Sunday, November 05, 2006

Speed Demon

My husband and I drove to Naramata on Friday. It's in the wine region of British Columbia and about a five hour drive from Vancouver. It was raining very heavily when we left and it was good to finally get out of the rain, somewhere about four hours away. While we drove I was thinking about how I love to be speeding just a little too much. Even though I wasn't driving, having someone slow in front of us was a real frustration. The fact that the last couple of hours were on a winding mountain road made it even more challenging for me to hold my horses.

That made me think about my need for speed in knitting too. I have been knitting a "camisole" for a friend for Christmas and it has been a little like driving a freeway and a country road at the same time. There were 270 stitches on the needle and I was knitting in the round. The back is stockinette stitch and I just roared along knitting up a storm. But then I hit the slow road, the little country lane of lace, a 10 row repeat, every row different from the last and each one bringing me up short as I slowly worked out the pattern rhythm. And then, when the rhythm was moving along, I hit the straight-away again and off I went, speeding again for just a few minutes.

Of course then I hit the point where I had to divide to do the front and back separately. The straps in front nearly drove me crazy. My need to speed was compromising my need for accuracy, and I made so many mistakes. I wanted to be accurate and it seemed that on every row I discovered that there was a problem with the row below and I had to back up or find the error and fix it from above. I'm surprised I stuck with it, but of course I had to, since this was a Christmas present after all.

But now it's finished. I had the time here in Naramata in the cabin/cottage we are borrowing from a friend where I finally had the time to concentrate, get the two sides of the front done and then got to do the back - in stockinette stitch although even there I was slowed down on every purl row.

But hey, as a speed demon, I'm proud of the fact that the sweater took me only two weeks to complete. I started it just two Saturdays ago, the same afternoon I bought the yarn, so it has been a success. Now I just need to steam block it and crochet a nice edging round the outsides - not a thing I'm looking forward to, but at least it's not going to be a really big challenge.

Now I'm off to get other things done. I bought yarn to make some felted woolen clogs, some yarn to come up with a hat/tuque design that's running through my head, and I also have my knit-along doily to work on. I just got that transfered to circular needles, which should speed things along a little bit there too. Those bamboo needles were slowing me down, although that may have been a good thing since I shouldn't be rushing a lace design.


Barbara said...

Beautiful knitting. The blog is going well.


SamD said...

I love the lace pattern!

Nicely done!

Rick said...

It's beautiful Nigel, and took only 2 weeks!!! I take that long to decide on making something.

Rick in Langley