Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Tales of the first knitting class

I went to my first knitting class last night. I describe myself as an advanced beginner: I've been knitting since I was about 8, taught by my patient and most wonderful MawMaw (shown here with DD), and knitted dishcloths for about 20 years after. A few years ago I adapted the dishcloth pattern to a blanket, which took 5 years to complete, but therein began my journey in knits more challenging than dishcloths. After the blanket, I knit several Jiffy Baby Sweaters, another blanket (wedding gift), a toy backpack (for my yet unborn DD), placemats and knitted metal, beaded napkin holders for my MawMaw, and most recently scarves, hats, a knitted top, and poncho. It seems like quite a list to put in one paragraph, but now you have the full gamut of FOs.

Anyway, back to the class - so I consider myself an advanced beginner, and a sloppy one at that. I hate to block, hate to gauge, hate to weave in the ends. I like to knit. So, I signed up for the intermediate class thinking it would take me a step beyond.

I went to the first class last night and loved it. There were 6 women plus the instructor, and each of us brought our own projects. However, I was really surprised and pleased to discover I was pretty advanced compared with the other women. Perhaps they were in a class too advanced for them? Perhaps I was in a class too basic for me? No matter - I was thrilled to be able to teach some of them something while the instructor was busy helping others. Wow. Maybe I do know some stuff!

I was able to advance on the honeymoon cami, finishing the right back side (1 of 4). Today I gleefully accidentally missed my morning train, so I knit the right front side (2 of 4 down). I'm noticing that my gauge is tighter knitting the sides than the body. I don't know why that is, and I hope it doesn't throw off the look of the sweater.

I'm not 100% in love with the twisted rib border, but I found it hard trying to find a different border that worked with the number of stitches in the pattern. Besides, I do feel so new to knitting garments that I figured I'd follow the pattern once through and then make changes if I knit it again (which I may do if it fits well). I love the graceful, feminine sloping curves in the body, and I love the yarn. HOWEVER, my yarn has "yarn flares," like sun flares. I don't know if it comes through in this picture, but the yarn snags and pulls out of place creating a tuft of threads that won't lie down. I love the look, feel, and texture of the yarn, but it sure is a pain difficult to knit.

Today I'm wearing my first adult sweater! It fits perfectly and is shaped very nicely after sending it to the cleaners, although the neck is still loopy and uneven. No matter - it's my first sweater and I can't possibly NOT wear.

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