August 13, 2012

Take the Hint

This weekend was indeed full of knitting - or as full of knitting as you can make it while still meeting minimum standards of cleanliness and providing a reasonable amount of food for the masses - emphasis being on the minimum.  I decided that before I turned myself loose onto the stuff I really want to be knitting I'd finish up what was on the needles - sort of.  I didn't go deep into the UFO (UnFinished Object) pile, just took a stab at clearing up the few things that were haunting the knitting basket. 

The trouble is that I think I hate it all, and I think it's starting to hate me back.  If I were a less experienced knitter I would be inclined to think that everything I am knitting is a stinking slag-heap of fibre, but I am an experienced knitter, and I know about the crap that knitting likes to run on you, and I'm well aware of what's going on here. It isn't that all the knitting I'm doing now is bad, it's that thinking it is - that's an early symptom of Startitis.  I'm not falling for it. I'm finishing this stuff and that's a promise - or at least, that's what I said.

Apparently my knitting didn't like that sense of determination, and so it's teamed up with the universe to make it hard.  Take the new Flow. I read the comments carefully, cracking up at what you guys had to say. Often, there's an overwhelming sense of the right thing to do in the comments.  I'll say "Hey dudes, I have this knitting problem" and 95% of you will agree.  Not so much this time. There was about a 50/50 split in there - with the lot of you completely divided on which direction cotton yarn is going to screw me in. Half of you agreed with Taraincolorado:

It is cotton. It will grow as you wear it. Don't let it fool you into adding extra length.

and the other half went with JudiP53, who was sure about this:

Cotton is going to shrink lengthwise and grow widthwise. It may measure the same as the Seduce version now, but it won't after a couple of soaks.


This, by the way, only confirmed my belief that cotton is a beast to work with, and tells all sorts of lies to all kinds of knitters. I was starting to think it was just a matter of experience (and I am inexperienced with cotton) and then look at that.  A whole bunch of people who knit cotton all the time, and there's still no agreement at all on how it behaves.  (I bet that if we investigated further, we'd find out some interesting things about how those two camps treat cotton in the gauge department, but there's no way to know how I compare to them, so I suppose it's not helpful right this minute.)  I decided to trust my instincts, based solely on the fact that every time I've ever been really shafted by a knitted thing, I've felt it was coming and ignored the hint.  I ripped back both pieces, added another inch to them, blocked them, and sewed them up - happily thinking that now all they need is the neck and arm bands knitted on, and that's only a little work, and then this project will be done. 

Thing is, as I was sewing, I noticed something strange.  (Well, first I noticed that I hadn't made them the same length and had to rip back one of the pieces again and fix that, but I'm not going to go on about that.) I noticed a little spot on the knitting that looked bleached.  

Then I noticed another, and another.  Some on the right side of the work and some on the back, but there they were.  These pictures don't really show how obvious the spots are. They glow with a neon orange that can't be accurately captured.  

I don't use bleach anywhere in the house, so I'm not sure how it happened... but it was unmistakable.  Joe wondered if it wasn't one of Sam's cosmetics, and I did wash it in the bathroom sink, so perhaps, but it is obvious, and there's no way I can wear it like that.  I duplicate stitched over two of the spots to see if I could hide it, and washed it again to see if I've fixed it, or if the stitching will spoil the whole thing.

It's drying in the backyard right now, and truthfully, I have no issues with taking this whole tank and pitching it in the bin and calling it done that way. That's also being fueled by the way that the bottom edge keeps curling.  My first Flow didn't do that.)  The yarn wasn't cheap, and I'd resent it bitterly, but maybe all this trouble is an actual hint that I'm not supposed to finish it.  Maybe I do hate it.  Maybe it does hate me.  Maybe it's not a symptom of Startitis after all, because if it just so happened to burst into flames right there in the backyard right now,  I don't think I'd feel anything but relief, and I don't care if the tank knows I said that.  The thing has no spirit of co-operation, and I guess it doesn't know what I learned from my grade 11 boyfriend, which is that being good looking doesn't excuse you from being a total turd. That tank needs to get its scene together, or there could be a small, completely accidental fire.

Posted by Stephanie at August 13, 2012 12:36 PM