Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life



For the past few days, I’ve been feeling very ‘meh’ about my knitting. When I thought about why, I figured it was because I’m not overly excited about any of the projects I’m currently knitting.  I also couldn’t remember the last time a large project rolled off my needles.  Isn’t that weird?  I had to go back to my projects list on Ravelry and check.  It was the Autumnal Cardigan, and that was way back in November! Two months without a large project completion.  No wonder I feel weird!

I have knitted quite a few things recently.  But they’re all wee projects, and they don’t feel like an accomplishment.  I’ve also had a few not-so-great knitting experiences and suddenly I’ve started thinking that everyone else’s projects also look far better than mine, and far nicer and more technically perfect as well.  Talk about a large confidence crash!

Although I adore cables, I suspect the fact that the two extensively cabled projects I have on the go are also not helping.  I need to see progress, and these projects are taking their time about looking anywhere near done.

This is my latest completed project, which feels like a fail:

I think it’s okay.  It does the job.  But it isn’t a wowser.  This teapot cosy is the fourth one I’ve done.  The first, you saw, and I was very happy with it.  The second, I thought was ok.  But it’s too small.  It’s going to be sent to a better home with a smaller teapot.

The third looked like the above cosy.  My concentration got broken while I was stitching it up though, and I managed to sew it all the way up, and not leave a gap for the spout.  Trying to unpick the stitches, I ‘artfully’ managed to unravel the thing right through the middle (as in, separating the top from the bottom).   I’m still wondering how one thread of yarn from one side of the cosy managed to become permanently attached to the other side when it was not knitted that way, and how the other side could then unravel with no obvious end coming loose!???  The temptation to angrily cut it into tiny little pieces was pretty big.  I threw it all away in an appalled fit of disgust and hopelessness instead.

This final result (I am officially done with cosies) is my prototype for a future garment design.  I want to create a vest with random striping like I’ve done here.  It’s almost hand-dyed effect without the hand-dye job.  However, the colours and striping sequence are placed where I want it, without being at the mercy of the dyer.

It’s an interesting exercise in texture and colour in any event, and at least I have worked out how I might effect the random stripe.

Yesterday, I decided to start a project that looked like it would show me some happiness in a quick way:

This is Cedar Grain, a birthday present for one of my sisters.

When I went to bed last night, I had completed the first section and knitted 6″.  It’s an all-in-one design, and I felt very happy at having already knitted a third of the skirt.  It was so nice, flying along with my knitting, watching the pretty design appearing, enjoying the lovely soft yarn.

In a more hopeful mood, I got up this morning to do more, and realised that not only had I not put in the garter stripes, but also that I’d knitted a couple of extra rows without starting the decreasing.

I took the thing off the needles to rip out the extra rows, and suddenly realised that I’d knitted a tent.  It was mega enormous.  Eric (my 8yr old) was in fits of laughter at how big it was.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at this epic fail.  I just stood there, holding this gigantic wrapped around me twice, completely flummoxed at how on earth I’d not managed to notice how large it was.  Between giggles, Eric noted that it would fit Aunt Sponge in James and the Giant Peach.  (We’ve just finished reading the book).

The thing got calmly ripped.  I may have been biting my lips, keeping back language not fit for children’s ears.  To take the edge off, I went and mowed the lawns.

And that, my friends, is sometimes the problem with gauge.  I did do a swatch.  I measured carefully and found that my gauge was actually a little smaller than it was meant to be.  So I knitted a larger size, calculating that it would come out the size I wanted.  Except that it came out at least two sizes larger than it was meant to be.

The good thing is that I discovered this early on in the piece.  I no longer need to worry about not having enough yarn, and at least it will go quicker this time, because I will be casting on again with a whole 40 stitches less!!

Wish me luck.


Author: kiwiyarns

Welcome to my blog where I talk about knitting in New Zealand and the beautiful yarns you can find here.

11 thoughts on “Nonplussed

  1. I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been having some knitting woes. But your knitting looks gorgeous to me!
    I’ve been having some knitting trouble recently as well. It seems like I’ve run into some sort of problem with each knit I have on the needles. It makes me want to cast on something new!

    • Hehe. Why do you think I started my sister’s coat!?? I wonder if it’s just this time of year (post Christmas, etc) that’s making us feel this way.

  2. oh dear! You have my sympathy. You have made me feel better about the two projects for which I have swatched extensively but never actually started, due to the difference in gauge.

    Four tea cosies is quite a lot, no? Perhaps it’s time to do something lovely, less practical and just for you. The vest sounds lovely.

  3. I find your knitting inspirational. When I read about the volume you output… so many projects..just amazing. Even what you think is a fail looks great! In my current big project in bamboo yarn, I am hoping that the effect of compensating for a gauge difference (even though I am using the recommended yarn!) will work out at the right size. I will cry like a forty year old baby if it has to be pulled apart.

  4. Gauge is a mystery sometimes… Wishing you lots of luck! It looks great 🙂

  5. Good luck! Maybe you became less stressed while you were knitting; I know that sometimes happens to me. Plus, the fabric will probably end up stretching a little length-wise…

  6. Looking good and your muse will return! Relax, read some books, buy some new yarn, it will come back!

  7. Everyone hits a funk now and then. Maybe distract yourself with some non-knitting? (I know — heresy!) Sometimes you can plow on through a funk, but sometimes a break will also light a spark. Be good to yourself. 🙂

  8. I never seem to be able to determine whether something will fit properly until it’s all knitted and seamed. It’s very annoying.