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Absolut Dementia

Did you have a nice New Year's Eve/Day?

I did.

It was great to come back to all those sweet comments - warm and fuzzy-like, even for someone (like me) not prone to warmth-and-fuzziness. You guys are great.

I wish I had the underwater photos right now, but my version of Photoshop (silicon-dated to the late Neolithic age) doesn't support the ORF format we did scuba snaps with. Take my word (for now, anyway) that the diving was great.

On the surface, I knit and knit and knit and knit and knit (what's the past tense of "to knit", anyway? "I knitted"? "I knit"?).

I steeked at armholes and neck,

I did my neck shaping with decreases leaning towards the steeks to cleverly maintain pattern continuity,

I carefully unknotted all my ends:

and adjusted start-of-round tension to make the jog noticable only as an interruption of pattern before weaving tails.

I hand sewed the steeks because I didn't have access to a sewing machine (and because I think machine sewing and knit fabric don't mix, period), and sliced away

and then I picked up and knit the ribbed edging along the top edges of front and back.

I was immensely pleased with myself for working out the shoulder overlap just right....

until - thud. There was no way it would have worked; terrible planning on my part (suprise!). The steeks made the fabric six layers thick at the lapped portion of the shoulder - neck steek, armhole steek, and knitted fabric for both front and back, stacked and folded and crammed and wrestled with to be able to pick up sleeve stitches through all layers. Ugly, bulky, thick and awkward - ixnay.

Besides, once it was knitted up - and this is a thing I've found to be true with nearly all my so-called "designs", despite competently-laid plans and plenty of thought - the proportions just looked wrong. It needed to be shorter below the armhole and longer above, and narrower all around. I decided that simply splitting the work at the armhole and working back and forth would be the simplest solution.

This morning, on the way to the airport, I started knitting again.

I knit while waiting an unexpected hour for our delayed flight,

I knit during the safety brief,

I learned to purl with two-handed Fair Isle while the kid behind me rehearsed for her Riverdance audition on my seatback and prepped for the World's Screamiest Six-Year-Old competition.

Now I have a piece with a completed up to the armhole and all the way up the front. Unfortunately, the tension is all wonky on my purl rows - I really need to knit my Fair Isle circularly to keep things even until I have a little more practice. Maybe wound steeks, with the ends unraveled and woven on each round, are the answer?

This baby shower starts in ten hours. What to do, what to do?


Wow, I am happy to see you're not getting discouraged. Keep on knitting! I am already in love with your "so-called" design. I know of companys publishing patterns that leave the sorting it all out to you. But you are a perfectionist. Hope you'll share the pattern once it's done. And for the babyshower: Show them those pictures, they'll be in awe when they see all the work going into this.

Make a quick trip to babies R us and buy some cloth diapers. They are good as diapers in case they run out of disposables, they make great burp rags, and then they finish out their life as good glass cleaning cloths.

You can also tell them you were working on a sweater but aren't happy with it so they will get it later. :)

Missed you! Can't wait to see the underwater photos.

Welcome back!!! And about the sweater based on how fast you knit the up to the arm-holes part... seems like you might even be able to pull off a miracle and finish. Good luck!

I recently discovered your blog and it has become one of my favorites. Your comment about your so-called "designs" really struck a chord--it sure can be frustrating to think something works perfectly on paper, then find it goes awry on the needles. Having said that, it looks to me like you have lots of ideas, have successfully completed some great designs, and will probably work out the kinks in this one too.

Absolutely beautiful, the colors are great! Glad to hear you had a wonderful trip!

Doh! I'm impressed that you were even willing to rip. I think I would have kept going and tried to convince myself that everything was just fine.

How did you hand sew the steeks? I'm working on a Dale cardigan and am going to crochet the center steeks, but I'm looking for an alternative to machine sewing the arms. I have a hunch there isn't really any other option, but I thought I'd ask what you did. Thanks.

The fair isle looks great. I'm really impressed. Can't wait to see those scuba pics. I think knit in past tense is knat. If it isn't we should make it so.

OMG...I am in total awe of this! The colors, the fair isle, and the fact that you've made the pattern up yourself is so awesome. Can't wait to see it finished! You can do it : )!

