Sunday, November 05, 2006

Snip, snip, snip

We had our 4th Deep V vest class yesterday at the Grove during which we all became 'Steekers'. Now, I'm going to say something that may seem shocking - but cutting a giant hole in your knitting is FUN! The reason it was more fun that painful is that our esteemed teacher had the forethought to eliminate the emotion from the steeking process by having us practice on a swatch. By getting a chance to go through the whole process once, where we could make all the mistakes we wanted, took the fear out of it. My biggest challenge will be to not let the Type A part of my personality come through while cutting those steeks for real and just take it slow. Taking it slow helps to enure that only the proper bits get cut.

I didn't take any action shots, but I think you can get the gist of what it was like from these pictures. We learned how to make the crochet edging and then snip, snip, snip - we sliced up that knitting like it was nothing!

One challege I had with my swatch is that it was super tight through the steek as you can see above (that should really be about twice as wide as it is). Through most of the cutting, I had to pry apart the crochet edges to get to the ladders I was to snip. My two-handed knitting has loosened up with the practice and my steeks are the width they are supposed to be, so I won't have this problem with the actual vest. Thank goodness!

Here is a look at what the underside of the steek looks like after its been cut. You can see (just along the edge under the grey crochet stitches) that the knitting stitches are severed.

And this is what the pretty inside edge looks like. You can see how the crochet stitches (above and below the knitting) sealed off the knitting and made a very neat, finished edge.

Now the beauty of this process is that when we then pick up the stitches from between the body of the sweater and the inside edge of the steek to make the neck and arm bands, the steek will automatically hold in and make a hem! I am still amazed at this process and would love to have met the person who did this for the first time because they are a freaking genius.

And since we haven't had a Jenny picture in a while - one gratuitous lounging doggie picture.

Jenny has been doing really well and pretty much back to her normal self. Her back doesn't seem to be bothering her and she can't seem to get enough play time with her squeaky ball. I think she is making up for the time she didn't feel much like playing. Now we just need to save up the money for a good teeth cleaning and she will be all set. With her age and teeth (she has bad teeth like her mama) it will likely be very expensive, but we know we need to get it done before it gets any worse.

Have a very happy Sunday everyone!


The Stitchin' Sheep said...

I just love stubby dachshund feet!

And, I'm so impressed with your steeking job. I'm afraid of steeks, myself... a fear I'd better get over before starting my vest. Good idea to try it out on the swatch first.

amanda cathleen said...

freaking genius!! Your swatch looks fab, I can only imagine how great your vest must look!! Jenny looks so sweet lounging in the sunshine, awww : )

Mouse said...

Awww.. puppy feet! I bet that steeks are one of those things like heel turns on a sock.. no matter how many times you do it - its still rather 'magical'.

Jennifer said...

I'm so impressed with your steeks! The edge looks so clean and neat.

What a sweet pic of Jenny. :-)

Nonnahs said...

OMG, you steeked! And you're still alive! You're my hero!

Theresa said...

You're a braver woman than I - congrats!

Julia said...

Your steeking looks great. Isn't it a blast? I haven't done it for a few years - you're making me nostalgic!

Re: Jenny, if she is older and you are concerned about her having the anasthetic, there are mobile vets who will do her teeth at home without putting her under. We used a mobile vet for Caia, and she was truly wonderful. It's just a thought, but it might ease your worries. We never put Caia under for teeth cleaning, and it would have really scared me to do it in her last few years. Jenny looks so happy. I'm glad she's feeling spunky again.

Melissa said...

wow, good for you! I am so envious of your steeking abilities!!

Carrie K said...

The steeking looks great! That was one of the reasons I started knitting Mary Tudor, I really wanted to steek something. Yours looks so tidy and perfect.

Aw, cute Jennie picture! Teeth cleaning. Gah. Hez is due for that too. Not looking forward to it.