Friday, December 08, 2006

Aaahhk Two

OK--for those of you keeping score at home:

I started Swallowtail on a plane headed from DC to AZ. In the course of the less-than-a-week trip, I finished the bud pattern. Easy peasy. On the flight home I started the lily-of-the-valley chart and struggled to get the hang of the nupps. After a couple of rows I did, and then I realized that I had knitted along as if the second half of the row was a repeat of the first half rather than its mirror image. Oops. Tinking seemed too much, so I tried to run a lifeline through stitches a few rows back. (Hint: this is not an effective way to work your lifelines....) I frogged to the thread and tried to pick up the stitches. It was such a mess that in frustration I frogged the whole thing.

Then my troubles began.

I have done every stupid thing imaginable in my efforts to get back to where I was. It has really shaken my knitting confidence, too. ("I can knit lace! I can knit lace!" is my new mantra.)

So yesterday I knit that previously-missing fourteenth repeat of the budding lace, put in the lifeline, and started the lily chart. Of course, I somehow skipped the k2tog at the beginning and wound up with a miscount at the halfway mark. At that point, I almost threw the shawl out the window. (Luckily, our storm windows are down and it is a real pain to throw things out the window.)

So I tinked back, tried it again, and had success! Timeout for dinner.

I came back to start the first purl 5 together row.

And the KnitPicks needle had that weird gentle catch it had once before with a different cord....

Luckily, I was not in the middle of a row. Because of the rough end, I could not slide the stitches off the dead end of the cord. Instead, Son held the end while I transferred the stitches to another needle.

This time the dysfunctional cord is the shorter one rather than the 32-inch cord. I'll be calling KnitPicks again this afternoon. After the joy I was experiencing with their needles until it came apart, I was planning to order the whole set. But now I'm hesitating....


I PROMISE that the next post will not be about my fight with the shawl. My plan is that now that I am to the point where I frogged the thing last time, all is new and fresh and will go smashingly from now on. (Right?)

And if things don't go well, I'm not going to tell you. At least not next post--assuming the shawl leaves me in a state still able to make a next post.

And today? SOCKS!


Anonymous said...

This has just been painful to follow. I really admire your perseverence on this project.

And I'm so disappointed with the KnitPicks saga. I'd had high hopes for this product. I guess I'm glad I waited, but it really doesn't seem fair that the so-so knitter gets to avoid the trials and the amazing knitter has to struggle!

Kate A. said...

I think it would be completely legit to stick the thing under a sofa cushion and pretend it never happened. (The shawl, not the needle, of course.) But maybe that's just me. In actual fact, I have full faith that you will very soon be finishing the beautiful, perfect shawl and laughing at what you went through to produce it.

The needle thing just won't ever be funny though. DAMN. All my dreams involving KnitPicks's perfect new needles are just shattering at my feet...

beadlizard said...

I'm trying to think of something positive to write. I know, after this shawl, all knitting will seem easy in comparison!

Let's hope the new batch of cables from Knitpicks is superior.

THat's lovely of your son to help you transfer the stitches. He is a gem. Soon he'll be knitting courtesy rows for you!

Holly Burnham said... other words....well, maybe a few more...aren't lifelines really life savers?

Kathleen C. said...

You are not alone in your knitpicks saga! I recently read in another person's blog that she had the same problem, and KnitPicks told her that their early cables are defective! They are replacing them with improved cables.
I'm sorry I don't recall right off whose blog this was... I will go through my list and see if I can find it again.

And remember... You Can Knit Lace!

Bonnie said...

I think there may be a Swallowtail demon that delights in making some (but not all) Swallowtail knitters. Because it seems people are either having smooth sailing and finishing it in days, or (like you and me) running into all kinds of nutty problems.

You WILL finish. And you'll be glad you did. I'm all done exc ept for binding off. I want to take that slow, without any feeling of time pressure and/or interruptions. Because I'm still expecting SOMETHING to go wrong.

Good luck!

jasmine said...

You know I have been meaning to e-mail you about that needle saga -- sometime after your first transaction of recieving a new cable and now I read on someones blog that they had admitted to a problem and had a recall on the cables. Or at least that is what this blogger had been told -- I wish I could reember where I read it because I can't find anything about it now

The Tell Tale Heart said...

Now like all great creators, you can say you suffered for your art. While your Swallowtail saga reads like something by Lemony Snicket, I must say your blog posts have been a treat to read--very Yarn Harlotesque. It almost makes me hope the tragedies continue...well, not really. Hugs and kisses -- David

Sara Skates said...

totally weird re your knitpicks cables - I haven't had any problems with them, and I've knit several pairs of socks and mitts and a few hats with them. I'm guessing you got a bum batch - do call and whine, they should make it right.

Think of how good you'll feel when you conquer swallowtail...take a break if you must (again) but please persevere!


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