Saturday, November 12, 2005

Things learned, things done

I love learning. When it comes to knitting, I get very excited when I learn a new technique (new to me, that is) and it works! That's what happened this week. I was perusing Nicky Epstein's "Knitting on the Edge", which I do occasionally for inspiration. Well, this time, at the very back of the book, I came across a paragraph on the provisional cast on. Now, don't get me wrong. I've done provisional cast on before. About a year ago, I did the Harlequin cap (from for John; it's done with a provisional cast on. I did the crochet cast on, but found that picking up the stitches was somewhat less than successful. At least, I wasn't really happy with the result.

See what I mean? Some of the stitches just don't look right. I could have taken it out, but at the time I couldn't really figure out how to fix it without frogging the entire thing. And I did not want to do that. After reading Nicky Epstein's directions for provisional cast on, I decided to try it again. I'm making a small version of the Harlequin cap (baby size) and am MUCH happier with the final result. Well, not quite final... the cap's not quite finished yet. When it is, I'll post a picture of it. Here, however, is a picture of the cast on edge.

Much better, don't you agree? I love it! The original cast on edge was done using the multi-coloured sock yarn and a strand of cotton yarn. It was easy to pick up the stitches (with solid red) and easy to pick out the cotton yarn. I used a dk weight cotton because I wanted the stitches to be easy to pick up and cotton because it was smoother, making it easier to undo.

I managed to get quite a bit of knitting done yesterday. I'm not sure how much I'll get done today, but I do intend to finish the little hat. I've also started another small project that I'd like to get done this weekend. It's a very simple knit; I'm about 1/3 of the way through the project already and I started it at about 4:00 yesterday afternoon. You know those almost mindless projects you can work on and still watch tv? That's what this is. I'll tell you what it is when I have it done.

As well, I finished John's socks yesterday. He was happily wearing them last night and has decided that he likes the fit and feel of this pair the best yet. That's great news for me because, for once, I made notes of exactly how I made them. From here on in, I can replicate those socks any time. I'm SO glad I started making notes of all the socks I make now. If you don't make notes, do it! It makes it so much easier the next time you want to make socks for the same person. The socks?

They're made with one ball of Online Supersocke, from the River Collection. I really like that yarn. It's got some nice colourways and is comparable to Regia in quality (our yarn rep told me that it actually comes from the same factory, is the same yarn, but with a different label and a slightly lower price). I still have a bit left over, a small ball about 1.5" in diameter.

I've been checking my stash every couple of days, monitoring the smoky smell. I'm happy to report that most of the yarn no longer smells like smoke. I've decided, though, that I probably shouldn't store my stash in the bedroom. It does look neater without the pile of yarn beside the fire place. As yet, though, I haven't come across the perfect place to store it. I'm leery about storing it in the garage, even though it is an attached garage. It would have to be stored in a Rubbermaid storage bin, or something like that, in order to keep any creepy crawlies out of it. At the moment, I don't have one. I suppose I could store it in a suitcase, but what's the best way of keeping it from smelling musty after a while? Your suggestions are appreciated.


  1. I have been storing yarn in my attic for the past 30 years in Rubermaid containers with no problems. I have 5 or 6 of them and I made a database to tell me which yarns are where. The boxes are numbered. I also keep current yarns in baskets in my office and living room, tucked neatly into shelves.

  2. I do my provisional cast on with a knitting needle to loop the stitches around as I crochet the # I need. Does that make sense? That way I already have my stitches on the knitting needle and do not need to pick them up. I use this the most for casting on my sock toes.
    I've recently started taking notes on everything I knit too, and I agree that it's great to know how I did that past perfect-fitting sock. ;-) Something so simple, yet so challenging.
    I store extra yarn in a plastic pin, but if you do buy one make sure it closes all the way. Some don't, they have little spaces on the sides still. So far I've had no problems with creepy crawlers.