Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Knit Along: Cabled Hand Mitts from Mass Ave Knit Shop - Day 2

Difficult, but not impossible
Two sets of directions!  Simultaneously!  Mostly mirrors of one another, but things will get more complicated when we reach the thumbs.  Still, it works.  And I am delighted to realize I will cast off a complete set of mitts, not just the first half.  
Like most knitters, I love to start things.  Seeing them through to the end?  Well, that’s just a bit harder.  Walk through my kitchen at any given moment and three (if not more) cabinet doors will be left open.  I plant but hardly ever water.  Don’t mind loading the dishwasher but loathe to empty it.  Am fine with putting wash in but hate taking it out of the dryer and folding it.  And writing books?  Well, let’s just say I’m no fun to be around when a deadline looms near.  Friends tell me these are symptoms of ADD, but I refuse to entertain the notion.
Should you be attempting this two-fisted feat of fiber yourself, a few hints are in order:
  • Divide the mitts unevenly on the two halves of your circ so that the cable section is all on the same needle (11 stitches the left hand front, and 10 on the right hand front, for example).
  • Use different colored stitch markers to help you keep the left and right mitts straight.  I used green on the left hand and orange on the right. Until you get to the cable portion (and probably even after), place an additional marker on the “front” of both mitts so you know exactly where you are anywhere in your round.
  • Try not to stop in the middle of a complete “round” of both hands if you can help it.  Inform you family of this requirement, or you know what will happen. Educate them that the response “I will pick you up from Youth Group in five minutes when I get to the end of this round,” contains just as much love as “I will drop everything I hold dear and see to your needs immediately.”  Maybe even more.
  • Cut and paste or fold your pattern so that you can make a copy where the directions for both hands are on a single sheet.  I did this for the directions up until the thumbs, then I’ll make another single “cheat sheet” for the thumbs, etc.  This helps to keep you from forever flipping back and forth through the pattern pages.
With all these aids intact, it’s actually not been too bad.  The occasional furrowed brow, but for the most part the lush texture of this yarn is enough to soothe over any confusion.  The right fiber can motivate you to just about any skill challenge, right?
Don’t forget to leave a comment so you can win the cool stuff!


Linda B said...

I guess I should try to do two socks at once myself one of these days. I cast some on but haven't touched them since March! I think I'd enjoy it more if the circs were longer . . .

Allie Pleiter said...

Yes, Linda, longer circs (I like 40" and 47") make things much more comfortable. The thrill you get when you're done--and that means ALL done--is worth the complication!

Jenn M. Gross said...

Hi, this is Jenn Gross. I've written to your before, emailing you in praising you about your books? I have a question about knitting. Once you start the first row of knitting, you just knit that row, right? I'm a beginning knitter, so I just want to make sure. How do you get a scarf? Because I've knit about three rows and it still looks like one row. Help!! Thanks. :)

Allie Pleiter said...

Yes, you're essentially stacking stitches on top of each other every row. Each row does half a "ridge" if you're in garter stitch, so it may indeed look like it takes more passes over the needles to make a row. It might help to google some video of whatever stitch you're doing, just to match things up if you don't have a knitter looking over your shoulder during those newbie days. Keep at it!

Kimberly and Abby said...

Ohhhh, what a wonderful color. You make it sound possible, but you're still braver then me. :-)

Maybe I'll learn to knit one of these days. I downloaded a free "learn to knit" e-book recently, but that's it.

Bonnie said...

Congratulations on the progress! I recently decided to knit two sleeves at the same time. It worked, but it was stressful.