Why this journey?

I've been retired now for over a year. Husband has been sick but is now doing quite well with new pacemaker. I continue to knit and knit and crochet. Recently I became friends again with my sewing machine so you will see some of those projects, too. Thanks for reading.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Now the 'real' fun begins . . .

I finished the last Level I swatch last night.  Swatch 6.  I skipped over it several times, unintentionally, and then got so caught up in projects that I kept setting it aside.  Decided, finally, to finish it so I could complete the knitting phase of the Master Knitter designation, Level I.

Remember those mistakes?  Those swatches I knit without carefully following the directions?  I needed the yarn so I unraveled a couple of them and spent some time restoring the yarn.  I used the rejuvenated yarn for Swatch 6 -- Lifted Increases.

Started with 15 stitches, added one each side on
every OTHER right side row 5 times.  Ended with 25 stitches.
The small holes extending below the green bead are
the added stitches.  They will be less visible after blocking.

After unraveling, I dunked the yarn in cold water, strained it, rolled it in a sham-wow, and then laid it out to dry.  The yarn has to be wet to remove the shaping formed by the stitches you've unraveled; it looks like ringlet curls until you put it in cold water.  

Here's the wool I needed plus some white cotton yarn I unraveled from two false starts on a shawl.

It's wet, really drippy wet.  I put it in a strainer to let as much water as possible drain away.  The weight of the water can stretch the yarn, so I want it damp, not dripping when i finally hang it to dry.

Looks a bit like pasta, huh?

A bit of cream wool (top, center) drying with the
white cotton, both on a hanger.
It hung for at least a week or more like that.  Until last night when I decided I needed to roll it into a ball so I could knit with it.
Rudolf, you've made a real mess of that yarn.  

Finally sorted it out.  Much easier since twas just a few yards of wool.  I would have taken much more care had it been an entire skein (which I've done!)  Once it's wound into a soft ball, I can keep it tidy in my new Knitting Bowl, a Christmas gift from a very dear friend who 'gets it' that I really really really love to knit.

Partially completed Swatch 6 with restored yarn in the
Knitting Bowl.  Rudolf standing guard.

The real fun(?) begins with the next part of the process -- the paperwork.  The swatches and the paperwork will go into a 2" binder when all is done.  Each swatch must have an accompanying page with details about yarn, needles, and references I used to work the required stitch combinations.  Then a research paper on blocking (steaming and setting the shape of the final pieces), and finally a set of questions and answers about each swatch.  Lots of paperwork.  

I haven't figured out how to knit while I type.  So each bit of paperwork means no knitting.  

Well, not exactly no knitting -- isn't that a double negative or something?  Anyway, I think it means I will be knitting, just not on hats or swatches.  Goodness knows I have lots of UFO's and plenty of yarn heading into 2012.  And I'm makin' my list and checkin' it twice -- so I can Knit lots of things Nice.

Merry Christmas

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