Go With Your Instincts

I was talking to a friend last night about how knitting is the one area of my life where I’m quite decisive and don’t worry about consequences.  I will cast on, rip out, cut the yarn, quit when it’s too hard or I’m bored, start something entirely new because it’s pretty and I’m sad or whatever, and overall not really even care. I go entirely on my instinct for what I want to be doing at the moment.

So anyway I had a little yarn money to burn last month, about the same time I had an urge to knit Wrought Iron. Eat Sleep Knit was the only store with the Tosh Merino Light colors I wanted (Candlewick and Tern) in stock, and while I was there I decided I certainly also needed a skein of Violet Beauregard and Yoko. I had a vague notion of a shawl with those two as the main colors and any leftovers from the sweater making nice little accents.


I was well into another sweater when this arrived, but I still had the yarn wound and Wrought Iron cast on by dinner.

(cast on)

I wanted to alternate skeins of Candlewick just to be safe, so for a while knitting the front of this sweater involved wrangling 5 balls of yarn — 2 of Candlewick to alternate for each side of the front and 1 of Tern for the center panel.


It was a huge pain but I wanted this sweater to be as pretty as possible.

Now, another thing about the way I approach knitting is that if a pattern has tricky things in it I need to just go line by line and trust the text. I have a hard time seeing how a thing will knit up if I’m just reading the instructions. I could tell that Wrought Iron had an unusual construction so I just focused in on each step of the instructions and tried not to get ahead of myself.

Which is how I ended up with 6 extra cm of sweater front involving 5 balls of yarn, lace and intarsia before I realized I should have stopped knitting 6 cm ago.

(rip out)

It took me 4 hours to rip that back to where it should have been.

It took the rest of the afternoon to get the provisional cast-ons picked out, the shoulder stitches picked up properly, and the back neck cast on.

It took me a couple more hours to completely fuck up the short-row shaping, rip back to the provisional cast-ons, and redo the short-row shaping properly.

I spent the next morning happily (I mean, not so happily, really, I was already getting pretty fed up with this nonsense) knitting the back to the same (that is, 6 cm shorter than I thought) length as the front, and then FINALLY it was time to join everything up. I was feeling a lot less love for this sweater at this point, but I was ready to put that behind me and get to the pretty part.

Which is when I realized that when I ripped out the back and started it over, I had cast on the center back stitches between the outside edges of the shoulders. So, I had a Möbius yoke, basically, and also I had now had quite enough, thank you.

(cut the yarn, quit when it’s too hard)

And that’s the story of how I’m knitting the 4-color San Drea Shawl in Candlewick, Tern, Violet Beauregard, and Yoko.

(start something entirely new because it’s pretty and I’m sad or whatever)


The end.

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