Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Fool is off inflicting the Twisted German Cast-on....

.. on the lads of Stitches in Britches tonight.
I've been doing some thinking about my knitting in the meantime.
I realized that this Blackwater Abbey yarn, pictured above, doesn't really want to be this sweater.
I tried, I really did, but it's just not doing what I want it to do. The little twisty stitches are not very crisp and I'm not getting a lot of definition, probably because the Blackwater Abbey is a two-ply, not a three ply.

So this leaves me impaled on the horns of a two-pronged dilemma.
1. What do I do with all this yarn?

One good way to solve a knitting problem is to throw money at it, so I bought a pattern from the Blackwater Abbey folks. It's a cabled cardigan, and I'm making it out of that rust-colored yarn. Astute observers of my wardrobe (OK, the Fool) will notice that I actually already own this sweater. It's dark green, and I'd put it on in November and not take it off until March if I thought nobody would notice. I bought it in Galway the year before I started knitting. That proved to be a problem, because when I wore it to places where I was likely to meet knitters, I'd have this conversation.

THEM: Oh, that's a beautiful sweater!
ME: Thank you.
THEM: Did you knit that?
ME: Um, no. I bought it. In Ireland.
ME: I bought it before I learned to knit.
THEM: Hmmf.

So this way, when I knit my own sweater, it will be exactly the same as my favorite cardigan in the world, except I'll be able to wear it around knitters without feeling a little embarassed, much like I would if I had to eat a hamburger in front of a cow.
What clinched it was a conversation I had with a friend about this problem, who reassured me that all the fashion magazines say when you find a shirt or a pair of pants you like, you should get two in different colors, and as long as I didn't wear both sweaters at the same time, nobody would notice.

2. What do I knit that sweater out of, if not Blackwater Abbey?

Why, Cascade 220, of course. What can you knit everything out of? Sigh. I swatched in Cascade (which, I know, I should have done before buying all this Blackwater Abbey and setting myself up for a whole new sweater project) and it looks pretty good.
The only problem is that I don't understand Bavarian twisted stitch knitting as well as I need to in order to make this sweater work. I took a picture of the swatch, but it didn't come out, so take my word when I tell you that at first, the stitches travel along the way they ought to, and all is orderly and tidy ... and then, it looks like I started knitting with an eggbeater.
So perhaps I need to spend a little more time figuring out how to manipulate these stitches without having to use a cable needle or slide two off and swap them before continuing on.
One step forward, two steps back.

3. What do mittens knit out of the Gollum-colored part of a skein of Noro look like?
This. And also? The Fool's handspun (bottom) knits up at a different gauge than KnitPicks Merino Style (top). But they go on two different hands, and they're monstermittens anyway, so I'm not losing sleep over this one.
They're warm, and that's what I was looking for in a mitten, so I'm pleased. Also, I didn't knit webbed thumbs, which I did last time I knit mittens.


LaurieM said...

Oh hurmph. I have a whack of silver Blackwater Abbey that I was going to use for Am Kamin. After reading Brainy Lady's excellent explaination of the difference between two-ply and three-ply when it comes to stitch definition, I understand your disapproval of the yarn for this pattern.

Try using twisted stitches in a sock for practice. Eunny's got a really nice pattern available for free.

meg said...

Yeah. I saw someone swatch twisted stitches with BWA, but they did it on 6s, not 8s, and they said they ended up something they could swat flies with. It's such a pretty yarn, though, I'm dying to make something with it.

mlj1954 said...

I have a sweater like that . . . did you make it?
did your mom/sister/sister/sister/niece (we're a freaking club) make it?
no. it was bought for me by my sister. The nerve.

Franklin said...

So, did Monsieur Le Fool tell you about his Twisted German round-robin at Britches the other night?

Also, my 3 vols. of twisted stitch lore are available to you at your convenience. Any excuse to hang out with y'all.