October 18, 2018

Frogs Everywhere

I think I've done more frogging than knitting the past couple of weeks. 

I can't say much because at least I'm now working on yarn crafting projects again.  Between the month of sewing I had to do this summer and some other miscellaneous stuff going on, I didn't really get back in the yarn crafting gear until the fall hit.

Sure, I did finish a pair of socks for my husband (finally, and without losing one this time!):

But the rest of the time since went like this:

  • Finish up the custom baby dress and write up the pattern (which, being a on the fly pattern, mostly involves trying to figure out how the heck you wrote down what you wrote when making the darn thing). 
  • Finally start an adult sweater to replace the one I been wearing so long I've had to darn both sleeves at the elbow (anyone remember when the work sweater was completed? It's been awhile; I can't say I'm surprised).
  • Realize that I could get a sweater done for NYS Sheep and Wool if I pick up the one I was designing and knitting two years ago and un-screw up the neckline idea. 
  • Get past the neckline, do another trim, then decide on another neckline trim to better match the other trim, redo the neckline.
  • Finally get to the sleeves, so I do the math for the sleeves, try to work the sleeves, realize sleeve doesn't fit, rip sleeve out, adjust and restart sleeve. Now sleeve is too big on cap but tight elsewhere, rip sleeve out, get peeved at sweater when as I'm not going to finish it in time for Sheep and Wool and have no clue how to actually mathematically calculate an afterthought sleeve.  I then banned sweater to the time-out corner for a couple of days. 
  • Decide that due to all the other crap that I should start a nice seed stitch cowl out of some soft yarn bought two years ago. Then I realized that the yarn is too thin to work for a good seed stitch cowl, so I surf patterns, don't like any of the patterns, get idea, try idea, rip idea out, try another idea, rip idea out, chart third idea, start idea, rip idea out, adjust chart, start idea, rip idea out, repeat two more times. I finally get an idea I'm mostly happy with off ground, but at this point I've created a time-consuming pattern for what was supposed to be an easy cowl. I resisted the urge to go find more yarn in the stash to do that seed stitch cowl.  Work on not-easy cowl on the subway for some reason.
  • Go back to sweater, figure out a way to recalculate the stupid sleeves, start sleeve again, get half way done, realize it's still screwed up, rip it out.  I then realize I was using the stitch gauge instead of the row gauge to calculate everything for the sleeve, not that my method didn't work. Recalculate using correct gauge and start sleeve again.
  • Decide to also work on getting baby dress pattern tech edited, tech editor finds first row has one stitch off of cast on, realize the one stitch off is because all the other calculations are screwed up and spend all night trying to figure out how the heck I managed to knit the thing in the first place.
  • Then decided that I should write this blog post instead of working on sleeve or anything else I decided to design or start at the same time.

I mean, it's probably a good thing that I've gotten my design groove back.  I'm looking forward to getting something out there given the time it's been since I've had actual time and inspiration to devote to this.  But why do I have to make it so hard on myself when I could just simply work on something already written or easy without struggling through all the frogs?  Then again, I write software as a day job.  It all involves sitting there and beating your head against the wall wondering why on earth you're doing this when what you did isn't working for the 5th time...until you figure it out, get something done, and feel accomplished and confident.  Then you're more than willing dive right back into another wall because it won't be as crazy this time...right?

And if I have to frog that cowl or the sleeves one more time, the yarn is shot and I won't know what to do with myself.  Probably ban it back to the timeout corner.

June 10, 2018

Follow Instructions? Never!

So it turns out that I fail at following knitting instructions.  Despite the fact that I wrote said knitting instructions.  Why, yes, I may have had to just rip out a whole weekend's worth of work because I forgot to increase in one location.

Since this is a pattern I am eventually planning to write up and most likely sell, I won't show you much, but here's a teaser (after I ripped out most of it):

What makes this even more...well, I guess what makes it make more sense is that this is the second reproduction of this pattern. Story goes like this:

  1. My sister is having (now has) another kid.  It's going to be another girl. Yay, make all the things with the yarn I got on the NYC Yarn Crawl because I got suspicious and so bought baby-appropriate yarn.
  2. Start a blanket with yarn I had from last baby making spree, pick all the patterns out for all the yarn I can think of.
  3. Promptly get nothing done because get assigned insane work project in the middle of capstone project for grad school.
  4. Hit winter break, go on vacation to Iceland (was awesome), get one sweater done for baby over vacation.
  5. Realize that all the yarn I bought is wool and baby is due in spring.
  6. Find out WEBS is having a sale.
  7. Find out nice colored cotton yarn is on sale as well.
  8. I can do matching dresses in two different colors of this yarn for both my nieces, right?
  9. Realize I don't like any of the patterns again for the style of dress I like to give kids.
  10. Make up the pattern by coming up with the start, getting half way through the top, deciding I don't like my plan, futzing around until it works out, quickly scrap write it down with calculations, and continue knitting body of dress.
  11. Start grad school again. Tons of schoolwork this semester again. Get to work all the hours again because nor'easters. Knitting? What's that?
  12. Realize baby is due in a week.
  13. Quickly finish up dress, writing rest down on paper.
  14. Baby born, yay! Realize I am not going to see baby until I'm out of school, damnit.
  15. Finish grad school. Get to work two nights right after. Somehow finish baby blanket same time.
  16. Get to see sister and nieces. Give the sad pile of stuff I actually got done to sister. I tell her 'I'm going to make this dress for the other niece', and she goes 'the dress you made her before still fits. It actually fits both of them.' I think 'going to do it anyway; need to test pattern'.
  17. Clean up notes made before, print them out, and start second dress.
  18. Don't actually read notes carefully because I think 'ah, I see what I did here' and forget to do one increase, which screws up the whole pattern.

And here we are. Back to almost the beginning because I missed one last increase needed for the pattern to work.

Oh well. At least I have time to knit again.

So this was just the last year's worth of crap going on that lead me to end up abandoning the blog for...two years, yikes!.  Grad school is completely done, work is ok at the moment, and everything else is not where I thought I would be when life went crazy, but it's now stable, so I should be getting back into the swing of things now. There's a lot of catching up to do so I may not get there right away, but I'll try to start blogging my mishaps and future projects again.  There should be a number of those shortly.