting reverse stockinette rows around my boobs was a good idea...
I am so sorry. I was reading your blog and gasped out loud. I could feel your pain. I know, it is (just) a sweater but it is also a lot of time, effort and creativity. I don't know what I would do. Ripping it to shreds comes to mind but it isn't the sweater's fault. So, I think you are correct in picking yourself up by the bootstraps (whatever they are) and redoing the sweater fronts. After all, it is such a pretty sweater. Good luck or break a leg or needles to the grindstone - whichever is most fitting.
....(snif, snif)..Oh Steph! No wonder you were not smiling when I saw you! I was right behind Claudia and my knitter sense told me you were not happy inside. I know when knitters have had a fight with a project and I could see it.
When you did not have the sweater on your person I just knew something went wrong with it. My knitter's heart hurts cause I know how that feels and that is why I don't do sweater...or have not had the courage to do one.
I may someday, but, with all that has happened to me, I just can't take that chance. I want to stay as happy as circumstances in my life right now will allow.
As it is, when I saw you after Claudia, my husband gave me the money to come and see you because he knew I really wanted to see you. I needed a happy moment and he gave it to me He did have to throw me out of the house though, cause I was afraid of spending any money but, he knew I needed to go to Rhinebeck, see you, play with sheep wool and see other knitters and all that yarn!
Thanks for signing my books and....don't cry too much inside. Knitting is like life, as you always remind us. This too shall pass...
I admire your determination! If such a thing had happened to me, the item in question would hibernate for several years. While I got over it.
Sorry I didn't see you in Rhinebeck, and that I'm too tired (from Rhinebeck) to make it to Brookline tonight. Next time! Meanwhile, I was wondering, will you be doing this book on audio? I love the audios of the others, and while I haven't let myself dip into the new book yet, I'm sure I'm going to want it! Or should I be asking the publisher instead?
Looking forward to seeing whatever outfit you pull together in Chicago this week!
Had I checked the tour details, I would have tried to get to Park Slope to see Stephanie again. (I live a long bus ride away in Queens, but it's doable if I plan for it.)
Anyway, it was good to see and talk a bit with her on Saturday in Rhinebeck. She noticed the necklace I was wearing (which I had put made) and she said she liked it. It was great ego-boo.
Seeing the burnt part, I was all "that's not so bad. She can recover from that." Then, when the front and back were different, I gasped audibly. Damn. I'm so sorry. I guess it's a good thing you like knitting, yes?
Thank you for posting this. I'm making a sweater right now and although nothing (knock on major wood) has gone wrong, I have had to do some maths as I am using different weight yarn than called for. Your humor and keeping at it is giving me confidence to keep going too. Thank you!!
OMG....been away from the computer for a couple of days and holy canolli, you had a knitting incident. The sweater is beautiful regardless of size. I give you huge amounts of credit for knitting while doing a Wool Festival and book tour.
I had to laugh at your tale. I realized what an idiot I am this evening when I looked at the tapered sleeve I was knitting and saw that there were no increases in it. I was almost to the elbow and congratulating myself on my progress. I also had to reknit one of the fronts (it's a cardigan) because it was about an inch wider than the other side. And my sweater is just plain stockinette--I should have breezed through it. Your sweater will be beautiful when it's done.
I just read the saga of the Rhinebeck sweater and said a couple of extra s***s for you (it likely calls for even saltier language). I plan to travel from Moscow, Idaho to Portland so that I can hear/see you at Powell's at the end of next week. I feel like I should bring you a nice Oregon microbrew or Pinot Noir (both of which Oregon does very well!) and just sit and chat about "recovery" from knitting mishaps....um, challenges, make that challenges! Thanks for being willing to share the highs and lows (and the solutions) so that we mere mortals can learn to come back from adversity just like the pros! Louise
I can think of a zillion cliched statements about the cosmic forces at work here. However, I don't think I need to. I love the cables, the yarn and the colour. I know you'll fix this up in no time at all, and will wear it proudly. What an awesome story to re-tell forever more.
