Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Irish Moss Collar

All I've got left to finish on this sweater, besides a week's worth of weaving in ends, is 16 rows on the collar. I got it started tonight. I had to stop -- it's 70 degrees outside and it's just too hot to hold this wad-o-wool on my lap. Even in shorts! A front is supposed to come through and bring us close to freezing tonight. It should be easier to work on tomorrow night.

One of the things I really like about this collar, as opposed to the other two I've knitted in my life, is that the bulk of it is built on "live" stitches that were resting on holders. I only had to pick up and knit about 20 stitches. I'm really not all that confident in my ability to "pick up and knit." I always seem to leave holes or get things uneven. Things look pretty good this time around. If I can just keep these stitches from jumping off the ends of the DPNs. I may have to use that rubber band trick I've heard about.

I'm going to take a break and watch some episodes of "Knitty Gritty" that I've got recorded. I need to get on that show. Anyone up for a trip to L.A.?


  1. Hi Steven!

    Janelle shared your blog with me. I just did my first "picking up stiches" project and I redid that part THREE times. Hated it the first two. But then I consulted our local queen of knitting's library (aka Janelle), guided by her wisdom herself, and found some VERY helpful reads in "Knitting in Plain English" and "The Knitting Stitch: The Purl Stitch." Now I'm pretty darn proud of how it looks (even though the hidden edge is a bit stretched out from all the "redoing!").

    And I loved the post about your niece's Katy!

    Take care,

  2. Hi Steven:

    I sympathize with the pickup up stitches issue. I have a recommendation that covers two knitting needs in one - if you need a mindless project - the kind that you do while watching a foreign movie with subtitles (i.e. you don't have to look down constantly) and want to practice picking up stitches - check out the log cabin blanket in "Mason Dixon Knitting." ( It is very easy, fun, and you have to pick up lots of stitches - but in a good way.

    Good luck with the collar.


  3. If you're worried about the stitches sliding off the dpns, you could put them on circular needles, too (assuming you have the right size). Actually, I read recently that you really only need the correct size needle in your right hand (since that's the needle that the yarn gets wrapped around) - the needle size doesn't matter on the left. So you could put the stitches on circulars of a similar size, and still use the dpn in your right hand to do the actual knitting.

    I've never tried this, though. I know you don't want to risk your beautiful Starmore on some crazy experimental technique, especially when you're so close to the finish line. Still, it seems logical, doesn't it?

  4. Thanks for all the support and advice, everyone. I've been seeing stuff about the Log Cabin blanket that Greg mentions, so I'll have to give it a look. And Janelle, I think I'll just lump it through with the DPNs -- although what you wrote makes an awful lot of sense. Gretchen -- I need to add that book to my list. Knitting and Librarianship -- a dangerous combination!


  5. I've got no advice for you - except that DPNs aren't really all that scary. The sweater's beautiful, though.

  6. The whole DPN thing has gotten better. As the ribbing has lengthened on the collar, the entire circle has drawn in. As I go along, the problem seems to be solving itself. I added 8 more rows tonight. Only 8 more to go. I think I'll wait until tomorrow night. Otherwise, I'll be tempted to bind off past my self-imposed 9:00pm knitting curfew. That's the point at which mistakes multiply and my ability to deal with them diminishes!