Hi Eunny, fist off, thanks for the pattern. (SO late in thanking you , I know, I blame it on the holidays... really...) I realized Jan 1st I had 11 (!!) WIPs going, so unfortunately I have to wait at least until I get the # down a bit to begin a new pattern, but I can't wait!! I have faith you will finish, but if you don't, I say draw a photo of the sweater, bring in a swatch of the pattern and tell her it is almost done. (I got the idea from last minute knitted gifts.) you could even knit a mini sweater ornament for her and it can also be baby's 1st ornament (if that is her persuasion!) keep it coming! you rock! -erincatherine

Ack - frogging after all that painstaking work and steeking? In the long run, it was the right thing to do - but how painful that must have been. Take along the sweater to the shower and give them a sneak preview, and if you don't want to leave them empty handed, how about a few nice children's books - Goodnight Moon, for example.

Welcome back!! That Riverdance kid goes on every flight to and from PR just to let you know.

Dude, I can't believe it didn't work out. Ten hours? Show these pics? Keep knitting? Move?

I say give 'em the wonky one and say, your kid is wonky anyway. Oops, that wasn't warm and fuzzy at all. Is that a pair of scissors you somehow snuck on the plane?

Wow - thanks for all the great photos of steeking in action. Bummer about it not working out!!! Um, knit a little hat and promise something bigger is on its way??

Gorgeous sweater! And is that scissors I see on an airplane? When did they let those on!?! LOL

Gift as is. And revel that scissor are allowed on planes again, as far as knitting purposes go. Welcome back.

Holy friggin amazing!!! What a beautiful sweater--an heirloom. Someone should kindly point the parents toward this post to know that they have not only a beautiful sweater but a technical masterpiece.

That IS amazing.

But, there is nothing like the feeling of holding up an unfinished gift and saying "This is just a preview!" Your case is special, though. You will be holding up a preview of a real work of art there.

I can't believe it didn't work out! It all seemed to be going so well! I say show the parents what you've got so they know they have something spectacular to wait for. And keep knitting away-maybe you'll finish! I, too, am going to a baby shower today to give a handknit sweater that I knit twice but it's not as spectacular as yours will be!

Eunny, I found a Print o' the Wave pattern online -- link at my page -- how does it compare to yours?

All I can say is , WOW!

Welcome back and Happy New Year! If it were anyone else, I'd say go buy a gift, or give them photos of the sweater. But at your pace, you'll probably have it all figured out and cute by the shower.

What worries me are all those tails to weave in. They are like - er - a zillion? If it weren't for them I'm sure you could finish the sweater before the party....

Show them the pictures on the blog and they'll understand. You've put a lot of work into this and you'll get them the finished product eventually. Hell, its a shower, the kids not even done baking yet.

The fair isle looks amazing - I'm sure you'll get around an issues it already looks great!

beautiful pic from your vactaion! sounds like you had fun.

i am amazed by your fair isle. it is looking gorgeous. and i know you can pull it off.

10 hours? I'm the last person who would be letting facts and logic interfere with a plan, but what about a fair isle hat?

Woohoo - I just saw that you won best new knit blog - how cool is that?!!! Congratulations!

OMG!! What went wrong? There is no need to rip anything -- there is always a way to fix it.

Why didn't you like the steeks? Too much bulk you say? Then you did something not quite correct in that case. There should be no bulk at all! And heavens, no! You don't have to weave in all those ends! This needs more work; I'll have to get back to you on this.

Those are a good choice of colours -- nice design. And congrats on the award!

clean sweep of the blog awards? just a note to say congratulations on being finalist for the Best of Blog awards! well-deserved. http://www.thebestofblogs.com/?p=70


What a wonderful picture. You'r so amazing - knitting and knitting, ripping and then reknitting (and at such amazing speed)! I'm sure it will be done and ready with a couple of hours to spare.

Hi Eunny! I was wondering if you had any advice for hand sewing steeks.

I just wrote and then deleted the most long winded email ever trying to explain my desire for this knowledge. (I figured it would be a better blog post than short novel in your inbox.) Long story short: I don't have (or know how to use) a sewing machine, have almost no knowledge of how to sew beyond what I know for seaming sweaters, and have a project coming up that will necessitate sewing steeks or coming up with some creative solution that would prevent me from having to sew steeks. (Crocheted steeks are possible, but would require some reworking of the pattern.)

I totally understand if you don't have the time, patience, or desire to explain the technique you used to hand sew steeks, but if you happen to feel like it, any information you have would certainly be appreciated.

sincerely, The Sewing Spaz

Beautiful sweater!!

But I'm even more amazed that you were able to take scissors and knitting needles on an airplane! What airline did you fly?? And where do you live?? I didn't think those things were allowed anymore. :o)

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