Is Starshower the new Honey Cowl? Only time will tell (but it looks good).

Slow Knitting 101

Dear Kay,
First of all, Happy Passover! I hope you and the collected fambly folk who land at your house tonight have a splendid evening.
The Monday Weigh-In
Do you remember when you had a very small baby, say five months old? Remember when you’d hold out that tiny spoon of oatmeal, coaxing your darling to open his pink mouth and slurp it up? Remember how you’d open your mouth too, kind of bend your face into weird shapes while you watched that oatmeal find its way? “Yaaaaay! You took a bite!”
Well, that’s what’s going on with the two-handed Fair Isle lessons here. Weird faces. Sloooooow movements. “Yaaaaay! I made a stitch!”
keava3.jpg
Here are the past week’s eight rounds of oatmeal-eating progress. I know at this point you are asking, Why are you doing this? Don’t you have squares you should be making?
My answer is, I know. It’s kind of torturous to watch such agonized efforts. But it really is getting easier, thanks to all those clever Fair Islers who have made such excellent suggestions. And who knows, someday I might get a sweater out of it.
Love,
Ann

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22 Comments

22 Comments

  1. Ah,but isn’t it looking beautiful !

  2. Slowly, slowly towards beauty and perfection. Took the Colorado River ages to dig out Grand Canyon, just remember that. I’m waiting for my last two skeins of Madder Jamieson yarn, then I’ll join you in the *more KnitAlong. Probably at same pace….

  3. Hey, you’re making progress! You’re off the ribbing and into the actual pattern parts. This is a lot better than going backward. :) I have faith. You can do it!
    I finished my first-ever socks: http://www.bedford.net/teep/socks.jpg Actually this is my first finished-object that isn’t an afghanalong square or a dishcloth. And look! Shaping!

  4. Not JUST a sweater, Ann, but an amazing piece of fiber art. I might just have to switch from coveting your Birch to coveting your fabu fair isle!
    xo
    Sheila

  5. Oh but Ann it is so so worth the effort. It’s lovely and the colours are great. I particularly like that raspberry against the turquoise blue but honestly the whole thing is working together. I just LOVE colour !

  6. Ann, it is looking fabulous! Keep at it.

  7. Just checking in as I do periodically to see what’s happening on both sides of the Mason-Dixon line…as if anyone else cares what those Yanks are up to! I have never commented before on any of your posts, though I thoroughly enjoy them all, but today of all days I stand in awe at the effortless quality of the writing and the unique brand of humor, and covet desperately, though God may strike me down for doing so, the wit and wisdom of each and every post. It makes me wish that I could just try on your voices for one day and as I do when I hang out with gay friends of mine, wonder just as uselessly why oh why can’t I have some of THAT? Okay, green-eyed monster, go away. I really do appreciate my own talents and I really and truly do love my husband. Thanks for listening.
    FYI, I’m from Alabama, and I’m planning on sending in a square sometime in the near future.
    No need to drive across the border to pry it out of my grubby little hands, thanks.

  8. I just found, and am enjoying your site. I’d like to link it to my blog. I use buttons for the links… do you have one? Thanks, Jaonne

  9. Those colors just look better every time I see them. And hearing you talk about knitting with two hands gives me hope that someday I might be able to do it too!

  10. Ann it’s beautiful! No matter how slow, I’m sure you will speed up as you go on. It’s going to be fantastic.

  11. I can soooo relate to your struggle. Last week, after years of knitting exclusively for babies or toddlers, and sometimes finishing for one what I I had started for another years ago, I cast on 280 stitches for a cardi. For me. Sock yarn. 3mm needles. Working back and fronts at the same time. I kept it one color and stockinette, though. I’m not that foolish ! I sit back, looking proudly at my work, every two rows, and coax myself to do two more rows.
    Sometimes I go back to knitting squares.
    What I mean to say is that for the moment I’m working at your pace, judging by your pictures.
    Of course I know that you’ll eventually find your pace, and I’ll be left behind. But, who knows, I might eventually get a cardi out of it.
    Then I’ll make one for my husband.
    That’s what I like about knitting : like walking, if you keep doing that little step again and again, you can travel really far. It just takes obstinacy.
    Florence

  12. Thomas–I’m waiting patiently for your Jamieson’s to arrive soon, too. For anybody who’d like to see Thomas’s next project (The World’s Most Complicated Sweater), check out Thomas’s blog and scroll down to Feb. 8. Katherine Howard is the name of the sweater. I’ve never seen anything like it!
    Teep! Your socks are fantastic. I have fear of socks myself, so I’m all the more amazed at your just-dive-in attitude. What next? Katherine Howard?
    Sheila–I am definitely feeling the wierd obsessiveness that I experienced with that Birch shawl. I carry Keava around like Linus with his blanket, doing four stitches, then washing a dish. Note to self: must get life soon.
    And Rachel. Jinkies, thanks! As far as I’m concerned, you win all of Kay’s yarn and mine too. Tell me–are you north Alabama or south Alabama? We’re probably related.
    Joanne–At the bottom of the right column there’s a button that our webmistress Becky made. We have other cool buttons for the Afghanalong but we’re so lame that we haven’t posted them–YET. I’ll get on that.
    Theresa–I’m still worrying a bit about the colors I subsituted on Keava. I hope it’s going to look so flourescent that it won’t matter. Ah, stay tuned.
    And finally, Florence. Obstinancy is a gift, once inspiration runs out. I was just about to cave in on Keava, then thought: You know, this is not exactly brain surgery. It’s knitting. Surely I can figure this out, given enough coffee.

