I hope everyone has a happy and delicious Thanksgiving! Lowell and I headed back to Virginia for Thanksgiving with my family. The only good thing about the plane flight was the uninterrupted, pure knitting time. The bad part was that I was in the middle seat (we take turns in the middle and previous flight I got the window) and I’m kind of obsessive about not impacting the person next to me, unless it’s Lowell. I developed an interesting twitch after sitting hunched over for 4 hours trying to knit a sock. It’s okay, though, because the sock is lovely. Can’t show it to you, though, because if it continues to be lovely, it’s going to be submitted to Knitty.
Last night, I went digging through the family room to see if I could find any of my old knitting. I dug through tons of stuffed animals, searching for any of the doll blankets that I had made. All I got was a lot of sneezes. I was worried that all of the old knitting had gotten lost or disintegrated, although I’m not sure Red Heart Super Saver biodegrades. I settled on finding my old needles and was happy to find that there were still some scraps of knitting on the needles!
It was really fun going through my old knitting things. My mom gave me all her old knitting/crochet needles when I learned to knit around 9 or 10. The needles were all kept in this great tube with a little latch at the top. The center of the lid had a hole in it, which at the time confused me but I assumed it was to allow taller needles to fit in the tube (you could let them stick out the top). Now I know that the hole is for the yarn, like these new containers, but I remember puzzling over it for a long time.
Another thing that confused me was the DPNs. I didn’t know why some of the needles were very short and didn’t have stoppers at the end. And, what really confused me, was why in the world were there four of them? I thought that you were supposed to pair them up and keep the others as spares! I would tie pairs of needles together with scraps of yarn so that all the pairs were together. I divided the DPNs up into pairs and tied them together. Not all of the needles had matches, which bugged me to no end. (Look at those DPNs… the one in the middle is the world’s longest DPN, I swear!) I remember being very amused at the little needle protectors, although I didn’t know that’s what they were. They’re very squishy rubber and they only cover the very tips of the needles. The rest of the cover just flops around.
I had one pair of needles that was bought just for me and those were always my favorites. I tended towards the plastic needles over the aluminum ones, because I didn’t like how cold and hard the needles were in my hands. I always chose color over material, though. If I wanted to knit with blue needles, then I’d pick up some aluminum ones. Now, I can’t stand plastic needles and only somewhat tolerate aluminum. Ah, how things change.
On to the knitting. When I relearned knitting a few years ago, I kept knitting into the back of the stitch. It felt more natural. Well, that’s apparently because I was knitting all my stitches twisted as a kid.
These pictures are awful, but I don’t have a lightbox or more importantly a tripod. Look at that lovely cast on edge there, cast on with the backwards loop method. All garter stitch, all twisted. In a nice pastel purple Red Heart acrylic. Still on the needle, even!
This piece is interesting. It appears that I accidentally did some short rows. One of the reasons that I quit knitting as a kid was because I could only stop at the end of a row, which was inconvenient. If I put the needles down mid-row, I had no idea which needle had been in my right hand. Here, I obviously picked up the knitting mid-row and continued working, having no idea (or maybe just a sneaking suspicion) that I was knitting the wrong direction!
I don’t remember ever learning how to purl. But this piece proves that I must have because here, in all it’s twisted glory, is a tiny swatch of stockinette. This might have been near the end of my knitting as a kid, because the cast on is much nicer, but the piece is smaller. Towards the end, I was knitting smaller pieces and sewing them together into small “blankets”.
Going back to my knitter roots was a lot of fun. Because of the long gap between knitting crazes (almost 15 years!) these swatches almost seem like they belong to someone else. It was amazing how many memories came back when I opened the tube of needles. I wish I could find some of my finished “blankets,” but these little pieces are enough.