Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Work No Longer In Progress: RIP KNUS

Update on the update: OK, I was right the first time. One of the skeins I just unwound was cut half way through (so it presented as 2 balls - but the same size as one another so it confused me). To clarify - I've got 1025 yards - I know. I weighed the yarn. That's slightly over 5 skeins because Sweet Georgia errs on the side of giving me more yarn than the label promises.

Updated: Egad! I'm still ripping back this fabric - it's been more than an hour (I wrote this post, originally, last night, with the intention of undertaking the undoing of this sweater when I got home from work. I guess, having never done this before, I underestimated how long this would take.  Moreover, I was wrong about how much of this yarn I purchased?!?! (And I just purchased it all.) I actually have 1200 yards (6 skeins). Which means that I'd actually knit 900 yards before ripping back. Whoa, painful. And now I'm up to 8700 yards of stash yarn. I feel a bit overwhelmed.

By now it's done. I've ripped back the onerous, clunky, unhappy-making KNUS. It's rare that I dislike knitting something so much. I've actually never before ripped back a sweater that's 700 900 700 yards complete (that's 70 per cent of the finished garment). I've actually been avoiding the project bag for the last week. Many things I may be but "procrastinator" is amongst them. In truth, I've been on the fence about this garment since I was 100 yards in and then I spent another 30 hours knitting 600 800 600 more yards only to feel increasingly iffy with every row. (In retrospect, maybe I spent longer than 30 hours. It's not like I time myself while doing these things.)

Sometimes you have to cut your losses (and be grateful for the opportunity to make something else) but man, just rewinding 700 900 700 yards of yarn by hand is enough to put one off the task. Never mind all the work I'll simply have to chalk up to "learning". Fucking learning.

On the plus side, that gives me another 1000 1200 1000 yards of worsted for the stash. And that was the underrepresented yarn-weight!

So today I'd be grateful if you could regale me with a story about a time when you ripped back a major project and it was super unpleasant for a mere 10 minutes (but then you realized what a necessary and positive experience it turned out to be). Or you could tell me how it tortured and tormented you and you've never got over it. I'm looking for empathy. I'll take what I can get.

13 comments:

  1. Hey k-line: been there, done that! The last knitting project that I frogged back to nothing was (theoretically) a batwing sweater I made from a beautiful merino cashmere blend. The pattern was knitted in two pieces -- a left side and a right side then seamed down the center back. When the back was seamed, it created a huge V from the bottom to the shoulder blades -- awful! To be fair, the pattern only had a photo of the front of the sweater.... The pattern was lace and with the slightly fuzzy yarn was an absolute horror to take apart. But the yarn had been almost $100 and the color is lovely. I very loosely wound the yarn as I "de-knitted" it, let it rest for a few weeks to relax, then rewound it into balls. I took the project apart five years ago and know what pattern I want to use for the second attempt but just haven't gotten the enthusiasm for it yet. What I try to keep in mind when this happens is that I can re-knit the yarn. No so easy with a sewing project that goes wonky! So sorry this happened to you but you've made a good save: someday that yarn will be something that you love!

    Cynthia

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    1. Cynthia: Thank you for sharing! Really! And I love the term "de-knitting". That's what I'm using from now on.

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  2. I knit this: http://twistcollective.com/collection/index.php/component/content/article/60-winter-2008-patterns/148-vivian-by-ysolda-teague
    In a reclaimed lovely soft red merino. Both fronts, back, both sleeves. Seamed it up. Became clear what I had been denying for hour after hour. It just didn't work. Wrong yarn. I ripped it out. Am now knitting this Ondawa. Zillions of tiny twisted ribs and cables. I think it's working. Unless I'm in denial again...

    Do you feel better now? ;-)

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    1. I feel better! And whoa, that was a complicated knit, Rise! I have to look up the Ondawa. You really do like those cables :-)

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  3. I just ripped out a baby sweater that I had blocked and sewn together. The poor child would have to be a mutant to wear it ...it had the skinniest arms I have ever seen on a sweater, and yes, I double checked the pattern. I knit it in the truck, while waiting for my husband to ride his portions of our bike trip to the Yukon. I had only brought a couple of projects to work on, so I kept on knitting long past when I should have stopped. Oh well. I still haven't found a replacement pattern for the yarn. The twins will be toddlers before I finish. Maybe I can make them something in polar fleece instead.
    Barb

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    1. Ha! Mutant baby sweaters for the win :-) But you had to keep going if it's all the yarn you had on the trip!

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  4. I can relate - I knit the Miette, my first big knitting project I had done for years.... And it was waaay too small- even for my daughter! So I frogged it and with bigger needles re-knit it- fits well but the *%!*# wool is pilling! Argh!

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    1. I find Andi's patterns do run snug (because she's as into the negative ease as I am!) But I'm so impressed that you could bring yourself to reknit it with different needles. That's very cool-as-a-cucumber. Pilling throws me over the edge, btw.

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  5. I knit the Elizabeth Zimmerman Bog Jacket in a gorgeous alpaca yarn. Three colors, intarsia design on the back. Got all the way to the I-cord edging before I wore it long enough to discover that I'm allergic to alpaca.

    The almost finished coat was sentenced to purgatory in a large contractor's trash bag until I could look at it long enough to rip and rewind.

    Still a painful memory but seeing the balls of yarn is much better than having the garment taunting me each time I go into the stash.

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    1. Lord - you did colour work and then ripped back! So sad! I feel your pain. And I'm allergic to alpaca too. My first knit was in Berocco Alpaca and I gave it to my mother. I completely agree that it's painful to rip back but I feel liberated by seeing the skeins in the stash because they represent new potential, not that pattern I just couldn't get with.

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  6. Yep! Been there...done that. Depends on the yarn and the project. Sometimes it goes straight back on the needles as something new. Sometimes not. I recall a particularly hateful batch of Cashmerino that after 3 or 4 attempts was put in a bag and donated to a friend's stash. I simply couldn't bear the sight of it any longer. It had to go!

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