Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ok - I thought worsted was bigger than sport...

I don't expect a lot out of the world, really. It should keep turning on is axis, and certain established and totally inconsequential items should keep on making sense. You know, the things that I already understand, and which are so unimportant as to really pose neither threat nor opportunity to the world at large - those are the things that I prefer remain the way I have always known them. I figure it would be nice if something did, and this seems to me as if it would not be skin off anyone's nose...

The world violates this continually - as far as I can tell, it is still turning, but the fact that I needed to dial one plus my area code to call across the street was predictive of bad times for established and inconsequential items. I don't really care that you needn't be president or famous or even dead to get your face on a stamp now, but the messing around with yarn terminology is bothering the hell out of me.

I've noticed that Knit Picks does this a lot, and I am wondering if anyone can explain this to me in a way I can understand...

As far as I ever knew, you had, roughly

Fingering - very small, for socks.

Sport - about 6 stitches to the inch.

DK - 5.5 stitches to the inch

Worsted - 5 stitches to the inch and

Aran 4.5 stitches to the inch.

After Aran, the names start sounding like they describe MacDonald's meal sizes and I don't bother with them, but up to Aran, they seem useful.

What I do not understand it sportweight that knits up to 20 stitches to the inch and DK which knits up smaller than said sportweight.

In this case, the perp is Knit Picks and I will give you solid examples in the hope that someone can straighten it, or me, out.

I downloaded two free patterns from Knitpicks for pretty one skein projects.

One Pattern, the Cathedral Purse, calls for Knit Picks Shine Sport.
Shine Sport is 110 yards to the 50 grams.
An awful lot of DK weight yarn is 116 yards to the 50 grams. I know, because I bought a lot of it at one time... Different brands, different yarns, but all cotton, and all about the same length to weight. Ok, maybe Modal is heavy. Very heavy.

So then I look at the gauage, and it calls for 20 stitches to four inches. That is five stitches to the inch.

I looked back at the bag, which did not look loosely knit at all. If anything, it looks quite firmly knit. And why would you knit a bag loosely, anyway - you want it to hold it's shape and you want it to not have stitches so loose that stuff falls out. (Especially when it is not a market bag and you will not be putting large items that can take care of themselves, like Cantaloups and whole chickens, in there.)

I did not buy the assigned yarn because I have numerous balls of sportweight cotton lying around here. I am now looking with interest at various worsted weights and wondering how they will look as a bag...

The second pattern is for the Victorian Lace Headband Pattern Now frankly, I have a feeling you can use DK, which it calls for, or Worsted, which would give you a marginally wider band... (It is designed as 2.5 inches wide. that means what, about 14 Stitches? [for soem reason they call for 18, but ok...] Well, if you have 17 stitches in Worsted Weight it comes up to just over three inches. This is presuming you can't get the lace to block a little narrower and longer, which frankly seems unlikely to me.)

Or, you could probably use a real sport weight, and at 6 stitches to the inch you'd get..(.exactly 3 inches with the 18 stitches you actually are asked to cast on. So wouldn't that mean in DK it would be at least 3 inches? But they say it is 2.5)

I know my math skilz are lacking a bit here and there. I just didn't know theirs were too.

That, or these useful yarn names have gone the way of the 7 digit phone number, stamps you had to lick and car ignition keys that are actually metal and actually physically unlock something...

My dumb luck...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

All this and the H1N1 Too.

Butts with building permits and abdomens with their own zip codes - this is what it comes down to as we approach 50? Who says this is so great? May I strangle them, please? I assure you, I have been wearing clothes that don't match whenever I want to since my salad days, so don't think you're luring me with that one, world...

Anyway, I did think you knittin gfolks would be interested in some of the rest of the yarn I remembered having...

Like the Brilliance I bought for the Wren that never got longer than an inch

And the Zen I bought which has yet to even be swatched

And something else I have 19 or 20 balls each of a beige and a pale yellow, for that cabled Berroco sweater...

And then, of course, the 48 or so little balls of some kind of cotton boucle in chartreuse.

Three or four large men's cotton sweaters I have frogged for the yarn...

A bag and a half of jade green cotton somewhere around worsted weight.

