Wednesday, November 28, 2007

THE HEARTBREAK OF GAUGE



Much knitting on Pebbles has been going on in between getting my mother settled. It seems to be taking a long time to get things done. I can be seen most days wearing a phone headset while listening to really bad warbly music while trying to reach a humanoid. (I had a very unsatisfactory interaction with Social Security yesterday. I checked their website, cannot be done there. I did the automated phone thing. Cannot do it there either. I asked if we could mail in forms. Um, no, don't think so. Must.Come.In. So, if I understood them correctly they insist that to change my mother's address I have to drive her to Sacramento, a three hour round trip, get her into the building (along with her walker - she's nearly 84), wait in line, explain our situation, then have her fill out forms and sign her name. I do not think so.)

While waiting I load or unload the dishwasher, knit a few rows, fold laundry, tidy the house. The knitting, alas, was not to gauge despite swatching. I started to get a clue when I used up almost two skeins for one sleeve. Hmmmm she said, this might be a tad on the large size. I've gone down a needle size and knitting two sizes smaller than I normally wear. I am using a comfy shirt that fits not too tightly, not too loosely, but just right to see if Pebbles fits. So far so good.



I've had much more success with the fit of my black poly pants. I stuck to my 97/3% rule which is where I do 97% of the project then take several months to do the last 3%. It's practically a tradition now but they are done at long last and they fit beautifully.


Knowing that my mitered square lap throw wasn't going to be done in time and also thinking something that could just be tossed in the washer and dryer was a lot more suitable for the recipient it is intended for I decided on a polar fleece throw with bias binding. Fleece, as the Enabler will tell you does not ravel and does not need to have the edges finished. I wanted a nice edging though and did many, many experiments finding the right way. The "right way" failed miserably. In fact, it sucked. I ended up cutting it off with my rotary cutter and sewing on one side of the bias tape (new, improved, involving a trip to the fabric store) and hand sewing the other side. My hands are sore, the tip of my right middle finger is punctured in many places but the binding looks wonderful. Oh, and it took hours and hours.


I have more of this fleece which I plan to use for a bathrobe and I WILL NOT be finishing the edges.


Opie can be a very interesting cat. He has taken to climbing up on your back given half a change. Bend over the sink, there he is. Sitting on the toilet? You should have closed the door. He flattens himself out and purrs and purrs.







4 Comments:

At 9:53 PM, Blogger Valerie said...

Ha ha, gotta love Opie! What a great photo. Obviously in love. What a big Velcro goofball!

Your black slacks looks so classy. How did you do the trimo n the pockets? Pretty!

I'm familiar with that gauge problem -- the one where everything G R O W S. What IS it about knitting? It just wants to be too big.

 
At 11:47 AM, Blogger The Cat Herder said...

Oh, Opie! I get that kind of thing from my cats. Its so sweet and loving.

 
At 2:12 PM, Anonymous The enabler said...

True, true, fleece does not ravel. The efforts on the binding though are well worth the results. Even for a lap throw, you should take pride in your accomplishment. Well done!

Now, about that trip to the fabric store for more bias binding - did nothing else come home with you? Not a yard? A spool of thread? I would have also said a fat quarter, but you've not yet taken to quilting (where all scraps and snippets are saved for "something yet to be determined"). Be careful. You may be drummed out of the Sewists Corps.

 
At 3:16 PM, Blogger Elinoire said...

The picture of smoochy Opie has definitely brightened up a rather dreary day. :-)

 

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