Aw look! One pattern, 364 versions of the MDK New Ancestral Christmas Stocking.

If There’s a Cure For This

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Dear Ann,
It’s a rainy Monday, and I’ve got a ferocious case of finishitis. Unlike startitis, which is as common as dirt, finishitis is quite rare. Some people say there’s no such thing, that finishitis is a legend made up to scare yarn manufacturers. Other people say that in all reported cases of finishitis, the knitter was also in the last hours of pregnancy and was doing other weird stuff like rearranging all the furniture and disinfecting the Tupperware. (Because she was “NOT going to bring a newborn home to this hellhole!”)
How does a person contract finishitis? Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control believe that the virus is transmitted from stash to stash. I’ll admit, with all the book-knitting, my stash has been on the prowl. Fiber snobs would blame it on my XXL collection of dishcloth cotton–who knows where it’s been? But I don’t want to play the blame game. As diseases go, finishitis is a pretty good deal. Major symptoms: euphoria, self-righteousness, and buying buttons.
Anyway, I’m pretty sure I’ve got it. (I’m NOT going to bring new yarn home to this hellhole.) I’ve been dragging out old projects and weaving in ends like it’s nothing.
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Remember the Abe Blankie?
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The Abe Blankie was abandoned after its first border was deemed to be rolling. This was Not Acceptable, but until now I lacked the gumption to remove the old border and add a wider one. Snip-snap, it’s done. (It’s funny that with a blanket this wonky-by-design, a little thing like a rolling edge could be Not Acceptable, but it was.)
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Remember Buncha Squares, my tribute to Denyse Schmidt’s tribute to the Gee’s Bend quilts? Buncha was abandoned when I was dissatisfied with all available methods of joining the squares together. Mattress stitch didn’t look good with the garter squares, and the 3-needle bindoff, while I love it, was adding a distracting element and also–it’s awfully picky-uppy to join small squares this way. Lots and lots of ends to weave in and they never look just right.
Solution: bury project in plastic bag for one solid year. During this year, learn how Cara joined her green garter stitch log cabin squares together. It’s so easy, and I already knew how to do it: whip stitch. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that for joining garter stitch squares together, whip stitch is THE way to go. This blanket came together in one evening once I decided to do it this way, even with stopping to knit additional strips to equalize the sizes of the squares. It’s not done yet, because I had 2 leftover squares and decided to knit 2 more so I could have a 16-square blanket, and add a little Yoshiko Jinzenji mojo to this blanket. (Startitis is a well-known complication of finishitis.)
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In other news–and I think this is consistent with a diagnosis of finishitis–I am knitting hubby’s Cornish Knit Frock a whole new way: Wendy style. Meaning that I am going to keep knitting it, without any unexplained disappearances in plastic bags, until it is done. Crazy!
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Think I’m kidding? This is Sleeve One. Sleeve One measured 30 inches before washing. It measures 25 inches after washing, which is what it needs to measure, even factoring in the substantial drop shoulder in the design of this pullover. (I cannot believe that I married a man whose sleeves are garments in their own right, but what’s done is done. It’s either knit him a sweater, or not.)
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Frock Sleeve 2 is already up to the Fun Part. I really love this pattern (from Jane and Patrick Gottelier’s forthcoming book,Indigo Knits). Just the right amount of knittertainment, but easy enough to carry it around without the pattern.
As you can see, I’m not nearly as productive as I’d be if your Buffy were in charge up here, but I’m doing what I can. (I have to give snaps to you two for taking the kids to the Jack Daniels factory. Way to put the ‘belt’ in Bible Belt!)
Love, Kay

55 Comments

55 Comments

  1. Yer knocking me out.
    Two blankets?
    And such… breathtaking ones at that.
    It gives me hope.
    Ann has her slog-a-long, you have started the bury-it-and-finish-later-along. Which is great, because I definitely have some of thems hiding ’round here.

  2. I really admire your illness…wish I could catch it. My neighbors were just asking about the things I have knit for them but have yet to stitch together. They’ve heard of my illness…alas, not yours.:)
    You go girl! Your work is beautiful.

  3. Good on ya Kay!! There’s hope for the rest of us, and with a side effect like euphoria, maybe you’ll be Patient Zero in a veritable Finishitis Epidemic.

  4. finish that blanket
    weave in ends of that warshrag
    to start is to end
    here is a really really bad haiku from hot muggy nagasaki. today I am going to dig out all my WIPs and finish them and mail them out…..
    there are at least 3

  5. Congrats on contracting finishitis. My latest concoction to avoid finishitis is to put a ton of projects growing (into a mountain on my chair) in one of those big plastic containers with a lid. Voila! Off the chair. I absolutely love the Abe Blanket now. The dark blue border is the perfect answer and gives it just a bit of “umph”.

