Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Double the ...

Fun?  Several other words come to mind... as I cast on for the fifth time.  First, I want to say I have NO harsh words for the designer.  She has been SO helpful, from 6,000 miles away, and I certainly would be casting on many more than 5 times if she hadn't given me some very helpful tips.

The story:  Startitis, again, Spring, what can I say!  I purchased Knit. Sock. Love. last week and now I'm in love with every sock pattern (again). So I went back to some ideas:  Doublefun from Think Outside the Sox.  My first assumption turned out WRONG...  I thought by "double" I was going to be knitting two-at-a-time socks with one sock inside the other.  I've heard of it, and never tried it, and, since I'm obviously BORED need a challenge, I was ready to go!  Then I looked at the instructions.
Many things were missing:  Where does it say connect the stitches in the round, or how do you finish off the socks?  At the toe?  The needle size seemed big, and there are only 40 stitches cast on.
I was having a tough time visualizing any of this, so I cast on, 80 stitches, because surely they mean 40 of each color, and with 2.5mm needles, because surely (I talk a lot to Shirley) 3.5mm would be too big for sock yarn.  I got nowhere.
Then I went to Ravelry for the second time and really looked at everyone's comments and photos.  I discovered everyone was making the "stocking" length, which has completely different instructions, and they looked much clearer than the anklet form I was attempting.  Turns out that Ravelry had split the pattern into two separate patterns, which makes perfect sense, since they are so different.  I found one reference to a knitter exclaiming that he was knitting socks flat, with standard needles, and that put me on the road to recovery.  Flat!  Imagine that!
I followed the instructions, again, and since there was a comment about how important needle size is, I used 3.0mm (compromising what I thought was right with the instructions) and this time I tried the double-knitting technique I used on a previous scarf.  AHhhhh.  Now, I can get started.  But then I realized that I was knitting both sides of the sock in double knitting which means that my foot has to go between the layers!  Yes! ... uh, No...  In the above picture are attempts 2 (bottom) and 3 (top).  Attempt 2 had lovely stitches in two layers, but the bottom is "sewn" shut.  I looked at the pattern.  Yes, I did as explained, but it says Side B should be facing, and when I cast on Side A was facing. 
Can you see what a patient person I am?  *
At this point I'm back on Ravelry and now sending a pitiful message to the designer,  Leena Siikaniemi
AND I cast on attempt 3, which is a mini version, just to see if it's possible to make an opening at the bottom.  YES!  I finally feel it's going to be alright.
I'm so glad that Leena doesn't go to bed early, and has no life on Tuesday evenings, because she was online in a flash, and sent me 3 emails with some important information.  And I confidently cast on for the fourth time, to H... with the instructions, I know what it should be, but I'll give in on the needle size and used 3.5mm.  There has to be SOMETHING correct in the book...

I knit 3 rows and woefully show my friend, and wonder what it will look like with those big loopy stitches... and I receive a final "good night" email from Leena.  She included these words:

The most irritating mistake is how the notes tell to begin the rows. Every row begins: knit 1, purl 1 with the yarns: knit under purl in the beginning of a row.
A big thing is that the notes get the needle size to be too big. I knitted them on 2,5 mm needles.
((Oh, how much I sent information to make good instructions)).

I was crushed and relieved, too!  There you have it... I started at 8:30 am and by midnight I had three rows.

*A loop cast on... it can be looped holding the yarn in either hand, this I discovered because I'm ambidextrous, and that determines which color will be facing you on row one.  I know... TMI

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