Knitting Friends

I am always glad I’m a knitter but never so much as this weekend when I contemplate the wonderful people I have met through the clicking of needles.

This weekend I sat and knit in a hospice where a knitting friend is living out her last days. I have been to 11 knitting retreats that Sharon and her friends ran and she has been to 4 or 5 of the retreats that I run. Double the retreat fun. We are retreating buddies.

At the Sudbury retreat Sharon baked a cake every year as a treat after the Friday evening entertainment. It was always the first thing I wanted to check out when I arrived.

001One particular year we wondered if she had lost her baking mojo since the cake was decidedly lopsided. Not her usual perfection. She told us it took her three cakes to get it to look like that.

 

Sharon had become obsessed with the moebius or more like moebii (is this the plural?) because from her Mary Poppins carpet bag she pulled out moebius, after moebius, after moebius, after moebius.

This is the moebius cowl I knit in her class the year before.

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In profile it looks like this. Thus the lop-sided cake. (If you want to bake one, the secret is to put something under one side of the cake pan as you bake it to get the correct shape. I’m sure you’re running off to do that right now!)

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A moebius cowl would have been called a dickie in earlier times. As Sharon was baking these cakes she kept reciting “moebius dickie, moebius dickie, moebius dickie”. Which became … a lopsided cake with blue icing and whale cookies circling the outside. I’m sure you’ve caught the reference.

My rendition since I don’t have a photo.

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Have a piece of cake and toast your knitting friends with me. Yum.

Thanks for reading,

Deb

My patterns on Ravelry

Double Decreases, which one to use

Lace knitting involves lots of awkwardness and sometimes you have to work to make it as pleasant as you can. There is a chart to read and if you screw up there you’re in deep trouble, yarn overs which can be easy to miss and decreases where the slant is important and needs to be kept track of. Lace knitting is beautiful, the more complex, the more beautiful. It’s hard to resist.

 

 

 

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The lace dress that I almost didn’t wear. My wedding glitch.

Can we remove some of the pitfalls? Knitting Techy Talk begins here.

First of all you need Markers. In the body of this lace sweater I was working 20 repeats of the pattern.  Without markers I could make a mistake in the second repeat and not realize until I didn’t have the correct number of stitches at the end of the round. That would be the end of lace knitting for me, right there, that round. The knitting would be winging it’s way across the room as the air turned blue. I did that with my first lace project. I have learned a few things since then: Use Markers.

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With markers after every 10 stitch repeat, how far wrong could I go? Believe me I corrected quite a few errors within those 10 stitch repeats as I was knitting this top but I didn’t have to rip rounds back. (OK, I admit there was that one section I had to rip back but I was already so far down that I didn’t mind doing it.)

Unfortunately, for this stitch pattern the markers created a problem. Sometimes you just can’t win.

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double decrease blog post, 123

 

The Double Decreases (the inverted V) at the end of the repeats are the problem. Once the markers are placed the Double Decreases used in this pattern are awkward to work. The 3 stitches involved in this decrease are numbered on the chart and you can see that the Marker is between stitch #2 & stitch#3. There lies the problem.

This pattern uses this Double Decrease: Slip 1 stitch knitwise, knit 2 stitches together, pass slipped stitch over. Easy enough until … you add in markers for each repeat.

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double decrease blog post, 123

This is really how it works: slip stitch#1 knitwise, slip stitch#2 purlwise, Remove the Marker, Replace slipped stitch#2 back onto the Left needle, knit 2 sts together (sts #2 & #3), pass first slipped stitch over and Replace the Marker. AWKWARD.

I decided there needed to be a change. You’re allowed, I’m allowed, we’re all allowed to mess with patterns. I changed that Double Decrease to a Center Post Double Decrease.

Center Post Double Decrease:  Slip 2 stitches together knitwise (sts #1 & #2), knit 1 stitch (st#3), pass 2 slipped stitches over.

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With the markers in place this really works as:  Slip 2 stitches together knitwise, Remove Marker, knit 1 stitch, pass 2 slipped stitches over, Replace Marker. DONE.

Yes, it looks different but the ease of knitting made it totally worth the change.

I like the result.

Thanks for reading,

Deb

My patterns on Ravelry

My wedding glitch

It’s been a busy holiday season. We had Christmas, New Years and our daughter’s wedding. If you’ve been through the wedding roller coaster you’ll know it’s a wonderful and joyous occasion, with many small glitches and ultimately, an amazing celebration. These young people can really throw a party!

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I did finish my wedding top and then almost didn’t get to wear it.

My lace top turned out longer than anticipated and yes, I was sewing the ends in the day before leaving. I had made a dress. What should I wear with it now? I had anticipated wearing slacks so I had to scramble to put together some alternatives. I asked two of the bridesmaids to accompany me to my hotel room to help make the final fashion decision: slacks vs different legging options. I took everything out of my case and … no dress. OMG. I was sooo careful to put everything in the same bag when I packed. How could I have left it at home?! I swore the girls to secrecy and sent them back to the bridal prep room. Paul and I quickly decided we would go shopping for a new top and when I opened the closet to get my coat, you guessed it, there it was. I had no recollection of putting it there. None. I know, the wedding is not about me, but my dress IS.

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More on the process of knitting it in the next couple of posts. And more photos I hope since I didn’t take any, not one. Now it’s back to my regularly scheduled life. It’s hard to adjust but I’m sure it will click back into place in the next week or so.

Do you have a wedding glitch story? It would make me feel better since I felt like an idiot.

Thanks for reading,

Deb

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My patterns on Ravelry