A Love Knit Up

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

On Arrogance

In my incredible arrogance against large needles (and the fact that they are difficult for me to hold) I have not knit anything with needles larger than size 7 in a good long time. However, in working on the Streaker's shrug I discovered something that I (in my infinite delusions of grandeur) had forgotten: when you knit things on large needles, things go damn fast! It is possible to knit three inches in 20 minutes, even on a garment that stretches across your back! It's only impossible if you're knitting on size four needles.

Looking over my yarn supply I noticed something: I have no full skeins of yarn that have recommended needle sizes over 5. I'm inexplicably drawn to yarn and projects that will take me forever to knit and will take miles and miles of intricate lace, all the while neglecting all of the instant gratification given by large yarn and needles. (And remember how I said htat I hated double points? I could get obsessed by knitting socks (like some people) but my hatred for double points precludes such a simple solution...) I think that in the future I'm going to have to make myself knit things on big needles sometimes, just to make sure that I remember how rewarding it can be.

Have I mentioned that my bf is starting to knit? He claims that he isn't really into it yet (yeah, right) although he occasionally picks it up to knit a little at random times in the day. He doesn't have much time, so he doesn't knit that much. But his knitting is already even (although a little too tight) and straight, so I predict that he will be a wonderful knitter. The main problem that we're having is knitting style. I'm a continental knitter, but continental is more difficult to learn, so I showed him English knitting. (Which he learned in about five minutes, brilliant man that he is.) Unfortunatley, the two of us working together couldn't figure out how to both hold the right needle in the hand and put the yarn around the needle (to make the stitch). So he's experimenting with different ways to hold the needles. We'll see what he comes up with. You'd think that two intelligent college students could come up with something, wouldn't you? But, apparently, you'd be wrong.

All together, I have learned two valuable things:
1. Just because needles are big doesn't mean that what comes off of them is inferior (and in some ways it is superior). (On the other hand, looking at the size 50 needles that Knit.1 was advertizing just made me laugh. Is there yarn BIG ENOUGH for those?!) Don't be arrogant about needle sizes.
2. English knitting is faster to learn, even though the question of how to hold the needle can be challenging. Don't be arrogant about knitting styles.

And at the moment I am so fed up with grading (3 hours down and about a gazillion left to go) that I'm going to take a 20 minute bus ride (when I could take a 5 minute one and then walk for 5 minutes) so that I have time to knit.


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