Enough of this linneny thing mixed with wool or something that I bought years and years ago to make a summer top out of only it never got made and is probably all still in there.

Oh, yeah - the brown stuff that I started a shrug with, only Chris made the shrug and it wasn't worth it so I stopped...

And I think I have a sort of dark pink with darker pink, also dk...

We are not counting the sweater I knit in like 1995 which is all done except for being put together, and except for that I lost the sleeves...

But now onto the flu...

As you may or may not realize, where I live is under seige to at least some small degree. Schools are being closed. An assistant principal has died. The mayor is making at least daily public statements. There is news truck out at the county jail where the union is complaining about it...

And here I sit with one kid under six and one with what they like to call "An underlying medical condition" wondering if I should leave town, or stay put.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Why am I even contemplating this

Ok - if you have known me for six years, like Bets and Eileen and Benne, then you might know that I started out my online knitting life weighing 190 lbs at five foot two and not that thrilled about it. I did make myself one sweater at that size, true. And I loved it. But I can't say it had a slenderizing effect.

Then, I got pregnant and I couldn't knit for months and months because I got carpal tunnel.

After that I did lose some weight and got down to 140, which is where Bets and Daryl got to meet me. And I was thinking of making myself a sweater.

And now I am back up to 173 or so, look like an oil drum with a little head on it, and have decided to knit myself a summer sweater in a better size. If I get thin again, fine. If not, at least I will have a pretty sweater.

This does not make a lot of sense as I have friends who are a bit more portly than I am and I think they look fine, but I despise my shape, I always have, even when I was 110 pounds, and I just refuse to knit myself a tent. It just is not worth it.

So, I went to Smiley's yesterday and bought enough yarn for five summer sweaters, because, of course, when you feel lousy about yourself spending money is always good, right? Actually, since each bag of yarn was only 12 dollars it was really a steal - tell me the last time you saw Rowan Cashcotton at 1.20 USD a ball. (They only had two colors, but one is ok on me...) Or Nashua Ribbon. you get the drift... And trust me, I left a lot of good stuff behind - Rowan Biggy Print, some fantastic looking boucle, and a sort of airy thing in my favorite periwinkle. Besides all the worsted weight wool I did not get at 1.99 for a skein of 100 grams because - well, because I have enough balls of that wool, that very very same wool, to make not one, not two, but at LEAST three cabled sweaters, and if I could only find the two bags I bought years ago, I would have more... And I have enough 100 percent wool worsted weight from other brands to make, I dunno, off hand, another seven sweaters, most of them cabled. This is only worsted...so it is not like I am going to run out of stuff to knit any time soon..but I digress... The point was, I limited myself to five bags for sweaters and one for socks. (regia with silk for 1.20 a ball.)

So, I was thinking - just what do I have in terms of summer sweater stuff, and what can I make from it?

I have - enough - of a red cotton/acrylic blend for one of those pinwheel sweaters. Maybe something else as well.

I have enough of a very pretty blend with a multi strand for a shell or tee.

I have enough acrylic boucle for something.
(in Two colors So really, two somethings.)

I have a red slubby yarn - one shell or tee

I have this funny sort of ribbony tapey God knows what yarn in a peach variegated - enough for more than one thing...

I have WAY MORE than enough of a cotton/acrylic mix in orange, green and who knows what to make a shell, a sweater - whatever I think I can stand, really,

I have enough of a pink yarn in cotton

Green and black yarn in cotton

white yarn (not my best color) in cotton/acrylic

variegated that Betsy gave me - maybe a little short, but the kind of variegation where you could probably find one of the colors in a solid that would work for say, straps or whatever...

Enough Lion Brand Ribbon for a racer back tank.

Enough Cotton from brown Sheep - you know the stuff - it has Merino in it - for a tank, far as I can tell - maybe a tee. Or maybe a tank and the rest can be straps for the variegated...

This is what I can find offhand...
There is supposed to be more, which is probably in there somewhere...

And it does not count what I bought yesterday.

I also have access to Ravelry - not every knitting pattern ever invented by knitter kind, but close. Available on my screen, 24 hours a day, with wonderful sorting mechanisms...

So why can I not decide one flipping thing to start???????????????