Tuesday, January 24, 2012

EZ Knitting

I can't remember the first time I heard about Elizabeth Zimmerann, but I know it was after I started listening to knitting podcasts in 2005.

I picked knitting again becuase fun fur craze in 2004.  Everyone was knitting/crocheting fun fur scarves, and I decided to be one of them.  Since I was more proficient at crocheting, I crocheted many fuzzy scarves.  I made them for myself and female members of my family.  My daughters, my mom, mother-in-law, sisters-in-law... I don't know why my own sisters didn't get any.  When I got tired of the scarves, I decided to pick up knitting again.

Besides the ugly gray thing I knit as a child, I never made anything specific.  After my third child was born, I fiddled with the idea of knitting again.  My grandmother, who doesn't speak English, originally taught me to knit, so I didn't know any of the knitting terms.  I didn't know which was knit and which was pearl.  I didn't even remember how to cast on.  I bought a few knitting books, made swatches, practiced a few techniques, but never advanced beyond that.

The first thing I decided to knit was a sweater for Jeremy.  It was his birth that inspired me to want to knit again, so he, my only son, would be the recipient of my first knitting endeavor eight years later.  As always, I was super-ambitious with my first project and picked a child's guernsey from Debbie Bliss's How to Knit.  I can't recall the yarn I used, but it was cotton and was bought at a lys somewhere in Connecticut right after Jeremy was born.

I remember working on it over Christmas at my parents' house and my mom making fun of how  I held my needles like a child and how my stitches looked soooo uneven. There are a few mistakes on the sweater but I completed it in a few months.  The body of the sweater looks too short for the width and the arms, but I've looked at pictures on Ravelry recently and don't think it was anything that I did wrong.  I think he only wore the sweater 3 times, but I still have it.

so cute in his first (and only) Mom-made sweater

Getting back to Elizabeth Zimmermann...  I remember hearing about her on a podcast.  Maybe Brenda Dayne's Cast-on or Lime and Violet?  There was no Ravelry at time, so I checked her Knitting Workshop and Knitting Without Tears from the library.  I enjoyed looking at the patterns at the time and filed them away in my mind for future projects.  Listening to Paula's podcast Kitting Pipeline these past few months has brought EZ back in my mind.  She occasionally reads letters written to her from EZ, when Paula was still raising her now-grown sons.

I've joined the tens of thousands of knitters (over 16,500 on Ravelry) and have started my first baby surprise jacket for the swim coach's baby-to-be.  I'm using Adriafil knitcol yarn.  It's a dk weight, superwash, self-striping wool yarn and I'm loving how it's striping.


I have no idea what part of the sweater this will be... bottom of back?...front edge? 

Decreases done, starting the increases.  I'm still not sure what I'm knitting, but suspect the decreases somehow form the sleeves.

Aha!  It's starting to look like a cardigan!  First set of increases done, a few straight rows of garter stitch, picked up some stitches, starting the next set of increases. 

 I think I might have a problem.  I still have six rows left to go and I'm seriously low on yarn.  Why didn't I get more yarn?!!!!

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