Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Knitting inside out and Serging ahead

When I start a new hobby I think I can do really difficult things straight away. For my first proper knitting project in 2004 I chose to knit a Rowan cotton 'denim' jersey for my friend Slim: Fleet design. I had never actually learned how to knit properly or read a pattern so I had figured how to knit and purl through playing with needles and wool…but I thought a knit was a purl and a purl was a knit so when I started knitting this jersey it looked nothing like the picture in the book because I was actually knitting it inside out. It also took an incredibly long time, and over the course of many months I gradually relaxed, which made the front about 10cm longer than the back (tense concentration in the beginning) and the sleeves really really long because they came last. However, when sewing up, the neck hole was very small, so he could not get it over his head. So it became my jumper.
Rowan denim 'Fleet' jersey with very long sleeves
Rowan Fleet after the chop
This year I acquired a still boxed, never used serger/overlocker from Oxfam. It took me a while to pluck up the courage to attempt threading the beast, but once I got going I spent a happy Saturday chopping away at seams. My oddly proportioned Rowan was first on the list for the chop. There wasn't great method it, but I was very happy with the result (except one sleeve is still slightly longer than the other - I think this is because Madonna's Swept Away was on at the same time and it was like watching a car crash so I think I might have veered off my chalk lines in distraction).
Rowan 'Fleet' with normal sized sleeves

Inspired by this modest success, I attacked 2 of mum's homemade gems (she is a good knitter but I gave her a bad pattern). I love the tailored result, but the lovely soft wool sure does bobble. I did have a sweater debobbler but I think it is possessed by a demon because it doesn't work when I want it to and turns on by itself when no-one is looking at it. Anyway Slim fixed it so now it is broken completely. I used a Bic razor instead which is much better and I would highly recommend this method for debobbling sweaters.
Serging for Simpletons

Mum's home-made cardie pre- and post-serging attack
Mum's second attempt cardie post serging

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