Category: knitting confessions

Knitting Confessions #7

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below.  

Confession #6: Hand dyeing yarn is fun, until it isn’t.

This is going to be a long confession because the pain is still so close at hand. First up…
Dyeing yarn can be a lot of fun, especially if you are just doing single skeins. When you are trying to do enough yarn for a sweater in the same color, it gets a little trickier. A while back I overdyed some Knit Picks Wool of the Andes sport into a lovely dark pumpkin orange for my Peabody sweater. After laying the six skeins out to dry, I thought I had done a pretty decent job of matching the color across all of them. I was pretty pleased with myself.
Fast forward to this weekend – my Peabody is finished, seamed, and blocking. When I notice the shoulder of one sleeve is visibly, disturbingly darker than the rest of the sweater. Boo. A whole number of things went through my head, “It’s still wet, maybe it’ll be less noticeable when it’s dry? No, it’s too obvious. Wait, isn’t that the same skein I made the other sleeve with? Yes… it is, and that sleeve is way darker than the body of the sweater. Well, will anyone notice that if I just don’t put my arms near my body while wearing this sweater?” 

After about five minutes, I gave up trying rationalizing letting this mistake slip. Even if no one else in the world noticed the color difference (I would just have to make sure to surround myself with colorblind people, right?), I would notice it every single time I pulled out the sweater. And it would drive me nuts and diminish my love for this sweater. And I had worked hard on it, and I wanted to love it fully, as it deserves. So I knew I had to redo the sleeves. (This is where I thanked the stars that the sleeves were seamed into this cardigan. That, and the fact that the yarn in the body wasn’t glaringly different in color. It could have been so much worse.) 
So I undid the sleeves and am redoing them. Fortunately I had one skein of yarn left that, at first glance, looks like it will match up more evenly to the body. (Please, please work. I do not want to knit these sleeves a third time. Sleeves are my least favorite part of sweaters….)

I also had a whole other dyeing conundrum this weekend with some mystery yarn I picked up a church rummage sale. After doing a burn test, I was convinced it must be some natural fiber – it definitely didn’t burn like acrylic yarn. So I tried dyeing it with some food coloring. At first it all looked swell, but when I went to rinse the yarn, all the dye washed out. That was a sad Saturday. So Sunday, I headed over to Michael’s to pick up some Rit dye and see if that worked better. After hours sitting in the warm dye pot, it came out looking great. When I rinsed it, it was a beautiful silvery gray. I was really excited how this was turning out after the disappointment the night before. But when I added a bit of soap to make sure all the dye was rinsed out of the yarn – bye bye color! All the dye washed out again. It was a very sad, no good Sunday. Needless to say, I threw out the yarn. It was a bit mangled from being heated, and I was just so frustrated I didn’t want to even see it any more. 
So dyeing yarn can be a lot of fun. Until it isn’t. 

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Knitting Confessions #6

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below.  

Confession #6: I enjoy seaming.


Seaming gets such a bad wrap in the knitting scene, but I like it! I like the fact that seamed garments are made in pieces, so you get that fuzzy “new cast on” or “just cast off” feeling while still working to finish the same project. But more than that, I actually enjoy the seaming process itself. I’m not sure I can exactly explain why, but it makes me feel very accomplished when I finish a seam and it looks lovely and clean. 
Maybe seaming takes a special kind of person. Or maybe it seems like everyone hates it because the complainers whine loudly, while us happy seamers are just too busy chugging away on making straight, polished seams to speak up. So I’m putting my knitting needle down, picking up my yarn needle, and sticking up for seaming. (It’s really not so bad guys. Give it a chance!)

What is your hidden knitting secret? Share your link below! And if you shared a knitting confession last week, please feel free to add that link as well!

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Knitting Confessions #4

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below. 

Confession #4: I always have far too many projects on the needles at the same time.

For this confession I rounded up all of the sweaters I’ve got sitting around in assorted states of unfinish. 

It’s a wee bit overwhelming to have them all piled up in the same place when the are usually scatter about in different baskets. Some are from last winter and left to hibernate throughout the summer. Others have been cast on since then are slowly growing into cardigans and sweaters. But gathered all into one place, it becomes inherently obvious that I have a bit of a problem: my knitting ambitions seem to be a bit greater than my available free time and attention span.

There is a good thing about having so many assorted projects going on at the same time – no matter what type of knitting I’m in the mood for, I can usually find something to work on. Although that means that things get attention in fits and bobbles, which can make for slow going for some things. I’ve resigned myself to knowing that’s just how I enjoy knitting.

And I love all my projects and look forward to casting off each of them in their own time. As long as I don’t get too many more items cast on in the mean time.


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Knitting Confessions #3

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below. 

Confession #3: I am a no good, terribly bad, frightfully selfish knitter.

