You…light up my liiiiiiife….
Monday December 06th 2010, 10:08 pm
Filed under: Gauge Swatches

Just in case you need a little inspiration on the last minute Christmas knitting. Why not jazz up that boring Norwegian sweater with a bit of fun fur to light up the evening and sing karaoke for you? You, too, with Scooby Doo, can dance with the stars.

Okay, searching Ebay for Christmas sweaters was a joke. Little did I know that there was a competition for who could type UGLY in their header the biggest and loudest. This one begs the question: is it pre-Cindy Lou Who?

I am totally bowed over by this one. (So *that’s* what you do with the string of lights you could never get untangled!) But whoever designed this one was definitely having a ball.

Computer no werky
Friday June 01st 2007, 1:17 pm
Filed under: Gauge Swatches

The last 24 hours involved trouble-shooting on our 6-month-old Dell PC. Pictures here are stuck till that machine’s going again.  Just kind of squint and see if you can make out a half-finished pink shawl and a gorgeous double-blossomed amaryllis (I’ll add them later).

I went to my knitting group last night and showed off two shawls: the original from the book, and the one I’d just finished.  Same yarn.  Same pattern.  Same knitter.  Same size needles (different pair, though–I used one particular pair of size 9s exclusively while working on that manuscript, and right now it’s driving me nuts that I can’t find them).  One shawl is slightly but noticeably looser and more free-flowing than the other.  One of my friends kept going, are you sure?  Same yarn?  Same…?

Yup.  You know how Stephanie Pearl-McPhee says that gauge swatches lie?  Well, here you go.  Here’s a whole shawl as a gauge swatch, compared to the other shawl.  I think I was just more comfortable with the pattern on the second shawl and relaxed and it shows?  Or, maybe I was in more of a hurry to get it finished?  One possible and quite likely variable is if I let the water boil too hard while dyeing the first one, in which case the baby alpaca might have shrunk down to a more dense texture.  Which it does look like is what happened–and which makes sense, because that particular one got dyed more than once, so it was cooking away for more than twice the time overall.  (You’ll have to read the story in the book to see why.  I know, I know, that’s mean of me, I’m sorry–10 more days till it’s out.)

This doesn’t let knitters off the hook; you still need to do those swatches.  I learned that after a test knitter whom I hadn’t given an idea of gauge to took one of my early patterns and knitted up a somewhat tight cape, a third narrower than my matching shawl.  It was beautiful, and you could wear that just fine, just, the effect was quite different.

The other computer, meantime, is telling me to go to Dell.