  6. Oh geez those blankets are beautiful.

  7. The blankets are both awesome (not to malign the sweater), I recently picked up moderne as a break from my Barbara Walker afghan, but can’t say as I’ve finished either….

  8. You are on a ROLL!! Phew. I’m breaking a sweat here just reading about it.

  9. Gorgeous blankets, Kay. Wow! I hope to catch that bug soon.
    Oh, and the thing about women in the last hours of pregnancy? Remember my friend Sarah we had pizza with? *This* is my new favorite FO picture of all time:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/cafemama/840796944/

  10. …(I’m back! Hit *post* before I was finished.)
    The frock is impressive but you know I’m partial to projects that start with a bunch of squares.

  11. My husband has gorilla arms, too.

  12. How great is it to have those beautiful works of art and toil, now out from their hiding places, finished and into your eyes view. SO glad you caught the “bug” and we all hope it is highly contagious!
    LOVE,LOVE,LOVE that sweater…Keep a knit’in.

  13. I was already to start a baby blanket. Found the pattern, but waiting on the sex of the baby. Well, thank you very much! Now I want a Schmidt blanket too! How dare you?

  14. Kay, I love Buncha Squares! I’m currently working on the log cabin from your book and really like how it’s turning out…now I want to make a bunch of little log cabins! I guess I still have more startitis and not much finishitis in me right now…but I love it when finishitis hits. It tends to come out of the blue for me…and when it does, I know to just go with it, cuz it may not be back for months! Technical question, when you whip stitch the blocks together, I am assuming you use yarn, not thread…right?
    Thanks!
    Deb in Nebraska

  15. Kay, I love Buncha Squares! I’m currently working on the log cabin from your book and really like how it’s turning out…now I want to make a bunch of little log cabins! I guess I still have more startitis and not much finishitis in me right now…but I love it when finishitis hits. It tends to come out of the blue for me…and when it does, I know to just go with it, cuz it may not be back for months! Technical question, when you whip stitch the blocks together, I am assuming you use yarn, not thread…right?
    Thanks!
    Deb in Nebraska

  16. Thanks for the finishitis mojo! I really needed some to complete a few things so I can Move On.

  17. Wherever you got it, I want it. I once tried to give myself finishitis, but it didn’t quite stick as long as I wanted. Maybe if I had the real variety…

  18. Swooning over “Buncha Squares”. I have been contemplating a quilt somewhat like that for several months. Hmmm, maybe I need to move that idea to knitting… that has been happening a lot lately to the quilting end of things. Nope. No finishitis in sight here just now.

  19. Kay, you’re unbelievable!! Two blankets and they’re both AWESOME!! If you can keep it up, I’ll be completely in awe of you.

  20. So inspiring and so beautiful! Can I catch some of that disease too? Just for long enough to finish my Miter blanket and my Moderne blanket. Why yes, I was foolish enough to cast on both of them!

  21. I love the knitted blankets!

  22. A denim sleeve, finished! Gosh you have done well there. 25″ is long. And, well, what can I say about the other two? Stunning, as ever. You could always come and finish a few things off here, you know!

  23. You are knitting the gansey Wendy style? Wow, you are almost as nutty as I am.
    But seeing it in progress makes me want a denim gansey. It’s fabulous!

  24. hi to you all – well done – they all look super! my problem at the moment is what to take on holiday whwn i KNOW that I will knit not much at all – or crochet !!! – but i want to take something!! – maybe the Argosy scarf – my big ball of french knitting and the odd balls of cheapo acrylic and the pattern for a mitred square!!! when the little rucksac is full……!!

  25. Wow, everything looks wonderful. It’s amazing what letting something sit will do for a project.

  26. I was creating a blog post in my head on startitis vs. finishitis and here you are finishing away. Goregous blankets.

  27. It’s all clear now why you were offering to weave in miter ends for me.
    And I can’t tell you how absolutely ecstatic I am that I could help YOU with a blanket. Thank you so much! Buncha Squares has me wanting to log cabin again. Oh why oh why can’t I catch Finishitis?!?

  28. The view out your window in the first picture is nice – do you live on the top floor of your building? Wow. Also, isn’t Jack Daniels in a dry county? My parents took us there – twice! – when we were kids.
    Glad you guys are back. Can’t wait for the book!!

  29. I like your hubby’s frock! The blankies are great too, even in this heat. Well done Kay!

  30. Lovely, lovely all. You’ve inspired me to go up to my studio now (before the inspiration wears off of course) and finish the sweater that is blocked but still in pieces. Thank you for that because the guilt has been huge.
    Love the Jack Daniels tour and even had a nice lunch with them after the tour.
    I hope your finishing trend continues for awhile, what a wonderful feeling!
    Buffy can come to my house and whip me and my house into shape anytime. We both need it.