Cherry at Knitting in Pearls fessed up to this weeks ago. But I have to admit to it as well, I am a very selfish knitter. And I don’t particularly feel a need to rationalize it. It’s just the way it is. Knitting is something of my own and I like it that way. My yarn. My knitting time. My finished goodies. Mine mine mine. So selfish. 
But I do envy all those lovely people who delight in knitting so many lovely hats, scarves, mittens, or even sweaters for their loved ones. I often find yarn or patterns that would make just spot on gifts, so I buy them or bookmark them. But then all my good intentions often get pushed aside by my boorish selfishness. Someday I may be a better, kinder knitter. For now, I console my selfish conscious by knitting Andy a pair of socks every once in a blue moon. And I can always make myself feel a bit better by reminding myself that I am not alone in my knitting selfishness. Now, back to working on that sweater I adore.

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Knitting Confessions #2

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below. 
Confession #2: I am a lazy gauge swatcher.

This one is bad, isn’t it? If we were to break knitting rules into categories such as “Go on and break me,” “More of a guideline than a rule,” and “Never ever break me on penalty of knitting death,” I think not knitting your gauge swatch falls into that last category. It’s pretty darn bad. Knowing this, I still usually don’t do it. And when I do knit a gauge swatch, I usually never do it to the full recommended four inches and I never ever wash the swatch afterwards. I am a very lazy knitter when it comes to gauge swatches. 
All of this is not to say that I never measure my gauge, I just do it after I’ve already started a pattern and then adjust from there. I’m usually not too far off on the gauge when I use the recommended needle and yarn weight, so I can usually just loosen or tighten up my knitting to get the correct gauge. And I feel an inch into a project, a small change in gauge isn’t going to be too noticeable after blocking (I do block my work, at least. I’m not the worst knitter out there). 
Until this practice really comes back to bite me in the butt (which I fear after almost every single project I finish), I probably will just continue on my merry way. Once I really mess up a project after not knitting my gauge swatch, I give you all full permission to point me back to this post when I was so smug about never swatching. It’ll serve me right.

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Knitting Confessions #1

Like most things in the world, knitting has a set of rules and conventions. Sometimes, we knitters break them. This is my knitting confession.

 On Mondays, I’ll fess up to some of my own, personal knitting “no-no’s”. Feel free to join me by blogging some of your own weekly confessions or stories of breaking knitting conventions and join the linkup below. 
Confession #1: Working with straight knitting needles makes me feel old fashioned.


I don’t usually work with straight needles because many of the projects I’m drawn to require circular needles due to their shape or the number of stitches. Although I learned to knit first on straight needles, I quickly moved to circulars because I desperately wanted to make my Totoro sweater. I went straight from making a simple project on straight needles to socks and sweaters, jumping right over that obligatory scarf/wash cloth/anything rectangular phase. 
I think because I don’t commonly use straight needles that when I do, they seem out of place and old timey in my hands. I blame the knitting stereotype. The old lady knitting with straight needles is inescapable.

Part of me feels like everyone sees knitting as the “old lady craft,” and it is directly identifiable in pop culture by the straight knitting needle. So in using it, I play into that stereotype. All I need is a few cats and a rocking chair to make it complete. (Now that I think of it, a rocking chair sounds kind of awesome. I think I want one of those now.) But me, a young, cool knitter, I don’t fall into this stereotype, so I feel drawn to use anything but straight needles. And that idea is totally silly, because Wikipedia (reliable source of all human knowledge) tells me that circular needles were actually patented in 1918, but were in use before even then and double pointed needles are believed to be the oldest type of knitting needle. So really, it doesn’t matter what kind of needle I use – they are all old fashioned. (And knitting itself is definitely old – like 1AD old. Woah.)
 It’s what I make with my needles that can make me a unique knitter. And really, any knitting I do, 
regardless of the old lady stereotype, is cool because I enjoy doing it and it makes me happy, and what could be better than that? Besides, if I really cared what other people thought of my knitting, I probably wouldn’t do it publicly, on the subway every day, right? (Though, to be honest, straight needles do take up a bit of space on a packed subway – believe me, I’ve been there.)
Plus, Gromit uses straight needles, and he’s one of the coolest knitters I know. So I’m getting over my knitting stereotypes (partly through force because all my interchangeable circular cables are currently associated with several projects) and embracing a newfound fondness for straight needles and the bounty of projects they can be used for.
Bonus cartoon for my own amusement:
Do you feel you fall into knitting stereotypes? Or do you have your own knitting confessions? Join me and share your own knitting confessions. Your confession can be anything knitting related: rules you always seem to break, conventions you just don’t understand, or stories of when something in knitting just went wrong. Together we can all work through our own naughty knitting habits.
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Knitting Confessions

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