Saturday, November 17, 2007

I am addicted and loving it!

Last night, after months of anticipation (literally, since I purchased this kit in September and brought it on vacation with me, intending to knit on it while at the beach) I finally cast on for my merging colors capelet last night. I almost had to delay for another few days because I didn't have the correct needle length, but Karen saved the day and let me borrow what I needed.

I sat down after dinner last night and sorted through my yarn. There are 8 colors, some very close to each other in color and shade, so you have to keep each color separate and very clearly labeled. It is very soft yarn. I had gotten as far as winding the yarn into 2 balls for each color while on vacation (without a ball winder!). The two balls are necessary because you have to use as many as 4 strands of the same color at once. I read the instructions for the mobius cast on, read though the instructions I have for a mobius cast on from a class I took, and went to the website to look at the photos. I want this to come out right. I was actually nervous by the time I started this cast on. It's the e loop cast on, which is simple, but then you pick up the backs or underside of the stitches with the opposite needle so that your needles end up going the opposite way and there's a loop and twist in your cable. That's not explained very well, but you have the link to the site so you can check it out yourself. It's under the help section.

Anyway, so I did all that, counting carefully all the time. 120 e-loops, pick up the back of the stitches for a total of 240 cast on stitches. Then you go on to knit them, and I counted as I did that - I got half way around and I was missing a stitch. Or was I? I had counted carefully the first time, why would I think that my second count was the correct one? Hmmm, should I go on or start again? Press onward, I say. Now the second half of this row involves taking the stitch on the left needle and turning it around before knitting, and the instructions say that you cannot just knit into the back loop. Of course, without that instruction that is exactly what I would have done, but since the instructions were very clear, I did as I was told. This is an important project and I want it to be right. So I tediously take each stitch, trying not to let is slip off either needle, turn it around, place it back on the left needle and then knit it. These are tight stitches, though, and they have been sitting on the cable for a while, not on the actual needle, so things are not moving very smoothly. I was pretty sure that I dropped one or two in the process of working the stitches along the needle, but thought I had picked them up correctly, so I worked on. I got to the end of that section (thank goodness) and looked things over. I counted stitches and came up one short - one stitch! Should I rip it all and go through this torture again?

I look it over and decide that I think I see where the problem is and I think I can fix it, so I will do the next row until that spot, fix it and put it away. This is my "NY for Thanksgiving trip" knitting. I change colors - more about that in a minute - and I start purling. I get to where the error is (I think) and fix it. Does it look OK? I think so but maybe I should knit further so I can see it among other knitted/purled stitches. Before I know it I am at the beginning of the round. Wow! That was fast! I look for the error, I think it looks fine, since I can't find it anymore, and say to myself OK, put it away now. But I am having fun! I don't want to. I'll just add the next color and knit a few stitches. The next thing I knew, I was at the stitch marker again - new round. I had to be very firm with myself to put this project away, and it is calling to me already this morning - just a few rounds to get the day started right. Just a few rounds while you get the laundry stated. Just a few rounds.....

The addicting things about this project are (1) the yarn is so yummy. It comes in a kit, so I can't tell you what yarn it is, but it feels soooo soft. (2) The color changes. There are, as I said, 8 colors and you kit with 4 strands at a time. Each time you change, you only change one of the 4 strands, so the colors change slowly - hence the Merging colors name. It is fascinating to see what changing one strand does to the over all look of what I am knitting and I can't wait to see what comes next!

I am going to have to be very firm with myself over these next few days. I have laundry to do, housecleaning to do, errands to run and maybe even some Christmas shopping to do. If I let myself start knitting on this I will not get anything else done until it is finished. Maybe, if I am good, Santa will put another merging colors kit under the tree.....

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