crafts · knitting

I’m a weird knitter

 The title says it all. Yesterday (Saturday) I cast on for the Cable Down Raglan.  After a few false starts (what? you want me to cast 108 stitches onto DPNs? I think not!) I think I’ve finally got the gist of the pattern, and I’m exactly halfway through the first pattern repeat.

(this is less knitting than it looks like here, maybe 2-3 inches)

The problem?  I am not having fun. I just find making cables and reading charts to be really tedious.  I don’t mind a cable row every few rows.  That can be fun and make for interesting texture.  The problem comes when I’m having to make bunches of cables every row, and when the chart has a key that I cannot memorize (because they all look similar, and even when looking at them I want to switch them around… and color-coding isn’t helping)  Really, just ask the half-finished Shedir hat that languishes in the windowseat. I seem to be unable to learn this about myself, as I keep attempting cabled projects, getting bored, and quitting.

Another interesting thing about this pattern is the tightness of the guage.  Knitting worsted weight yarn on size 6 needles produces a very dense fabric, which makes nice cables (in theory,) but which I’m not necessarily in love with.  Here’s a closeup of one of the cables.

Sorry it’s all crappy looking, but my cables always look like that.  I think it’s because I don’t like them, so I’m always in a big hurry when they appear.  I know how to cable without a cable needle, but that doesn’t really seem to help my speed any on this project.  And I don’t know why the yarn looks pink here, it’s definitely purple.

So why am I a weird knitter?  Because I love stockinette.  Adore it.  I also love ribbing and textured patterns (I was all about the basketweave pattern in the Jess jacket.)  I like lace so long as it isn’t crazy, because lace has a symmetry that I find soothing.  I love crocheted features.  I don’t even mind seaming that much.  But cables… bah.  They make me crazy.  And charts. I think this is an instance of where my background in counted cross-stitch works against me.  The charts don’t work the same way, and this makes me nuts!

So I don’t know about this sweater.   I’m not going to go frog it immediately or anything, but I’m going to wait and see if I still want to work on it.  I stand very firm in my belief that knitting is supposed to be fun, and I refuse to knit anything I don’t enjoy.  Projects can be given up without guilt!  Of course, I may change my mind, because I’m fickle like that.

Of course, I don’t know what else I’ll knit right now, but I suppose I’ll find something… my list it is long.  For instance, I bought this pattern awhile ago.

It’s from Knitting Pure and simple.  I like the seed stitch border, and I ain’t gonna lie… I am really disappointed that it doesn’t say what yarn this is.  I suspect it may be one of the Rowan DK tweeds.  I don’t actually have an appropriate yarn for this, although I have been looking!

And I’m considering buying Lace Style just for this shrug.

I’m really trying to find something I can make for my wedding, to wear over my shoulders in church (no, it isn’t a rule, I just like the idea of the shrug.) I like rectangle shawls, but I don’t really want to have to fuss with anything.

10 thoughts on “I’m a weird knitter

  1. I was reviewing the Cable Down Raglan pattern yesterday (I’ve been so scared to actually start) when I noted the casting onto DPNs part. I thought it was totally crazy. So did you just cast on to your circular? Why in the world would the pattern suggest that many stitches on DPNs?!

  2. Oh yes, you are a weird knitter! LOL Just kidding but this is one area we are very different. I love cables, adore charts, and stockinette bores me to death! (Actually, I’m probably the weird one.)

    I totally agree that knitting should be fun. I was just talking about this with a friend the other night… how I need to do more lacey or cabled projects because I don’t enjoy it as much otherwise.

    Anyway, one thing that might help with the charts. I usually create my own chart on Microsoft Excel and make it easier for me to read. For example instead of dots and dashes, I’ll put K, P, K2tog, etc. Of course, in my hopeless weirdness, I also love spreadsheets of all kinds and recreating charts.

    And I agree, the shrug is gorgeous!

  3. I couldn’t agree more about the whole chart/cable thing being boring. I’m just finishing up an aran sweater and, at times, I found it quite tedious. Bring on the stockinette!

  4. I am with Tammy on this. I love complicated patterns. I like cables (on medium to large needles).

    I take longer on a stockinette project than on a cabled project because I lose interest before I am done. I have learned that if I have a large field of stockinette that I should do something else to occupy my mind such as being with friends or playing a board game.

    I am motivated by challenges.

    Maybe sometime you and I could knit a project for each other and then we could have things we really like but are not fun for us to knit.

  5. I love that shrug. I speak from experience when I say you don’t want a shawl bugging you on your wedding day! Go for the shrug, in something luxurious – silk and cashmere?

    Good luck with your cable raglan, the colour is very nice.

  6. I really agree with you on cables. Shedir was a pain in the you-know-what. The only reason mine got finished was because it was the only project I took on a business trip and I didn’t have anything else to work on!

    My advice? Ditch the raglan if it isn’t fun. There are so many other things to knit!

  7. I thought that the Knitting Pure and Simple sweater had the yarn used listed on the pattern. I will double check, but Diane is great about email replies. You might ask her.

    Jimmy Beans Wool has it as the kit of the month this month and Yorkshire Tweed DK is on sale for the kit, in addition to already being on sale. It is a fantastic price on the tweed.

  8. So if you’ve decided to give up on the top down raglan… do you have other plans for the yarn?? If you have no further use for it, I’d be interested. The e-bay seller only has 4 skeins left in the grape.
    Let me know!

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