Sunday, January 20, 2008

Of Snow and Pink Sweaters

Yesterday it snowed again. An odd occurrence here in Georgia.
Penelope found the warmest, most comfortable spot in the house and stayed there all day.
The Boyfriend and I braved the "fray" to go get some lunch. Hey, nice hat! :)
Lots of snow...
My neighbors and their kids had fun in the wintry weather. They really put a lot of thought into these snow people.
It was a good night for staying in since the temperature dropped to the teens. I watched Brit-coms on Public Television...
and worked on the pink sweater. This is where it gets kind of technical so if you just want to scroll down and look at the pictures feel free.
When I started knitting I taught myself everything. I think I did pretty dang good for someone who never asked another person what they were doing (What can I say? I'm stubborn and like to figure stuff out for myself.). Well, I taught myself to purl, for lack of a better word, wrong. On things where there is little stitch definition this doesn't really matter. However, with a large piece like a sweater with good stitch definition, it makes a difference. You can see in the following picture that the top half is done with purls executed correctly and the bottom with an "interpretation" of the purl stitch.
What I did was basically half a purl. This is how a purl should look:
Yarn wrapped all the way around from right to left between the needles. This is what I was doing:
Wrapping the yarn from front to back. That resulted in every other row (or every purled row) being "twisted" or half done. I debated with myself on what to do. Do I continue to purl incorrectly on the back of the sweater and fix it on the front? Do I fix it now on the back and make a visible change? Do I do the whole sweater with a wrong purl?
I believe that what we practice becomes habit (as I demonstrated). I don't like doing things incorrectly. I also don't want to rip back an entire sweater back that I started over a year ago. And this is a charity piece. I probably am going to send it overseas to a gypsy in Romania. And if you are gypsy in Romania sleeping on a park bench every night are you going to scrutinize the back of a sweater? Exactly. This is just practice. At this moment I'm very happy there are no "Knitting Police." I will never take this to a serious whack of knitters and show it off proudly (at least not the back). But if I did I would like to think they'd laugh it off as a beginners mistake. Here's the sweater back thus far:
A line...oops. Boy my hands are dry and gross looking...sorry. I still feel really good about the sweater. Good that I even started it when I knew little more than how to knit and how to purl (albeit incorrectly at first). Good that I have stuck with it. Good that I'm almost finished with it. Good that I know better now and good that the front will look better. Good that I shared a secret that maybe other first time knitters have experienced.
I'll admit that telling the knitting world that I had been purling wrong was a little tough. So, to make myself feel better I took a picture of Penelope basking the early morning light. She didn't laugh about me and my purl deficiency.

P.S. The actual temperature right now is 19 degrees Fahrenheit (-7 Celsius) and the windchill is 4 degrees Fahrenheit (-15 Celsius). Brrrr!!!

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