Monday, March 28, 2011

Kay and Ann's fault

Since my post yesterday was kind of dramatic, let's get back to our regularly scheduled program of me being crazy. Not as crazy as when I accidentally spilled my black hair color on my bathroom sink and couldn't get the stain out so I decided to sponge the entire sink with the leftover hair color, but... (It worked, by the way, and everyone always said how cool my sink was and laughed their heads off and said, "Only you!" when I told them what I did, like my usual personality gives way to people being able to easily picture me doing these things. What's up with that?)

I got the two Mason-Dixon Knitting books from the library and really loved them both. The second one talks about some harder techniques that you might like to try in your knitting to take it up a notch. I mean, I've done some hard knitting. Cookie A, anybody? Hello? Read a chart much? Have nightmares about little symbols in little squares? But, I digress.

I hadn't successfully tried Fair Isle, though. I've messed around with it before, knitting a few rows in a couple of colors, to kind of prove that I understood the concept, but ultimately never cared enough. I mean, I live in Arizona. Mesa, Arizona. When the heck do we need carefully knitted double layer super oven warm anything? We have, like, a three week long winter, if you can even call it that. Leaves don't fall off of our trees until around Christmas or in January. I didn't care enough because I didn't have a reason to care enough.

This all happened to me because of Kay and Ann, the authors of the Mason-Dixon books. I had been looking through the books, mainly in the second one, and saw this lovely circle pattern Fair Isle blanket, and it stuck in my head. When I read the TYF thing, it said that the Japanese mostly wear neutral colors. This meant that, in my head, my knitted item had to be these things: easy to care for, neutral in color, and warm. My best neutral colors in easy to care for yarn were the Naturally Caron Spa yarn I have in my stash, but they would only be warm if I worked them in Fair Isle. I never would have even come up with this idea before reading Kay and Ann's books. But here I was, designing a circle pattern for a neck warmer, ready to knit it in Fair Isle. And I did it. All by myself. Came up with the base pattern and everything.


Alas, not the happy ending I had envisioned. I cast off, and wouldn't you know that the rolled edge I had knit that seemed to magically stop where the Fair Isle started (when it was on my needles, of course, deceptive little rolling edge) now suddenly burst free of any preconceived border, rolling right past the beginning of the color work and hiding my meticulous stitches on BOTH SIDES of the neck warmer.

Turns out, of course, that this is that moment in the movie where you think, "Yay! They're safe!" But, actually, they're not, because the bad guy didn't die the seventh time they thought they killed him, either, so here he's back for the final, epic battle in which the hero tries one more time to appeal to his humanity and let him live, but ultimately, Mr. Evil is felled by his own inability to reconcile himself to what the hero is trying to say, and while the hero tries not to kill the bad guy, he finally accidentally does, and then they all live happily ever after.

So that's what this is, I think. Rolled edge not behaving? Well, fine. Reconcile yourself to not rolling past my colorwork, dudes, or I'll cut you off or something extreme. But we're trying to reign it in right now by picking up stitches and knitting an extra textured edge on the inside. If that doesn't take care of their evil ways then there will be a lot of ripping out and a lot of quasi-cussing (raggafraggafrickafraggafartnuggetspoopbuttholepoopers, etc.), which I find much more fun than real cussing, actually, because it makes me laugh. And then I'll bend this thing to my will.

I think it looks properly put in its place, though, doesn't it? Take that, neck warmer, for I am not just your knitter, but your CREATOR, and I say that your edges will stop rolling. So meh. I am knitter, hear me roar.

And, yes, this adventure is brought to you courtesy of Kay and Ann and Mason-Dixon knitting books, mainly Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines. I'm buying both of these books as soon as I can and you should, too.

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