first sweater post-mortem
So is it OK if we just blither about knitting in general here, as well? Because I am so excited by how well my first sweater turned out. I am not going to get all hubristastic about it, but for all the frustrations, it actually wasn't all that hard, and I am revved up and ready to go with more complicated projects.
I learned so damn much with this project; knitting in the round (the neck), picking up stitches (again, the neck) sewing invisible seams (and oh my god, it is SO DAMN COOL to watch the stitches disappear when you pull the thread tight), shaping, fitting sleeves into armholes, etc. I think, though, that the most important thing I learned was how to figure things out for myself when patterns aren't written as clearly as one would like. And also, when the author isn't clear, or gives flat-out crappy, confusing directions, don't blame yourself; just find somebody who can explain it in a way that you can understand. And, seriously, Stitch 'n Bitch is a lifesaver. I found Debbie Stoller's explanations for picking up stitches and sewing invisible seams so much more comprehensible than those in the book from which I got my sweater pattern. I will definitely knit some of the other patterns in The Yarn Girls' Guide to Simple Knits, since, in addition to being pretty damn easy, they're just the sort of knitwear I really like, but I can't say I thought much of most of their general knitting instructions.
I'm still not sure about going for one of the Summer Tweed patterns for the Olympics. I might have all I can do to get it done with something a bit easier, and done on bulkier yarn, but I've got about a week to figure it out and source anything I need, so I will let you all know when I decide. Right now, I'm going to treat myself to a quick, instant gratification knit of some sort, just as a reward for having stuck it out and concentrating on only one thing through the first sweater project. Oh, and the medal I intend to reward myself, if I succeed in my event is a new pair of disgustingly spendy Asciano Rosewood needles. I have one pair in 5 mm, and I adore them.