Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Alterknits and Other News

So, the Tiny Vest is finished, for the most part. I'm not so happy with it. It looks handknit, and not in a good way. I had some real problems with the edging on the armholes and neck. I tried to do an I-cord edging, but in spite of the fact that I own a bazillion knitting books, couldn't find directions that made any sense at all. Maybe Grumperina has done a tutorial. Anyway, I ended up doing a crocheted edge and I'm not thrilled. Also, I'm unhappy with the shoulder seams. Next time, I'm going to try three-needle bind off. But I am going to try blocking, and I'm thinking about making another one with different yarn and see if I like the results. I'd like to, eventually, develop and post patterns here. I was thinking of this little vest as my first attempt. We'll see.

Anyhow, in spite of the ridiculous size of my knitting library, I have bought a few new knitting books recently. I ordered Alterknits from Amazon, after hearing some good things about it. It is, in a word, yummy. The book is lush and gorgeous, from the binding to the photography. Radford's idea behind the book was to change the way she thought about knitting and take it into new areas. Some of the resulting projects are not for me (such as knitting with crepe paper), but some have unexpectedly lovely touches that spark the imagination. That's part of her mission--to get the reader to expand the boundaries of her craft and try new things. To that end, the book includes some creativity exercises. Some are frankly goofy (imagine yourself as a knitting superhero -- wait, I've already done that), others are inspiring. The book includes a creativity notebook, which is really just a little booklet of knitter's graph paper, for recording your ideas and responses to the exercises. It also includes some projects that are not strictly knitting, but knitting-related. One is the Recycled Sweater Felted Bag. (I have a Big Loser FO in my closet that I now have a happy use for--yay!) As eye candy and inspiration, it's amazing. Alterknits comes highly recommended.

Strangely, while I was working on the vest, another UFO was calling to me. For some reason, the toe-up socks that I put down when I joined the KALs were looking more alluring every minute. I've started carrying them around with me everywhere I go. Even doing just a couple rounds is so deliciously relaxing. Yesterday, I had a rather trying day, involving roofers who took me for a ride and stepping on an amazingly huge thorn in my yard. I felt that all I wanted to do was sit and knit my sock. That feeling is still with me.


Blogger Glaistig said...

Great (attorney) minds think alike, tee hee! I just purchased the Alterknits on Saturday.

I can't wait to see your vest! I need to weave in the ends on my ultra-basic version when I get home from work and I'll be done (?) (crosses fingers).

Isn't it lovely how something like knitting a sock can be so comforting? Knit on and hope you're having a better day. . . .

3:35 PM  
Blogger msubulldog said...

Knitting with crepe paper sounds like a fabulous exercise in frustration. Eeeek! Sorry your vest didn't turn out quite right, but interested to see what do you in subsequent versions . . . :)

8:53 PM  
Blogger knittinmom said...

Love the socks - aren't they soothing? I'm going to have to add Alterknits to my wishlist. The author did a book signing Monday night, but I couldn't make it because our knitting group met (how ironic is that?). I can't wait to get my hands on it!

1:19 PM  
Blogger Marisa said...

Following your comments on my site, I thought I'd pop by and take a peek at yours. While I'm not a knitter, I do think we're soul sisters. After reading your "100 things" list, all I have to say is this. Peanut butter and miracle whip sandwiches do rock! Outside of my mom's family, I've never known anyone to enjoy this delicacy.

1:07 PM  

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