My Best Class Ever post got very jumbled in the publishing. Darn Weebly! Just start reading at the rainbow needle then jump back up to the beginning when you get to the end. I'm not techy enough to know how to fix it.
The was also a mistake project. I've written about this before. This was to be a jacket for Kathy but when it was finished, it fit like a sweater not like a jacket which wouldn't work at all in Atlanta. With this modular construction, I couldn't measure as I went to see if measurements were accurate. So, I frogged it out and started over with larger needles. Luckily, I loved the pattern.
I think the reason I know how to fix mistakes (and do a pretty fine job if I do say so myself) is I've made many and figured out on my own how to fix or live with the mistake. Enough about mistakes, let get on to fixing.
Ok, you've just discovered a mistake several rows or inches back, now what do you do?
There are 3 things to consider when determining your repair strategy:
*The properties of the knitter. Are you a beginner or experienced? Are you brave or timid? Does confusion and chaos bring you to tears?
*Properties of the yarn. The plainer the yarn, the easier it is to fix a mistake. The stickier the yarn, the easier it is to fix a mistake. The slipperier the yarn, the harder to fix the mistake. The fineer the yarn, the harder it is to fix the mistake.
* Properties of the pattern. The simpler the pattern the easier to fix the mistake. The more complex, the harder.
There are 4 strategies to use:
*Tinking or knitting backwards. This is the safest but slowest method. The perfect strategy for beginners, slippery yarn or complex pattern.
*Laddering or unraveling the stitch above the mistake to fix then ladder up using a crochet hook.
*Frogging or ripping out the yarn until you get to the mistake. This works better for heavier or stickier yarn. Not at all good for complex patterns or slippery yarn.
* Do nothing and live with the mistake.
You just need to match the appropriate strategy with the 3 properties.
In a nutshell, that was Preventing and Fixing Mistakes with two sessions dedicated to practicing techniques. One women said, "It's not enough to be a good knitter, you need to be a good fixer." Then she said this was the most important class she's ever taken! WOW! The response was so positive, Linda and I will offer it again after the first of the year.
Hopefully, the workers will leave today from fixing our flood. Last Monday when they started they unhooked our main cable box and we lost phone, cable and internet until Saturday when Comcast came and made it all right. Needless to say it has been stressful. Finally, I have the ability to get on line and interact with my beloved Knitting: A Love Story. We will be leaving tomorrow for Atlanta and Thanksgiving with Kathy then on to the Coastal Condo. We'll leave our old Camry and fly home. Then there will be a car for when Jan and her friends fly to Sunset Beach. Even though this has been a stressful year, I have so many things for which to be thankful. Through this tough year, knitting, my knitting buddies and Knitting: A Love Story have been my ports in the storm. My best to all of you for the holiday season. I will be back the first week in December.
Knitting is magic there is no doubt about it. There is just something about two sticks and a string that send my heart into palpitations. The complex beauty of amazing fiber dancing to the tango of knit and purl just makes me sigh. There is nothing like casting off a project and standing back and admiring its perfection. But it takes more than skilled knitting to come away with a perfect project. It takes the ability to recognize and fix mistakes as you go along. That's why Linda Schwam and I created a class called Preventing and Fixing Mistakes.
As you know Preventing and Fixing Mistakes was introduced at 2018 Ann's By Design Yarn Tasting and continued through two practice sessions. Yes, I did take pictures at the second practice sessions but I'm having a little trouble getting the pictures from my iPad to my MacBook. Technology! But that's another story. I will entertain you with photos that are blasts from the past.
Yarn is expensive and time is precious. Knitting is fun and relaxing. Repairing is tedious and scary but worth the effort. Outcomes for Preventing and Fixing Knitting Mistakes were: During our time together you will learn; 1) The techniques to use to help you prevent mistakes, 2) How to read your knitting so you will understand your mistakes and 3) How to fix your mistakes.
(I think I should intervene for a moment. In my work life, I did 100's of workshops for teachers, business leaders, school administrators and organizations. I ALWAYS started planning my workshops by asking the question "When this is over, what do you want participants to know or be able to do." Even now when I plan a knitting class or start a knitting project, I ask myself that question.)
The first session at Yarn Tasting presented preventing mistakes.
*Do you have the right yarn and right pattern? Only one can be the star. If you have a spectacular pattern, you need plainer yarn. If you have spectacular yarn, you need a plainer pattern. Sometimes fancy patterns and fancy yarns fight each other not make the most of either.
*Understand the pattern before you start. Practice new stitches or techniques before you start the project that way by the time you get to your garment, you are less likely to make pattern mistakes.
*Swatch! Swatch! Swatch! I know you think it's boring but it is so important to not only know you have the right gage but to know you like the looks the fabric you are creating. Does it look too loose or too tight? Now is the time to fix that not when you are half finished and decide you do not like the looks of your fabric.
*Use stitch markers to count stitches, to put between pattern changes, to mark the right side of your garment, to mark an increase or a decrease. It really makes seeing what you have done much easier. One of our students said she thought only beginners had to use stitch markers and she was trying to look like an experienced knitter so she wouldn't use them.
*Look at your fabric regularly. Can you see a mistake? Better to take some time and see the mistake early than to knit 6 inches then see it.
*Count Stitches regularly.
*Measure your fabric regularly. This will keep you from completing your knitting, sewing it together only to find it is too small or too big.
*NEVER! NEVER! NEVER! stop in the middle of a row.
Let's take a break and see a picture.
This was one of my biggest mistakes. I didn't measure as I went. My gage was right when I swatched but when I finished this cute little tunic became an ankle length dress. See, I don't always do as I say! I know, sometimes you are just so into knitting, you forget to measure or count stitches or any of those techniques to keep mistakes at bay. I gave this to my sister without even knowing it had become a prom dress.
And this? Of course you do! This was my Accidental Knit-A-Long. It was so much fun. Having amazingly beautiful yarn, a pattern but not having a clue what it was going to look like was a hoot. I must admit I've never done a Knit-A-Long before. There was just something about only getting a little of the pattern at a time that just didn't light my fire. What if I wanted to knit faster? What if I wanted to go slower? (I must admit that I get a little freaky when I think I'm behind.) I really am quite stubborn about setting my own time frame. This was perfect! The excitement of a mystery but me being in charge. Ouch!!!!!! That sounded pretty bossy. Well, whatever. You get the idea. Now I must admit I am excited about unveiling this Accidental Knit-A-Long.
Isn't it beautiful!?!?!?! I love it and may already know who it is going to live with for Christmas. It was beautiful when I finished knitting but it was AMAZING when it was steamed. The name of the pattern is Lines and Lattice Lace and can be purchased on Ravelry.
These are the lines.
And this is the lattice lace. Everything I knit looks better when Lydia models it, so let's let Lydia do her stuff.
See what I mean!?!? Lydia just adds pizzaz to my knitting. Between Madonna (my steamer) and Lydia, my girls just make me look good.
This was an exciting project. I loved it! I loved it so much, I suggested that Ann's By Design kit up some mystery projects. I think we're going to do it. Isn't that exciting.
This blog is dedicated to Mary Helen Growt my first knitting teacher and the woman who changed my life. The mission of Knitting: A Love Story is to preserve, share and promote the love of knitting.