Saturday, 7 September 2013

'Tension', or 'A most serious case of Re-Startitis'

I have issues. Tension issues. It started with the 'haircoloured handspun hat' a few nights ago - which came out enormous and had to be re-started two sizes smaller (child sized, although I don't have a small head). I'm now worried that following these instructions will result in a hat that's too small for me and that no one else will wear due to the rustic nature of this handspun*, so hopefully it'll be third time lucky.

Then I cast on the beautiful Rural Idyll ** and after knitting on it for a couple of hours - following the size that should fit my chest - it's clear that this would be big enough to house a small family! It's a garment knit in pieces from the bottom-up and I really wish it were top down in one-piece so it could be tried on as I go along. As it is, I'm going to have to cast on again in a smaller size and hope for the best as my gauge appears way off (although with this yarn it's difficult to get an exact measure - unless there is a trick I am unaware of?). I don't really want to alter the needle size very much, as I like the way the fabric is knitting up. 

I'm sure the smarty-pants knitters among you are feeling smug right now, and may even go as far as to leave a comment that I should have swatched and checked gauge before starting either of these, and I have no doubt you're right. You are absolutely spot on... but how can possibly 'waste' time on swatching when I have so many new things to cast on... like another pair of vanilla socks in the yummy yarn (Regia Snowflake Color 7712) that arrived this morning - at least there's no guessing with vanilla socks.

So if it's a little quiet around here it's because I am mostly knitting, undoing, and re-knitting. Let's hope there is some actual progress to show you by Wednesday.
* from handspun Welsh Mountain Black
** using King Cole Opium in Glacier 


  1. Yikes! I would personally swatch because it saves me the time of frogging and @#$%, restarting, and then reknitting.

  2. I've just had a similar problem - knitted a hat, almost finished, tried it on and it's way too small :( I did t do Amy switching or measuring and the frogged hat hasn't made it back onto the needles yet! Annoying as I really love the hat, I can't imagine I will learn from it and swatch and measure in the future though ;)

    Looking forward to seeing your Rural Idyll, it looks like a lovely pattern and I love the colour you are using

  3. It's kind of a bore having to do a tension swatch but sometimes it saves time when your having these problems. I have a friend who has quite a tight tension, she always knits with a bigger needle size than the pattern states which gives her the correct tension for the pattern.
    Good luck with your knitting :)


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