Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Exorcising the Demon

It's been a little while since I've shown you photos of my current projects in progress, so today I'll provide you with an update on all three.

The first project I photographed for this post was the salmon pink summer sweater that I'm making with the Anny Blatt viscose/cotton blend, mixed together with a variegated bamboo yarn. As those of you who visit here regularly know from my prior post, this yarn has tormented me for some time now and I'm less than thrilled with the project that I finally settled on. When my husband saw me photographing the sweater, he was perplexed. He asked why I would want to "show off" the project when he had heard me repeatedly call it ugly names and express my general distaste for it.

Of course, the answer is simple. I am not posting this project - nor any other for that matter - to "show it off." I have no illusions about my knitting skills. A quick perusal of just a small sampling of knitting blogs would quickly show that I am outshined at every turn. No, no. It's not about a prideful display of my grand achievements in knitting. I share these photos in the same way that I would share a project in progress with the Friday Knitting Cupcakes at my favorite LYS. We are knitters, after all. We share the good, the bad and the ugly. If I only posted the projects that I felt worthy of "showing off" you likely wouldn't hear from me often!

With that said, here is the completed front of the summer top. The color is a bit off, as I'm afraid it is in all of my photos today. I waited too late in the day to capture the best light for photographs, but you'll get the idea.

It will take some blocking to get it to lay flat and, of course, it still looks rather odd without a neck or finished armhole/sleeve caps.

Overall, I really do rather despise this project. I won't go into the details of why yet again, but I will share with you the answer I gave to my husband's next question, which may very well be weighing on your mind as well. That is, if I don't like this project, why continue with it? The answer again is simple: To exorcise the demon!

This yarn was torturing me. It refused to speak to me about its destiny. Every time I searched for a needle or other knitting-related item, this yarn popped out of its resting place and plunked itself right down in front of me. It spontaneously broke free from its Ziploc bag and spilled out onto the floor. It taunted me. It haunted me. I had no choice. I had to exorcise the demon and lay it to rest once and for all. Once the Demon Sweater is complete, I will be able to move on to something fresh and new, unfettered by the curse of the salmon pink demon yarn.

The next project on the sticks is much more pleasing to the eye, but no more enjoyable for me. It is the neverending spiral rib socks in my FF Superwash Merino Wool Sock Yarn in the Royalty colorway. The socks themselves look OK and I have no real complaints about them, but for some reason, I can't seem to finish them. I'm getting closer now though, at long last! This is sock number two, with the heel completed and the home stretch in sight.

I don't think I've ever taken so long to knit a pair of socks. Whewsh!

Finally, the last project I have in progress is the ripple stitch afghan that I started a couple of months ago and plan to knit slowly throughout the summer. This project seemed a bit dull when I began, but it is now my knitting sanctuary. It lacks the happy little milestones that make knitting such fun (Time to start shaping the armhole! Or ... Finished turning the heel! ... etc), but it most definitely has its perks.

I'm using my FF Sportweight Superwash Merino and I must say that I really do like knitting with this yarn, particularly when weighed against the demon yarn. The demon yarn is bumpy and doesn't glide smoothly on the needles. The bamboo yarn also tends to split, which just adds to the general roughness of the knitting experience. To switch over to the ripple stitch afghan and feel the glorious rhythm of yarn gliding effortlessly from needle to needle really is a much-needed respite. Even with the 20-row repeat of this particular ripple stitch requiring a fair amount of attention, and even with the lacey detail complete with lots of YO's, K2TOG, PSSO and such, this project gives me a relaxed and comfortable knitting break from the recalcitrant demon yarn.

I try to knit at least one stripe of color each day. It's difficult to tell from the photo, but it's probably about three feet long now.

If I keep up with this pace, I should comfortably finish this small afghan/throw by the end of the summer as planned.

That's all I have to show you today. Wish me luck in finishing up the spiral socks soon and making some more progress on exorcising the demon. Then and only then will I give myself permission to begin something new. Something new. Sigh. Ah yes. Something new!


~Tonia~ said...

Sorry to hear that you are still having problems with the sweater. Hopefully it will decide to go faster and it will be over soon.

Your sock pregress sounds like mine lately. I don't know if it is the summer, the lure of the wheel or what, but my knitting has seemed to slow a lot. Hope they go quicker for you.

The ripple throw looks great! It is so nice to have something to comfort you when other things aren't working as expected.

Have a happy 4th!!

Micki said...

I completely understand about not wanting to let the yarn win. Your perseverance is admirable! And despite your negative feelings toward the top, it is actually looking quite nice. :)

Jersey Shore Deb said...

Your comments about the "demon" sweater resonate so much with me! I am about to post about a very similar experience I just finished with my BonBon tank. But it's finished, I'll wear it, and that's that! Check my blog for the details:


Lynne E. said...

Your ripple afghan always makes me smile. As Mr. Grant once said about Mary, "[It's] perky!"

DragonsChest said...

Well hmmm... your previous pic of the demon sweater left me cold, as to the color combos. But this pic, why, it just jumps off the screen and says: Like Me! And I do. I like the colors now, maybe I just had to see them in a more finished state. Or else, the Demon Sweater has possessed me, and soon my head will be spinning around.

It could happen. ;)

Fiberjoy said...

"It lacks the happy little milestones that make knitting such fun" What a charming sentence that rings so true.

Dogged perseverance will win out yet. Wouldn't it be funny if you end up liking it once it's finished and tried on.

DragonsChest said...

Yay! I just ordered your laceweight merino in the Spring Breeze colorway so that I can participate in this year's Mystery Stole 3 KAL. *smiles*

KnittingHawkeye said...

The socks are done. =) There are pics up on my blog of both of them in natural light. I hope you like them. =) The colour is brilliant with the pattern. Thanks again for everything!