  13. I’m from the best part of Alabama (except for our very own little stretch of heaven…Gulf Shores) NORTH CENTRAL ALABAMA…AKA Birmin’ham…”I mean south, down in alabam, there’s a place where people go to dance the night away.” I’m from the side of Birmin’ham that gets mooned daily by Vulcan’s huge metal butt. Hey, maybe we ARE related! That would explain so much! My hero-worship of the one the only Becky, my fondness for Elfin, my painfully slow knitting of new techniques, your feeling that someone somewhere is mooning you with his huge metal butt (c’mon, you know you feel it)…oh. my. gah. THE. SAME.

  14. Ann,
    …and what a good eater you are. No mess. It looks great:))

  15. Ann — Look at you fly along! Rabbit at the greyhound track, fair isle pacesetter: you are making me think it is time to dust off Suzani (she was momentarily abandoned in a rash of finishing Other Knitted Things) and do one of her repeats for every one you get done on your Technicolor Keava. That will only get me about half way through, I’m guessing, but that should be enough because we all know that once you’re half way through, there’s no turning back.
    And by the bye, what other colors should your Keava be? It’s spring! Keava is wool! Those two forces could only combine the way they have.

  16. OK everybody, Rachel is referring to the World’s Largest Cast-Iron Statue, Vulcan, who lives in Birmingham, Alabama, as a monument to the city’s steel industry. If I recall my butt geography correctly, anybody living in the shadow of Vulcan’s posterior is living in . . . Homewood? I haven’t been a Birminghamian since I was ten, but I still have a tender spot for Ollie’s barbecue. Rachel, have you met Rene, the Birmingham blogstress at Lantana? Roll Tide, y’all! We’ll have to figure out the family tree: my Selma-born dad says everybody’s related in Alabama.
    Evelyn, dust off that Suzani. I neglected to start my training for the Music City Half Marathon/Walking Division, so maybe we could pace each other on our knitting instead. As for the colors, I chickened out on two of the original Keava colors–Candy (a bubble-gum pink) and Periwinkle (a soft, um, periwinkle purpleblue). I replaced them with pinky raspberry and grape, which are probably too dark but I’m too far gone on this thing to worry about it. It’s going down in history as the loudest sweater I ever made.

  17. Rachel, I don’t knit, but I do read my sis’s blog for entertainment. I would love to play the Alabama game and see how we are related (I’m risking that people north of the Mason-Dixon are confirming inbreeding ideas of southerners at this point). I’ll e-mail you soon.
    Ann, that colorful textile you are whipping up is amazing! I do want you to teach me how to knit this summer; however, it will be something with one solid color. I’m afraid anything more would trigger a migraine. If you need some Amitriptyline I’ve got plenty (800mg of Ibuprofen works wonders too).
    Love ya,
    Buffy

  18. Sissy–I thought Amitriptyline was that stuff you use to refinish your dresser. Careful, honey!
    Teach you to knit? Why, I thought you’d never ask. I shall figure out the perfect Buffy Starter project by the time your lessons begin.
    And as for Cousin Rachel, well let’s figure that out asap.
    Love, Sissy

  19. Ann,
    that *more is looking rather wonderful & I like your colour substitutions – bubble gum pink isn’t necessarily easy on the eye…
    ‘Tis my birthday today & I just had to share that my family have been v.v. kind in providing me with cash to go yarn shopping! – yeay!!!!! – I might just manage to buy enough Summer Tweed for Shaded Diamonds – quite when I’m going to knit a Kaffe coat is another matter, but it was my must-have from the latest Rowan mag. I have yet to finish Rogue & the bump’s blankie (need to get those done first before I start Shaded Diamonds), but a baby does sleep sometimes… going to have to try & get sussed with breastfeeding & knitting at the same time perhaps… then again, maybe that’s not such a great idea!
    Jo
    xxx

  20. Happy birthday, Jo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just think: next year, you’ll have a sweet little face beaming up at you, gurgling “happy birthday” in that one-year-old way.
    What a wonderful present you’re going to get in a few weeks. I’ve been thinking about you and Bump.
    Love & XOXOX

  21. Gorgeous! It’s making me want to do something fair isle!

  22. Happy birthday Jo !
    Breast feeding & knitting don’t go.I tried.Read a lot though !