Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Must. Get. Gauge. ALWAYS

The gnashing of teeth you hear is me. I've finished the pieces of the KAL (Knit-A-Long) sweater I've been slaving away on for the past one and a half months. I'd love to show it to you but right now, I'm in the throes of assembly.

Yesterday, I was in the throes of WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAT????????????? as I tried to "block to measurements. Only to find that it's not right. I mean, really REALLY not right. As in about-2-sizes-smaller not right. Crap.

I could blame the yarn. And I might. But...I also need to blame myself. My stitch gauge is right on. 20 sts = 4" and that's what the directions say. What they also say is "30 rows = 4 inches" and that, my fellow knitters, is what's wrong. I'm 1 1/2" too short. Well, I'm not. The sweater is. That measurement takes it from a Large to a Medium. Which isn't going to fit me in this lifetime. Even though the bust measurement is correct, it's not gonna fit. Ever.

So. I'm going to assemble it anyway. And if the Knitting Gods are with me, I'll get the 2x2 ribbing done in time to give it to my mom. For her birthday.

Not that I don't WANT to give my mom a hand-knit sweater. And not that she won't like it. It's just that this was something I was very happy to knit for myself. Because it's only my second sweater. Ever.

And Sonda's not around to help me finish it. I'm on my own. Even Maggie Righetti couldn't help me because her instructions for weaving horizontal seams made no sense. I got it from and it's working. But it's annoying.

I usually am right on gauge. That's not a brag. It's just the way it works. And for some reason, this yarn, probably because of its thick-thin-thick-thin texture, threw me off. (See, I can blame the yarn if I want to!)

I have two options. Frogging isn't one of them. I could toss the whole thing into a bag and bribe one of my fellow stitchers to finish it for me. Or I could just suck it up and do it myself.

Believe me, the "let Doris finish it" option was very tempting. But I have to learn this stuff. It's like making socks: scary till you understand it.

This will give me the impetus to GET GAUGE both ways for the bolero I want to start. And it also makes me think that perhaps my mother will get a few of my WIPs because they're too far along to frog. I may as well have SOMEONE get some joy out of them. (sigh)

So my hard lesson to you, Knitsters, is to always get gauge. Believe them when they say, "Save time now by doing a swatch." It's that important.

Happy 4th of July to everyone! Stay safe. If you're in the heat wave like we are, stay cool and hydrated. And please, please, PLEASE take care of your pets. Keep 'em inside because of the heat AND the fireworks. They get scared. And it's your job to protect them.

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