Saturday, April 14, 2007

Priorities

It has been exactly two months since I last took stock of my WIPs and UFOs. Back in mid-February I was becoming overwhelmed by a gathering army of WIPs and said:

I had better make a list of priorities and stick to those as much as I can. OK, the top three:
  • No 1: Miles's baby blanket, without a doubt.
  • No 2: Sven's scarf, before the weather warms up.
  • No 3: Elle lace socks: because I'm quite a way through & I'd like to finish them.

I am slightly amazed to note that in those two months I finished all three items on the list plus the sky-blue socks for Joe. What do you know, this prioritising thing really works.

Let's consider what has now found its way into the WIP list.


Rainbow spa socks. I've nearly finished knitting the second one. They won't be in use until I've obtained some slipper soles to sew on the bottom.


Grandiflora.

When I realised this project wasn't going to make a spring deadline, it mysteriously ground to a halt.

Perugino Throw

Making good progress, despite being frogged and re-started from scratch the other night (this is a 'before' photo).

It was a wrench to make myself frog this much knitting, but two things about it were upsetting me.

Firstly, the right-hand edge (not shown here for a good reason). In this pattern, you use six yarns and have to carry them all up the right-hand edge of the item. That's a lot of thread and it is inevitably a bit bulky and messy. First attempt at this Perugino, I made the mistake of pulling the unused threads too tight, so that the fabric ruched and then wouldn't go back to a nice, soft drape. So that bothered me.

Then, on sitting down with Perugino for the first time in ages the other night, I realised that I had not bothered to read the pattern properly. Oh, the shame. You use alternating mohair and ribbon yarns in this pattern. If you follow the instructions, when using mohair you purl on the wrong side. When using ribbon, you knit on the wrong side. This creates an attractive appearance of 'knotted' ribbon on the right side of the work. Trouble is, I blithely assumed that I was going to purl on the wrong side on every row. What a dolt I am.

I frogged the lot and restarted from scratch. It is looking a million times better.


Red Jitterbug Socks


These have made so much progress in the hours since this photo was taken; I'm already knitting a heel flap.


This yarn is amazing. The colours are deeply saturated and that's a pleasure. The main thing, though, is how quick this yarn is to work with. It is 100% merino, soft and about as thick as a yarn can be while still qualifying as 4-ply weight and not DK. I'm knitting 60 stitches on steel 2.5mm needles and it is flying along. I've never knit so fast.

Probably the rational explanation for this has to do with the relationship between needles and yarn in terms of diameter and surface texture. Experientially, though, it's like the yarn wants to be socks. You know how with some items you have to force the swatch or garment off the needles and the yarn resists transformation at every step? This is the opposite. This yarn wants to be socks so much that it cannot get off the needles fast enough. I have to knit really fast to keep up with it. It is like the Magic Porridge Pot.

I think these are going to be a gift for Frances.


Purple AY Lace Socks

This is a satisfying pattern and I want to finish the socks. I also want my 2.75mm circular needles back.


And my stitch markers.


Tammy Top in Cotton Tape

Sadly neglected, even though it's a really nice top and the weather is warming up now.


I think that's all my current WIPs. OK, I will not let this long list make me feel guilty. Let's just calmly nominate three items for immediate completion.

  1. Rainbow spa socks. I will have to send off for some slipper soles, which is a pain, but I am so ridiculously close to finishing the knitting. I might be able to do it this very afternoon, even. Let's just finish the damn socks, then they won't look at me accusingly from the living room table any more. I hope I can still find the button.
  2. Red Jitterbug socks. I need one easy sock project for when I am out and about. The Yarn Harlot frequently refers to 'your travelling sock' as though it's a safe assumption that every knitter has one.
  3. I can't believe I used up two of my three wishes already! OK, in that case there is no doubt that item no. 3 has to be the Perugino throw. I told Justine I could finish it in 3 months, and with my travel schedule I'm not here for two. It is her wedding present, and looking much better since I restarted it. So let's get it done. I might see if it's faster on different needles.

So, that's that. Suddenly life feels a smidge easier.

2 comments:

jill73 said...

Wow - love the rainbow spa socks!

The tammy top is gorgeous too.I'd be itching to get that finished and be wearing it if that was me!

Susan @ Damn, Knit & Blast It said...

How Many WIPS???!!! You must have "start-itis"...

All so yummy too :-)

It would drive me mad to have that many on the go ... I'm going slightly crazy with two !

I'm "one WIP" Kinda girl (I seem to finish things faster :-D !!)