I enjoyed seeing you at both Rhinebeck and WEBS (the red car next to the pickup truck is mine!), but the story of the Rhinebeck sweater breaks my heart. If it had been me I would have banished the sweater for having the nerve to burn and then be too short in the front.
*gasp* I am so sorry about your sweater, and a beautiful sweater it was too. I'm glad you have a plan and trust you will keep calm and knit on. Tonight I completely frogged a fingerless mitt that had two glaring errors, a story which I offer up as some consolation although I know it is Not. Even. Close.
I am so sorry about your sweater!
I had the same thing happen the first (and last!) time I dried one in the oven -regardless of keeping an eye on it and the low temperature. And I lost a big piece of the back of the sweater I had knit in one piece... sigh. But I just had to get it dry so I could wear it to work right away! More than a year later, it's still tucked away in the closet because I ran out of yarn. :(
I am so so sorry. I would have done the same. In fact this week I made a scorch mark on a towel that I was in a hurry to block. I decide on steam blocking despite the fact that the only iron I have was left at my house by a roommate and I had never used it before. It was/is a CRAPPY IRON. Somehow even though I know never to put the iron on your knitting or at least put a towel over the knitting if you do so, the iron became magnetically attracted to the towel and make a mark. On Cotton.
May be you had a defective oven. You could make a felted bag from the sweater.
Hope to see you in AUSTIN! latifa
I saw what you did to your sweater, and I gasped. I saw what Carin did to hers, and I yelped. I will never look at my oven the same way again.
oh my...a Problem Solver Extraordinaire, you are.
Thanks for the new word!!!! immolated! weeee
Steph, I don't think the problem is that you didn't plan ahead. What I think is that you are totally an overachiever. When you told us all of your four day sweater plan...I cringed. I was hoping it would work out for you...but I feel bad that the damn sweater is making you crazy. I hope you have enough yarn, and I hope you are staying warm.
What can I say but, "OH NOES!"
I was laughing and crying and laughing/crying along with you. I may have actually put my head on the desk too. It's so awful you can't help but laugh! Good luck with the re-knitting!
ARGH! You were in Northampton while I was in Northampton, and I didn't know! If I had known, I would have found you and thrown myself at your feet, exclaming "I'm not worthy! I'm not worthy!"
I'm not sure why, it just seems like the thing I would do.
If you DO run out of yarn, Knit-Purl in Portland carries Shelter. Let me know and I'll go get you some and bring it to Powells!
OMG, my blogging partner is right - you can see my shock of platinum hair in the picture of Claudia. I'm Yarn-Harlot adjacent! Woohoo!!!!
Rhinebeck was great! I brought home tons of fiber and yarn. I also brought a non-spinner/knitter friend with me, and I think she will soon be a spinner/knitter. Your books are always fun to read, and I am really enjoying the new one! Have a wonderful trip!!
I am wondering if I am the only one having trouble with this site? For me the October posts do not show up on the main page. I end up having to go to the September archive and click ahead to find October. This has never happened before. I am wondering if my internet is acting up or if anyone else is having the same issue.
OH! That is so SAD.
But I am so glad that you can fix it and be GLAD!
Brenda, Check your Browser settings be sure you are reading from the source every time not automatically, delete your temp internet files (usually an option under tools) and re-boot.
But, but, your cables aren't mirror images! I don't know if I can stand it! ;-)
Honestly, I hate to say it, but it sort of makes me happy. Not that I'm happy about your sweater's misfortunes, of course! But knowing that someone as skilled at knitting as you clearly are can still make such mistakes AND have a wonderful sense of humor about it is so encouraging when I have sweater on the needles that I just had to rip back about 6 inches because I somehow messed up the armhole increases and had armholes pretty much down to my waist...
I'm SO sorry for your bit of "trouble," but I know you'll have a beautiful sweater to wear very soon!
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