Thursday, August 31, 2006

Growth

For the most part, I feel pretty normal. I don't think of myself as someone who has a exteme preoccupation with anything in particular. There are lots of things that I'm interested in. I love music and movies. I love my husband and my doggie. I love being outside and seeing new things. I also love knitting. Somehow, it is the knitting that really draws everyone's attention - when I'm away from my knitting circle friends that is - and I don't really understand why. No one thinks it's strange when someone pulls out a book and reads while they are waiting for something. It's practically the same thing only I can still carry on a conversation while I am knitting. This week I got laughed at for bringing my knitting bag to an office luncheon. I got laughed at for making a towel. And I got several comments like "what are you knitting now?" and "you're always knitting". What the heck?

And then I realized that maybe it is a little weird. I do talk about it a lot, which fortunately I am blessed with non-knitting friends and family who put up with it. But am I all that different from a football fan during football season? However, I also realized that there are some things I do that may seem a bit odd to the outside world. Like the fact that today I carried around my Simple Knitted Bodice swatch. I don't mean I put it in my purse. I mean, it was my binkie for the day.

Basically, I played with it and flipped it around while I was worked or thought through an "argument". There was actually something very comforting about this and I found that my shoulders weren't in knots by the end of the day. But more importantly, I learned something about my swatch. It grew. It grew way more than I expected. Before washing, it was knit perfectly to gauge. After washing and playing, it went from 5 stitches per inch to 4 stitches per inch! The row gauge had a similar growth. This is huge - it is the difference between my sweater fitting me or fitting B. Personally, I think the purple would look better on me. So, I am back to knitting another swatch...and getting some more sideways glances from my co-workers.

The fabric was pretty, but there is definitely some room to tighten up - especially if it likes to grow. However, what I'm confused about is the gauge in the pattern. They highlight the fact that the pattern accounts for the growth of the silk and if you substitute, to be aware of this and check your gauge accurately. But the gauge seems to actually result the finished measurements of the sweater, so I don't see where there is room for the growth. Could this be right? I would think that if I am making the size for a 34 inch bust, the pattern would have me knit something slightly smaller, so when it relaxes it would fit properly. But it looks like I would end up with approximately a 34 inch sweater. Hmmm....

Oh well, this is probably one of those times that I am just reading too much into it. I do have to say that I really do like the look of the Cotton Twist, but the nylon strands are a bit tricky. I will have to pay attention to those really carefully because they are easy to miss and easy to snag on the following row. But once knit up - it really does provide a nice fake out for the silk.

8 comments:

knitzalot said...

The difference between football and knitting is that football is, in general, a male preoccupation, while knitting, in general, is a female one. Thus, knitting is considered silly and pointless by society.

The Stitchin' Sheep said...

No, no. The real difference between football and knitting is that knitting is a productive activity where you can actually make a practical, wearable object (dare I say piece of artwork?). Football is just a way to sit and lose great amounts of time (unless, of course, you knit while watching football).

Well, at least that's the way it looks too me, but maybe I'm a wee bit biased.

Oh, and I would sort of consider writing an email to the designer of the sweater to ask for some clarification about the gauge thing. According to her blog, she's got plenty of internetting time at the moment, and that really doesn't look like the kind of sweater you want to have grow on you (especially if you're doing the long-sleeve version and don't want Gumby arms).

Jennifer said...

Hey, I think carrying around the swatch for the day makes perfect sense. You learned a lot about how the fabric would wear, didn't you?

jillian said...

It may seem silly to "outsiders" because of society's perception of knitting. It isn't common and accepted like reading and football, so, sadly, people make fun of things they don't know or don't understand. This is their shortcoming, not yours. Binkie away!

Melissa said...

yes, they are all jealous that they dont know how to make such beautiful things, and so they pass it off as silly! I personally think it is silly to watch football without knitting at the same time... how boring

crzjane said...

There is nothing wrong with knitting at work. Those who don't knit, don't get it. They are jealous because they are not skilled enough to be able to creat something useful and beautiful. Football is senseless, running around and kicking a funny looking ball. Knitting makes lots more sense! Knit with Pride!

Theresa said...

That will be a great color for you, agreed. As for gauge, I dunno. Gauge lies. All the time. A lot. Never trust it.

Melissa said...

Thanks for the info! I just found 14 skeins of the Softtwist at WEBS for $3.75, so I had to buy it! Most of the colors were $5, but a select few were the cheaper price... I cant wait to start! How was the game??