Let the past sleep, but let it sleep in the sweet embrace of Christ, and let us go on into the invincible future with Him. (Oswalt Chambers)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Chat Back for February 19

Responding to comments left since the last time I did Chat Back.

Judy S. asked . . .
You have a gansey template? Could you explain?
At six stitches/inch I cast on 240 stitches and start knitting around, picking stitch patterns as I go. Usually I have a few in mind that I want to use. When I get to a few inches below the arm split, I work in the lower half of the gusset. Then I knit the top back and tops front and three- needles bind off the shoulders. Pick up stitches for the sleeve and upper half of the gusset, knit the sleeves, and it's done. No sewing. Not a stitch.

For everything you wanted to know about gansey knitting, including everything you need to design your own, Knitting Ganseys by Beth Brown-Reinsel is an excellent source.

It's easy to understand with the entire gansey process presented in a clear, logical tutorial which includes knitting a very cute doll or teddybear sized gansey sweater for demonstration. At the back of the book are six gansey patterns, three adult and three children. I knit the kid size ganseys over and over again for charity knitting and knit one of the adult sized ganseys for myself. A few pictures of sweaters I knit from this book are here, here, and here.

Shirley asked . . .
Have you looked at Alice Starmore's Inishmore? I like mine so much that I want to knit another - in black.
Oh yes. I remember your beautiful blue Inishmore. (See Shirley's Inishmore here.)

You're a braver knitter than I am to consider knitting all that detail in black.

It is a gorgeous pattern. Alice Starmore is a yarn artist for sure.

Marie commented . . .
Before there was Second Sock Syndrome, I believe there was Second Sleeve Syndrome. As a new knitter many years ago, I was always deflated by how flippin' long sleeves took just when I thought a sweater was on the homestretch. Now I know better and have adjusted my mindset to think that sleeves are almost as much work as a front and a back...and have taken up obsessive sock knitting as my solution.
This made me laugh so hard I even went back and read it on several different days.

My red gansey sleeves are done and I'm in the process of adjusting my mindset to start the next set of sleeves on another waiting sweater body. But first I need to obsessively knit a pair of socks.

Judy S. asked . . .
I love those oak trees. Just when everyone thinks they have all the leaves raked, "Bam! They let go." Ours are black oaks; what are yours?
In Michigan we have White Oak, Swamp White Oak, Pin Oak, Northern Red Oak, Bur Oak, and Black Oak. I admit to lumping them all together in my mind and not being able to tell the difference.

I do know that we live surrounded by oak woods, and there are at least three different kinds: leaf dropping in autumn, leaf dropping in late winter, and leaf dropping in spring. The leaf dropping in spring oaks are still hanging onto their leaves even in the 40 MPH winds we had yesterday.

Shirley asked . . .
Was there something about the (Pointelle Sock pattern which you didn't enjoy? Somehow I got that impression.
You are very perceptive.

The start of the heel is over a yarnover stitch with yarnovers that continue on to the instep.

Even though the heel flap is my least favorite part of a sock to knit, I frogged it along with the turned heel and the picked up gusset stitches several times in an attempt to figure out how to make the the yarnover transition look perfect.

After the third attempt, I put the socks on time out for a week and even considered frogging them. Eventually I picked them up, told myself to accept a bit of imperfection, and finished the pair. Now that they're done I don't even notice that very small sloppy spot.

Judy S. asked . . .
It always amazes me to see bulbs poking up through leaves, but then tree roots can lift concrete, can't they?
Yes they sure can. They're also good at disrupting septic systems.

With the snow melted it was time to check out the unidentified burrow in the back field. Yikes! The entrance hole is enlarged and there are three "back" holes, north, south, and west.

Even more unsettling, there are clumps of rabbit fur in the lower left of the picture. It's not a vegetarian living there. It's probably a fox family.

Under dogless circumstances I would be thrilled to have a fox family, but this is a major dog attraction only a few feet off our dog walking trail.

I can't take the little dogs that way anymore. The hole is bigger than they are. And I worry about old dog Glory getting into a hassle with anything, although I'm guessing a fox would give her less trouble than a woodchuck.


Susan said...

Yikes is right! I would keep the dogs well away from those holes.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the nice comments and link to my Inishmore. I looked at all the charts again and decided to wait before knitting it with black yarn. Maybe next Winter.

You have inspired me to look at my Gansey book again. Yours is gorgeous! Which cotton yarn would you recommend? I have never used cotton but do like the Swish DK. I am working on "Metro" but may try a gansey pullover next.

Hope you discover what's in the hole! I would stay away too - especially with the dogs.