Wednesday, January 16, 2008

17. Camera-less Swatching

Oh, I finally made it to the yarn store on Wed and had a wonderful day. The shop was quite busy. On frequent occasions, I've been there and there was one or maybe two people sitting at the table knitting. Well, today, it was a full table! Seemed to be a pretty regular group too - everyone knew each other and asked about health situations, projects, etc. I think I'll try going next Wed and see if there is the same group of knitters.

And I had Sally show me how to do stranded color work. I tried (on my own - she was quite busy) holding both yarns in my left hand and trying to "pick" the color I needed. After awhile, things had slowed down and I asked her for help. So she showed me how to hold the yarn in my right, and away I went. Felt really awkward at first. And I'll never become a "thrower," but I think the two handed knitting will be tremendous for color work.

Right now, my swatch is soaking in a bit of tepid water. I'll lay it out to dry before I go to bed - can't wait to see it in the morning! Of course, you won't get to see it. I still don't have my camera home. So I can't even get before and after pictures.

Boy, it sure takes heavy wool awhile to dry! Of course, the cooler nighttime temps didn't aid drying any. But (enter scary music) these mittens are for my mitten swap partner. Her hands are not the same size as mine. The mittens I was swatching would fit me just fine. But not her. So I bought the Bird in Hand pattern today! Which comes in multiple sizes. Although, to be honest here - worsted on size 1's? Glad I don't have to go down that small. I wonder if a thinner yarn (dk maybe?), but a reasonable size needle (stay with a 2?) would give you a size small enough for that option? Well, I don't need to find out yet. My hands cramp just thinking about worsted wool on size 1's.


Chrispy said...

I would have to agree knitting worsted that small would be painful and make a bulletproof material. I guess that would be good for your swap partner if she lived in a very cold windy climate.

Minerva Zee said...

I learned how to make stranded mittens from a great book by Robin Hansen - "Favorite Mittens." (see

She includes several sizes for each pattern, so you're not required to do such incredibly tight knitting.

I went on a real mitten knitting kick after I bought the book - the explanations were so great! And the traditional patterns were all trid and true - no long floats, and it was easy to follow the charts because they just made sense.

The other useful thing she explains is color dominance, how which color you hold in which hand actually makes a difference. I never would have known! Anyway, she makes it seem easy, and I encourage you to get the book or order it from your library.