  31. You *go,* Girl!

  32. Wow, wow, and triple WOW! That was some serious “knittertainment” in that there post.

  33. “knittertainment, but easy enough to *carry it around without the pattern*” you say. {sob} That’ll be the day….although even reading about a current case of Finishitis is inspiring! (Then I looks around and I adds “almost”.) Love those afghans though. I do believe I’ve hit that point of Summer Season when my thoughts begin to turn to Late Summer and Early Fall, the most delicious part of the year. I knit all summer (anyone need a cotton dishcloth?) but I **KNIT** in the winter. Thanks for the inspiration!

  34. Oooooh, finishitis… I could use some of that myself. Let’s see… toddler cardigan, scarf for brother, Sideways Spencer sweater, Nothin’ But a Tee… yikes!

  35. Is finishitis contagious? I hope? Please???

  36. I know it is wrong to wish an illness on yourself, but I so desperately need a case of finishitis. Its more common cousin (startitis) has gripped me in a very bad way lately. I need serious help. Life is getting very bad here chez Stashbasket – so much cast on, so little cast off. I am sinking under the pressure of it all, I can see no way out from this hole I’m in. Please tell me where to send my stash so it too can catch a strong dose of finishitis. And I mean a very strong dose.

  37. Buncha Squares is beautiful. It’s such a serene blanket, I’m sure it didn’t mind waiting for the finishing-up.
    I need to catch some of this finishitis, too. Too bad it’s such a rare bug and can’t just be picked up over the internet like all those nasty computer viruses.

  38. since you only said it was a rainy Monday – I KNOW you weren’t stuck trying to get in to Battery Park (Coast Guard office) in it — it was not a pleasant trip by any means 3 hours in and 4 back to Southampton ….

  39. Holy Crap! Could you send this strange here-two-four (Canadian spellings, gotta love them ;) unknown virus up this way? I have a few buried things that could do with some finishing.
    Yours look great, please send skillz along with the virus.

  40. Oh, wow! I just love Buncha. Please tell me that is made from our ever favorite kitchen cotton? Perfect answer for all the left overs. And wonderful for my son who is not fond of wool (he’s too warm blooded).

  41. I think finishitis is going around. It’s hit here at my house this week. The problem is, it’s a short lived infectious process. Give it day-two at most- and you’ll find yourself trolling through your LYS or stash…I wish the ‘flu worked that way.

  42. I may have a touch of that virus. Although my results are not nearly as stupendous as yours… I do so covet that cream delight you have concocted. I actually started a project from stash! It appears I have enough and won’t have to go and purchase more (oooh, hope I didn’t just jinx myself!)
    I don’t do sweaters for my hubby…. 41 inch sleeve… say no more!

  43. Wow, you got it bad and you got it good! There’s gonna be a whole lotta warmin’ goin’ on!

  44. OMG! Those blankets are gorgeous! I’ve got three squares done for my use-up-the-leftovers blanket, but it’s stalled due to too many WIPs. Thanks for showing us the sweater too. Lucky guy you got there!

  45. I’m afraid that there may not be a cure… I’ve been knitting “Wendy’s” way for about a year now. The closest I found to a cure was yarn shopping. Take a lot of cash with you and buy and dream and buy and dream…

  46. I came down with a serious case of finishitis *last* summer, but they must have put something in the water since then ’cause the startitis came out of remission and is a full-blown case *this* summer. :/

  47. I love your blankets! What yarn did you use for each?

  48. Midsummer Caption contest entry:
    “I wish that photographer would hurry up!!!
    It’s at least 100 degrees in here and these sweaters itch!!!!”

  49. When I read “the knitter was also in the last hours of pregnancy and was doing other weird stuff like rearranging all the furniture and disinfecting the Tupperware. (Because she was “NOT going to bring a newborn home to this hellhole!”) ” I totally it lost it and cracked up. Then I thought about it today at work and started laughing again. Now tonight it’s STILL funny.
    Thanks!

  50. Buncha Squares is lovely! And as a beginning knitter, it doesn’t look terribly daunting. Did you by any chance document the pattern, and would you be willing to share? Thanks for the beautiful photos and entertaining blog.

  51. please tell me where to find pattern, etc for Buncha Squares- I LOVE it! Just the thing for blankets for grandkids :>

  52. please tell me where to find pattern, etc for Buncha Squares- I LOVE it! Just the thing for blankets for grandkids :>

  53. please tell me where to find pattern, etc for Buncha Squares- I LOVE it! Just the thing for blankets for grandkids :>

  54. PLEASEtell me where to find pattern, etc for Buncha Squares- I LOVE it! Just the thing for blankets for grandkids :>

  55. …ops- didn’t mean to post so many times- sorry- it acted like it hadn’t posted!