Friday, September 18, 2015


What exactly constitutes a work-in-progress (WIP) vs. an unfinished object (UFO)? Does a certain amount of non-productive knitting time need to pass to transfer a particular project from WIP to UFO? Or maybe it is location, WIPs floating to the top while UFOs sink to the bottom of the knitting basket? If something gets transferred from knitting basket to closet, then it definitely becomes a UFO, but what about all those good intentions that remain? Maybe if the knitter gets a grip on startitis, those quasi-UFOs can bubble up and return to the realm of WIPs.

The Easy as Pie blanket is a case in point. What usually happens to stall a project is a snag of some sort, and in this case, I could not reconcile the instructions to pick up 49 stitches along the edge of a square with the fact I could come up with only 48. That, and the onset of summer when knitting wool feels just plain wrong, relegated this project to the bottom of the knitting basket. Now that autumn is trying to ease summer out of the way, the blanket squares have emerged. Some commentary on Ravelry verified that there really are only 48 stitches to be picked up, so I feel vindicated on that point, but now I seem to be short a square. Did I lose one or what?

Fortunately, between my notes on Ravelry and this blog, I was able to ascertain that an earlier snafu left me with the choice of either making a 3x5 blanket or knitting another square to create a 4x4 one. My circles are not divided between two motifs as the pattern dictates but spread out over seven, so I have two squares of most motifs and three of two of them - except for the missing square, of which I have only one. No one else would probably notice, but my knowing that one motif would be represented only once in the blanket is something I can't live with. So now I need to make another square, but it has been so long since I knitted that part of the pattern that I am feeling a little stuck, AGAIN.

Meanwhile, the bathroom curtain is almost done, STILL. All I need to do is bind off while picking up stitches along the way, to create the sleeve for a curtain rod. That is ALL. What holds me back is the need to baste that row of stitches to be picked up, to make sure I stay on course while binding off. Why is that so difficult for me to do?

Sometimes I think my issue with finishing a project is that the end marks the Day of Judgment. Will this knitted object turn out how I envisioned? Will it fit? Will the recipient (even if it is me) like it? Will it look homemade vs. handmade? Will others mock? Will its flaws scream at me every time I look at it?

Despite all the socks I have knit, even they can be daunting to finish, but since they are usually meant as xmas gifts, they get done, the results be damned. I haven't knit many pairs this year, but they are the epitome of portability when it comes to knitting. I might not actually work on them while dragging them hither and yon, but I like the idea of having something at hand in case the need arrives.

What about you? What's your excuse for all those UFOs? I know you have some.

Monday, September 07, 2015

Turntable is DONE

August 12 was National Vinyl Record Day, and I tried to finish the Turntable shawl then. It was not to be, though - the knitting was completed August 13, then it sat for a few weeks before I finally gave it a quick bath and gently blocked it.

Since this is knit from alpaca, I didn't block it all the way to the dimensions in the pattern, as alpaca has a tendency to stretch. Still, I was within a few inches.

Pattern: Turntable, by Hilary Smith Callis
Yarn: Alpaca in undyed dark brown (suri/huacaya alpaca blend from Raval and Tess) and natural beige (suri alpaca from Zathura), from Turtle Creek Alpacas
Needles: US6 (bound off using US8)
Modifications: none

This is one of the easiest shawls to knit, as it is garter stitch all the way. The only tricky part is the increase rows, and they are tricky only because of the mindfulness required to execute the increases instead of knitting merrily along. But even if you mess the increases up a bit, the pattern is very forgiving.

One problem I have had with shawls is when out and about, as the shawl rarely works under or with any of my coats. This soft beauty, however, can serve as a scarf in transit, then shift to shawl duty once the coat is ditched, the perfect solution to chilly restaurants in winter. I anticipate getting a lot of use from this baby.