Breaking News: Haunted Sweater Seizes Area Woman
January 29, 2009
Holy cow, I think my mom’s sweater is haunted!
Get this: yesterday, while wearing the cabled fisherman’s sweater my mom made 30 years ago–back when she was, you know, alive–I found myself strangely drawn to the top shelf of my closet, that netherland where unfinished objects marinate until they either decay, spontaneously unravel, or otherwise meet some dismal fate. At a time of day when I usually scramble around fixing dinner, I found myself in my chair–the chair where I do my best knitting, that chair that comes into play when I’m SERIOUS about something–with a project that I haven’t visited since preblogstoric days.
I mean it–without a blink, I sat down with this project and almost failed to feed my family, just like my mom used to do. I haven’t given this sweater a thought since I stuffed it in a plastic bag and swore it off forever. It’s the mighty, mysterious mom force that led me back to it, I’m telling you.
How to Carbon Date Your Knitting
I don’t even remember when I started this thing, Kim Hargreaves’s Pearl from Rowan 32–one of the great Rowans.
Looking at this piece of wandering cables, I found myself wondering when I had started this thing. It is definitely preblogstoric, pre 2003. I do have a few clues that indicate just how clueless a knitter I was when I began this Pearl:
Freaked-Out Chart Scratching. Should I check off each row, or make a little dash mark, or just cross out the whole damn line?
Also: Size Chosen: Large. Suggests long-standing fear of being perceived as slutty when seen wearing a high-necked cabled cardigan.
Unfortunate Increases. What the heck kind of holes are those right in the middle of the back of this sweater? Shows complete lack of understanding that there might be some sort of increase other than a Make 1 By Picking Up The Strand Below.
Use of Cable Needle. Operating without a clue about how to make a cable without a cable needle. I don’t know how I got past Row 2 on this thing, using a cable needle for every single shift.
Stonehengelike Placement of Stitch Markers. What are these? And how did they get there? What is their mysterious message? Who did this?
I have to say, it’s kind of heartening to revisit a project that clearly was blowing my brains out, and to find that now I can crank two inches of it without clinging to the chart, without a cable needle, with a halfway decent increase that doesn’t leave a gaping hole in the middle of my knitting. It’s progress, I guess. This sweater, this woebegone UFO, is now fun. I am itching to get back to it, even as I write this.