Monday, April 14, 2008

Peer pressure knitting (aka Karen is neurotic)

Two posts in one day! Must be a blue moon out or something =D

Have you ever been kinda peer pressured into knitting something? This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Here's my story about it. Through Ravelry, I participated in a Knit it Forward exchange. For this exchange, we didn't have to make a finished item - rather, we were to send yarn and a pattern. I received a lovely, lovely package, and stored it away for later knitting.

That is, until I checked the group a couple days ago, and people are starting to post pictures of things they knit from their packages. All of a sudden, I wondered if my package giver would think that I was an ungrateful recipient if I didn't start on the project she had sent me.

And so, I cast on 108 stitches to make the lace cowl pattern that she sent me using the fluffy Red Heart Symphony she also sent over. The pattern itself is nice and simple, but I am reminded of why I don't usually like working with fuzzy yarns. Still, it's knitting up so airy and light that I think I can forgive it.

I added a slight twist, literally, to this project. I always wanted to try that Mobius type scarf/cowl thing, so I intentionally twisted my stitches when I joined in the round. We'll see how it turns out.

Out of curiosity, do any of you know how to block a lace item knit in the round? I've only ever blocked flat lace items.


Adrienne said...

I don't think I've ever felt "pressured" to knit something, but I've definitely felt a bit "left out" sometimes if I'm not knitting the latest "hot" thing. Usually it's when I really really love the thing that everyone's knitting, but I don't have the time/funds/skill to do it.

I don't think you'd be viewed as ungrateful if you didn't cast on for a project using swap yarn right away. What if you had a gajillion other things in your queue? What if your current goal was to finish your 101 UFOs? What if you couldn't decide what to make with the yarn? What if cowls are the one accessory that you hate the most in the entire world? There are so many reasons why you might be delayed in picking up the swap yarn.

I think this is part of why I don't participate in swaps (sorry, this is turning into an essay). I'm so picky about what makes it into my stash, that I'm afraid that I would hate the yarn that someone sent me. I'm afraid that I would view it not as a lovely gift someone gave me, but rather as yarn that I've been "burdened" with. I feel bad enough buying yarn for myself that I end up hating later, it would be even worse if I felt that way about yarn that someone else had given me.

Clearly I am not an equal opportunity yarn lover. =)

(I realize that the same thing could be said for the yarn that I threw in the box. But I figured Karen + Malabrigo + blue would probably be a good bet. But if you decided that you hated the yarn I would not be offended if you wanted to find it a new home. Honest! =))

I'm not sure about blocking lace in the round. I imagine that the cowl probably wouldn't need to be stretched really, so you could probably just lay it out flat. Or if you had a model head, that might work too. =P

Marie said...

The yarn does look lovely. I'm a fan of fuzzy yarns though.

I don't think you should have been pressured into knitting this pattern right away. Cowls are to be used in the Fall and Winter. It's Spring now. I would have at least tried to use that as an excuse. =)

Karen said...

Yeah...after reading both of your comments, I realized that I kinda bullied myself into it, which was quite silly.

And I think I probably won't be participating in any swaps anymore. I think I put too much pressure on myself. I wonder if the person I send stuff to will like it, I feel obligated to knit the pattern that was sent to me, etc.

And Adrienne, you are totally right that Karen + Malabrigo + blue is pretty much a fool-proof equation. =D