Luscious Gracious Knitting Tips #2
Tips From The Luscious Gracious Children (clarification of children's handwritten ones from the other day)
We at LusciousGraciousStudios have been accused of running a bit of a sweatshop here in Phoenix. But we ask you, how else could we serve our public?
So, here’s a little something garnered through those long, hot hours of knitting with wool in temperatures exceeding 115 degrees.
Always have yarn.
Knit what you feel like knitting.
Have a good yarn store to visit.
Have fun with your projects!
**Editorial Comment** Hmmmm. Surprisingly Zen-like for a Fiber Apprentice. Note to selves: Work her harder.
When you knit a sock on double pointed needles, always knit two extra stitches from the next needle before changing to the empty needle. For example, you have Needle 1, empty, in your hands. You knit all of the stitches from Needle 2 onto N1, but instead of using the now empty N2 to knit the stitches from Needle 3, you should knit two stitches from N3 onto N1, then knit the remaining stitches from N3 onto N2, and knit two stitches from N4 onto N2 before knitting onto N3, which will then be empty. Again, to clear that up, I will give you Lily’s exact words, “When you knit a sock, at the end of each needle, knit two stitches onto that needle.”
Why, you ask? Why, to get rid of pesky “ladders” where you switch needles, of course. Use in any type of double pointed needle knitting.
The rest of today's tips deal with the controversial. You have been warned!
#1 Choosing Yarn
This tip always gets people in an uproar. So, I am just going to come out and say it: Knit with your favorite yarn. What feels best to you in a yarn shop? Feel ALL the skeins, balls, hanks, cakes, cones.....and then buy some of what makes you melt. Favorite doesn’t have to mean expensive. You are going to be spending a lot of time with that yarn, especially if you are making yourself something you really want to wear. Time is more precious than money. Knit with the best (whatever that means to you).
#2 Steve says to felt whatever you want to, as long as it will felt
Girlfriend freaking out that you are putting angora or cashmere or hand-dyed alpaca in the machine? Laugh maniacally and throw it in for a hot bath! IT’S ONLY YARN, PEOPLE!!!! Felting doesn’t necessarily make the fibers more rough. You may be surprised at just how soft that little piece of knitted bunny hair becomes after a severe washing.
#3 Life Is Short Don’t waste time knitting something you would rather not. If you know that a new mom in the family is going to shrink whatever hand-knit dainties you give her, she would be happier with a gift card from Baby Gap. Brother-in-law want you to knit seat covers for his truck? This, the same guy who gave you a can of peanuts from the gas station on your 50th birthday? Naw. Tell him your arthritis is acting up, then give him the name and number of your knitting nemesis. Let her deal with his wacko requests. On the flip side, if your three-year-old niece asks for a fuzzy lime-green raincoat, and you’ve been dying to try out the pattern, start knitting. Shorten that “must knit” list, and start in on something that truly inspires you.
Also, if you get through a year of constant knitting, and see that you have nothing to show for it in your own drawers and closets, set aside the upcoming month or two for yourself. Knit ONLY things that you will wear or use. See how quickly your fingers fly when you know that you will be modeling your latest creation. Knitting for others, especially charity knitting, is very important. Just don’t forget that the knitter needs a little luxury, too.
So, what is Luscious Gracious suggesting? Treat yourself well. Try something new. Experiment. Jump off the bandwagon.
You know, same as always.
P.S. LouLou from Nova Scotia left a tip for our LuLu. Knit both socks at the same time. This is a great tip that Kiki usually follows for all the reasons LouLou mentioned, plus your tension may change before you get around to that second sock (even on the same needles with the same yarn, same # of stitches and rows). Don't let this happen to your socks....