Sunday, November 2, 2014

Swatch Out!

It is frigid here in South Mississippi this morning - down in the 30s in early November.  Yes, having come from the North, I know that’s not exactly frigid, but hello?  South Mississippi, y’all.  The neighbor said it was supposed to be another cold winter.  I never thought I’d say it, but I’m okay with that this year.  The Husband started the first fire in the fireplace last night - which I always love, I broke out a pair of my hand knit socks I’ve been waiting to wear, and unlike last winter, we actually have the yard fenced now so I don’t have to escort our Dachshunds outside in the cold. 


I spent a good portion of this past week trying to get caught up on my blog reading (a monumental task lately that I made a very small dent in).  The knitting blogosphere is filled with kind and incredibly talented people who always inspire me.  If you read my last blog post, you'll know that inspiration is exactly what I need and there is no better place to find some than looking at what others are doing with sticks and string.

Seeing so many wonderful creations from designers I love as well as the projects others have chosen to make - along with drooling over all of that dreamy yarn - has stirred up a desire in me that I normally NEVER have:  swatching.

I know, I know, only a foolish knitter never swatches.  I DO swatch when starting a project that needs to fit, like a sweater, but honestly, I do the bare minimum in order to see if I'm at least in the neighborhood of the correct gauge and that is the end of it (feel free to remind me of this the next time something I make doesn’t fit).  But seeing so many beautiful WIPs
with very lovely stitch patterns led me to pull out my two lone stitch dictionaries and thumb through them.  

I have no idea why this picture is blurry.  Seriously.
The original is crystal clear.

This made me realize two things:  1) I need more stitch dictionaries, and 2) I should really try some of these lovelies out for myself.  In the past, I have mostly just dreamed about them and don't bother getting off my fanny to go get some yarn and needles and start actually finding out which I like and which I'd like to forget. 

Did I say in the past?  That’s not entire accurate.

Must. Knit. Faster.
I'm still sitting here on my fanny.  The only thing I've managed to work on over the last week besides blog reading has been the lap blanket I'm making for donation.  Since it's a simple garter stitch blanket, I decided to practice my Continental knitting technique.  I've played around with it before, but this time it seemed to go a bit better since I have such a lot of garter stitch to do and plenty of fodder for experimentation.  Only problem is, my tension is hit and miss.  I've never been particularly good at using my left hand for anything meticulous (or even not so meticulous) and this is no exception.  I've Googled every knitter and their sister's way of holding tension and tried most of them.  I'm hoping to get a bit better at this but time will tell.

Oh yeah, back to swatching.  I haven’t.  At all.  But I do feel a bit more inspired.  And that counts, right?


P.S. - My preview of this post looks weird.  So I apologize for any weirdness.  Blogger has turned against me - blurry pics, weird layout.  I lament...


  1. looks good to me and (dropping voice to a small whisper) I don't swatch.

    I think if truth be told we are in good and numerous company.

  2. Your gauge looks good to me! And good luck with your swatching. I never swatch, but to try out new stitches, it probably is way more fun.

    1. OMG, Brandy! Your work is so beautiful and you don't swatch?? I'm SO impressed! Seriously!

  3. When I started to learn crochet it was tensioning the yarn through my left hand that caused me the most problems. I persisted though and can say that it does eventually happen.

  4. I have a feeling we're in for another frigid blast this winter too. Thank goodness for wool! I've been preparing by knitting like we will never see warm weather again. :-D HAHA. Oh, and the fenced in yard makes a WORLD of difference! Stay cozy.

    1. I love wool but am wondering if I picked the wrong climate! :-)

  5. I've been working on my continental knitting lately, as well. I'm encountering the same issues you are. It's slowly getting better. Hurrah for youtube, eh?

    I'm pretty excited about this stitch dictionary. Guess I should go order it :)

  6. Bummer, I thought the like would convert. What a rookie...

  7. How nice that it is finally cold enough to use your fireplace! As for swatching, I think that thinking about swatching can be counted as "pre-swatching." Sadly, that's about as far in the process as I ever get. :-)

    1. So far, that's as far in the process as I've gotten too! ;-)


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