Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Hit A Snag

Yesterday was sort of overcast.  I did some yard work and a bit of laundry, but spent a few hours trying to make some progress on the afghan I have been knitting for a cousin.  I was really making some progress.

Now, it is important to stop and check your work and count stitches from time to time.  If you find an error soon enough it is pretty easy to fix it.  If it is a few rows back, you can even unravel just that column of stitching and use a crochet hook to correct it all the way back up to the top.  I have done that many times and have gotten fairly good at it.  That is more a testament to my errors, rather than bragging about my abilities!

So last night, after hours of knitting, I counted.  I was off a stitch.  Where, oh where, did I drop it?  I couldn't find the dropped stitch, but I did find a huge glaring error.  Way back.  Probably a whole day or two of stitching back.  Why didn't I check more often.  Getting cocky or complacent, I guess.


It was one of the elements where you drop and then add stitches to make decorative holes in your work. It was so far back and I would have to take out three columns of stitches.  When you have that many columns that far back, it is very tedious and the chance of making all the stitches even and look perfect is very difficult.  So I took out about 20 rows.  HOURS of work.


The only bright side of this whole escapade is that I have had a very hard time with the circular needles I have been using. If you are knitting a wide project, it won't fit on traditional knitting needles.  It becomes too crowded as you knit.  My circular knitting needles are 29 inches long, so they hold a big project.  They are stored curled in the package.  I have never had such a hard time uncurling circular needles, maybe because I usually knit larger afghans.

I looked up solutions on the internet.  They all involved dipping the plastic in boiling water.  This obviously should have been done BEFORE I started the project.  So there is my silver lining.  I had to remove the needles to unravel the afghan.  Then I took them to the kitchen.


I boiled a pot of water and poured it in a large bowl.  I dipped the curled plastic part close to the actual needles in the water. I guess you don't want to dip all the way to the needles because you don't want to loosen the connection and have the whole thing come apart 


After I let them warm up in the water I let it hang straight and used my fingers to rub along the length.  There were a few places I didn't think were as straight as I wanted, so I dipped and rubbed again.


Much better.  The knitting blogs suggest making a hanger for circular knitting needles so that after you straighten them, they can hang and not get twisted again. The problem with this is that not all are labeled and I don't know if I could tell what size they are if they aren't in a clearly marked package.


I caught up all the stitches back on my newly straightened needles.  With only a little help from the peanut gallery. I guess he could tell my patience was limited! 


Then I had to figure out where I was in the pattern.  I did that.   It helps to listen to Pandora radio while I work!


 Then I noticed two different sections where I had more errors.  They are on the border.  And so far back, I know I can't fix them.


So here is my plan.  Finish this afghan, knowing that a baby will likely not notice any errors.   He won't care. In fact he will probably spit up on this, or otherwise do something of that nature.

And if his mommy notices, she will not mention it, because she is way too nice.  But I am not happy with myself.


  1. I never did learn knitting or crocheting... no patience for mistakes either. You are right though... the kid will just puke on it anyway. LOL

  2. I know your pain! I have had to learn to LET GO of trying to knit perfect blankets/sweaters/hats etc. because I have never yet, ever, knittted something without mistakes. Maybe someone else can't tell, but I can tell, and it bugs me.

  3. Oh dear! Well, at least you found a silver lining.

  4. Perfection is overrated, you know. Someone once told me that she never hired people who had perfect averages in school because those people would be difficult to train. I have never forgotten that.