Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sweater is Coming Along....

The sleeves and shoulders of my laser sweater was finished and blocked about three weeks ago. Then the project stalled. It wasn't lack of inspiration or steam, I just basically hit the wall due to over stimulation from outside sources. My house got invaded by Danes, and now that they are gone I am packing for my vacation to the Pacific Northwest. And "NOOOOO-o-o-0", I am not taking my project with me since one of my fears is that airport security would confiscate my knitting needles since they do look like weapons. Those knitting needles of mine comes from an expensive set and I'd die if those neanderthals got their hands on it and chuck it into the trash.

Never fear, when I get back, I will have a friend take pictures of me steeking the collar. I will try to give a detailed step-by-step instructions along with pictures so that you can reproduce how I steek and pick up stitches for the neck opening. Trust me, it will be very painless and almost foolproof (I hope).

So, check back about mid-August. Hopefully I will be back by then and not hopelessly lost somewhere in the San Juan Islands.

Enjoy the summer and keep knitting!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


The sleeves and shoulder are progressing well, far better than I expect it would. Now all I can hope for is that my sailing and racing skills will improve in time to equal my artistry with knitting needles. The Laser is a frightfully powerful sailboat, and I am sure it will take time and practice before I become comfortable with it. Sailing a Laser, like knitting, takes diligence and practice before you can master it.

As you can see, one sleeve and the shoulder is done. Now I am working down the other sleeve. You may notice that I've stopped cabling the central pattern and just knitted it straight. That stockinette portion is my steek ~ where I will cut it open, pick up stitches and knit the neckband. Never fear, I will have someone take pictures of this process so you can see how I do it.

The piece is getting long, floppy and unmanageable, especially when you are knitting it back and forth. My solution to this annoyance is to swaddle the piece.

Swaddling is simply taking a cloth and tying up your work in a nice bundle while leaving the working end free so you can continue knitting. The compact bundle is much easier to maneuver rather than having the work sprawled all over the place. I've swaddled just about everything; the body and sleeves of a sweater while working on the yoke, scarves, lace projects, etc. The bottom line is that if the knitted work starts becoming unwieldy, then swaddle it.

Swaddling your knitting also has the added benefit of keeping it clean while you are working on it. The cloth used for tying up the bundle would protect the knitting from pilling and/or felting as you constantly shift it around while working on it.

All in all, it is a very simple and effective solution! I hope you will consider swaddling in your future projects to keep your work neat and sharp looking.