Thursday, August 04, 2011

Monster Knitting

Possibly the only thing that did not get done on the mountain vacation was knitting. There was not a lot of sitting around time, and what there was got completely absorbed by the 959-page, 10 pound, A Dance With Dragons, that I dragged around all week (even to Camelbeach!).

I knitted a total of 4 rows on the lace edging to my Taygete shawl. That's it.
Well, I actually knitted them twice, since the first time I totally messed up. So can I count 8 rows of knitting? Over 300 stitches a row? Maybe not. Oh well.

Fortunately, there was a lot more knitting going on at home before we left. Mathboy finished his Loch Ness Monster, from Hansi Singh's Amigurumi Knits, about a month ago.
Loch Ness 1
Loch Ness 2
Isn't it adorable? He did everything by himself with this monster. There were several difficult skills that he had to learn, including seaming, picking up stitches, kitchnering, short rows, and i-cord. I was impressed.

After he finished that, we were both excited to start some projects out of our newest indulgence: The Big Book of Knitted Monsters, by Rebecca Danger.

I decided to start with Bea the Basement Monster. I figured it would be a great stash-buster pattern, calling for 1 skein of worsted wool and another 1/2 skein in a contrast color for the panel on the bottom of the monster's body. I grabbed a well-marinated skein of dusky purple Plymouth Galway that I found on a sale rack 3(?) years ago, and some leftovers of gorgeous Dream In Color Classy in a hot pink and purple blend called Ruby River, and dove right in.

I followed directions, gamely holding two strands of the yarn together and knitting around and around. I watched as the monster got bigger and bigger and the skein got smaller and smaller--and very quickly, too, since I was knitting from both the inside and the outside of the skein at the same time. Suddenly, I found myself scrounging in the cedar chest, hoping I still had another skein of purple Galway (whew! yes!). By the time I bound off the top of the body, Bea was an 18-inch tall monster of a monster!

Only then did I think to check Ravelry for other knitters' comments on the pattern. I learned that the pattern contains a pretty major mistake: it's not supposed to be knit double-stranded on size 9s, but rather single stranded on size 7s. The designer calmy told one ravelry user, oops sorry for the confusion. "Confusion?" This is a pretty major mistake, that doubles the amount of yarn you need for the project. It's more than just a little "confusion." There is no errata listed anywhere for the pattern. If you can't access knitter comments on Ravelry, you're out of luck.

No matter. She's huge but she's awesome. She likes to hang out on Dd's bed, because she matches the decor so perfectly. And because she's so big, she's a perfect back rest.

Mathboy started Lurlene the Laundry Monster, out of a really soft spring green alpaca. As of today, he has finished the body and a couple of her limbs.
She likes to supervise his piano practicing.

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