Friday, January 04, 2008

the first lesson

i had the feeling that when i set myself the challenge of "a sweater a month" for 2008, i was going to learn a lot. and it's true - i've already had my first lesson, and i'm only on day four.

lesson number one:
if you're knitting away at your sweater, and you think that something is wrong, stop knitting. even if it means you have the hassle of taking all your very many stitches off the needles onto a piece of waste yarn, lay your knitting out and look at it. i mean, really look at it.
don't, as i did, keep knitting until you've knitted two full balls of yarn before checking your work. if you do, this might happen:

it may be hard to tell from the photo, with nothing in the background for a size reference, but this piece of knitting (which is meant to be the bottom band of the cardigan body, which i'm knitting in one piece up to the armpits) is approximately eight feet wide.
ok, so i'm exaggerating a little. but it's clearly so far away from its intended size that i should definitely have paid attention to my brain when it said quietly to me (after only the third or fourth row), "hey, this looks as though it's going to be too wide. why don't you lay it out and measure it, and then measure yourself, instead of just following the pattern blindly?". clever brain. sigh.
and if, like me, you haven't listened to your oh-so-clever brain when it told you this at the beginning of the sweater, and kept knitting through two full balls of yarn before finally acknowledging that there was a problem, this might happen:

double sigh. however, all is not lost - the beauty of the chunky yarn and big needles means that by this evening, i should be back where i was this morning (which is progress, albeit of the alice & the red queen sort). and this time, i've done my math, and my measuring, and more math, and more measuring, and i've concluded that the pattern is completely & utterly wrong & i should just wing it from here. after all, what's the worst that could happen? (for the answer to this question, reference the above photograph).

& in case anyone's wondering, info on january's sweater can be found here, or here if you're on ravelry. but whatever you do, don't believe the pattern when it tells you to cast on so many stitches for the body (unless you're actually eight feet wide, that is!!)


Flavaknits said...

I had a laugh when i read this on their site...
We take pride in providing knitting and crochet patterns that are correct and easy to understand. All patterns are translated from Norwegian and you can always check the original pattern for measurements and calculations.
Go to original pattern for model 103-1.
All patterns are carefully reviewed, but we make reservation for possible mistakes. In the case of discrepancies please post your remark in "knitting help" or contact your local Garnstudio retailer.

Maybe the patterns were actually written in Danish and they got confused!
Hope it goes better now - and well done with your New Year resolutions!

TangledFrog said...

Oh, looks like you have a TangledFrog. Sorry...been looking for a lame excuse to use that. Love the look of the pattern, and can't wait to see in appropriate dimensions!

soCherry said...

Gah! That's so annoying! Love the pattern though - can't wait to see it :)

Elaine x

Anonymous said...

Hello, I might have already left this comment and perhaps the internet ate it but please bear with me.
I am knitting this cardigan too! It is worth noting that the jacket is quite flared and the pattern has you decrease quite a bit as you get to the waist...

Emma said...

good to know-i'm about to start that one, too!