Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Knitting purgatory: A story of Lenten knitting penance...

As I went to enter labels for this post, Blogger helpfully suggested "knitting crises," since apparently I've used that tag before. :0 Yes, this is the story of a project that started out so promisingly and with such love, and has become a way for souls to be released from purgatory.

You know who you are, Navy Blue Cardigan.


I started you back in November, as a Christmas gift for Mike. You are made of cashmere and merino wool and were treated like a king.  I selected your pattern so carefully, a Mr. Rogers classic style that I knew Mike would love and would look adorable on him. I stroked your softness in the skein. I cast you on so lovingly. Then I realized that your pattern called for me to knit you all in separate pieces rather than a seamless style. This was my own fault for not reading your pattern over more carefully, so I let it go. Christmas was coming, I needed to press on.

I tried not to be resentful when I knit your freaking ENDLESS back piece of stockinette fabric. Knit, ppuuuurrrrllllllll, all the way across, for a bloody eternity. I barely finished THAT PIECE in time for Christmas. But hey, you're a sweater. I know that these things take time. I didn't hold it against you and promised Mike I would keep working.

While I recuperated from my dental surgery in January I worked on your right front panel. Since it's smaller, that went faster, but the constant stockinette knitting/purling was boring me to tears. I told myself that it was necessary for a perfect cardigan for my Sweetie and kept going.

When your neckline decreases didn't work out the way pattern said they would, I admit it, I lost it a bit. I was angry. But I improvised (I do that a lot. See? Belly dancing = applicable to real life situations) and I think it turned out ok.

By the time I got to the left front panel I tried to perk up because I told myself the end was in sight. I had to add in buttonholes on this side, which kept you a bit more interesting. I wasn't crazy about the way your pattern had me do them, but I ignored my better judgement. I was making progress, that was all that mattered. I repeated my neckline improvising for this side. Voila! Instant pattern customization.

Then came your sleeves. See, here is where I should have gone rogue. Sleeves should NEVER be knit flat. Why would you do that?! ARMS ARE ROUND. When you knit them flat, you have to seam them. Apparently it is your sadomasochistic fantasy, Navy Blue Cardigan, to force a knitter to knit every conceivable part of you flat and have to subsequently seam. Why? BECAUSE YOU ARE EVIL, THAT'S WHY.

I should have ignored your pattern, yes I should have. Your sleeves would have taken me a *quarter* of the time to knit, but NOOOOOOOO, I was an obedient knitter and listened to your pattern. I knit your sleeves flat, knitting resentment into the fabric every time I got to the end of a row and had to flip the piece over to purl.

By this point, it was February, and I entered you into the Ravellenic Games competition to try and finish you by the end of the Olympics. Don't you dare snort at me, you 5 piece pile of limp fabric!! I figured out pretty quickly that I wouldn't finish you in time, but it was a good opportunity to finish one sleeve and get started on the second.

By the end of February, you were off the needles, not that you deserve it. You pattern told me to block all of your pieces before seaming, which I obeyed and for which I should be canonized someday. I bought buttons for you. Then I attempted to start the seaming.

When I realized that the front panels were a good 2 inches longer than your back piece, well, Navy Blue Cardigan, I'm not ashamed to admit that I lost my temper. I threw your pieces and I said some things, but you know what? I DON'T REGRET THEM. Do you know how many times I measured your pieces and consulted your pattern to assure I followed all directions?! Countless! And yet this happens?! It's *not fair* I tell you!

In a moment of panicked inspiration, I re-blocked your front panels and back piece, placing them side by side this time and stretching the back piece out to match the others in length. This has made you a bit longer than I'd like, but at least you now you don't look freakish. YOU'RE WELCOME.

Then last night I started your shoulder seams. The fact that I had to do a shot during this process should speak volumes, you ungrateful thing. Yes, that's right, I can now see that your neckband will never work the way your pattern says it should and I officially have nothing but hatred for you, Navy Blue Cardigan. I did your shoulder seams, but pulled back the neckband, because it's just all wrong.

You'd better be having a WORD with your designer, Mister., and I'm certain you know which word I'm referring to.

I'm going to have to improvise the neckband, but I left that for now. I worked on seaming up your buttonband, hello, STUPID!! Totally unnecessary, but again, just following the pattern here! And the band is so freaking long that I'm now worried about running out of yarn, and I still have your sides and sleeves yet to seam!

Navy Blue Cardigan: I had to walk away from you for a spell last night because I was so angry. All of the time I have invested in you, and this is how you treat me? I won't forget this. I do plan to continue working on your buttonband tonight and start on the side seams, but I won't enjoy it, and *neither will you*. Placing and seaming your sleeves may require whiskey and become a near occasion of sin. My only hope is that after all of this, you are remotely wearable.

I think I deserve something nice in compensation for my pain and suffering on this one.


1 comment:

  1. This is hilarious! You totally amused me today. (And now I know why I've never taken up knitting!)


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