Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Allow myself to introduce... myself...

...name that movie. Whoa, hi, Cyprienne here! I've been knitting for a decade, seriously pursuing the craft for the past four years. I've never blogged before, a fact which I'm sure is all too apparent at this juncture. :) My friends are super wonderful, but I think even they get a little sick of hearing about knitting; this site and my Twitter account will be used as a crafty brain dump of sorts. I enjoy singing, reading, playing video games, and watching movies with subtitles -- and this may be the last time you'll hear about any of that. You may, however, hear more about my husband and daughter as relates to my knitting adventures (and current projects!). My hairdo and my bedhead are the same thing.  The music of Sly & the Family Stone has saved my day on more than one occasion. I continually have melted chocolate on the front of my shirt; this is no one's fault but my own.

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Back at the turn of the century -- the year 2000, that is -- I was a student at a small liberal-arts college, trying to learn how to think critically and write both clearly and concisely. A trip to an honors conference provided the necessary time and talent needed to begin a hobby; we had two and a half days away from school, and our professor came armed with several sets of straight needles and worsted weight acrylic. Nine of us attempted to knit poolside while other students looked at us askance as they splashed by.

Fast forward several scarf-filled years: following graduation, I got a job and moved to the general vicinity of Washington D.C., the "most powerful city in the free world," a place where I knew precisely five people over the age of eighteen. Occasionally one coworker or another would invite me to go bowling or something, but mostly I needed something to do. Miles of garter stitch had lost its appeal; I was going to knit a sweater!

This sweater:

in this color:

If I had known only then what I know now...
- that the meaning of "moss stitch" depends on which side of the Atlantic one is on;
- that gauge, while not important for scarves, matters a whole heckuva lot with sweaters;
- that my usual yarn tension is considered to be quite loose;
- that when a pattern mentions a certain size of needle, it is merely a suggestion.

Long story short: I have a cardigan made from beautiful, expensive yarn that is triple its intended size. Rather than frog and reknit, I have kept it as an object lesson in the importance of swatching for gauge. And as a warm layer that fits over anything I could possibly wear. A fisherman sweater could fit under this bad boy with room to spare.

Since then, I've made about a hundred attempts at various knitted projects; most have been successful, more or less, but the process of knitting tends to matter more to me than the product. If I make a mistake that isn't too terribly obvious, I'll leave it. It is handmade, after all. No human can achieve perfection -- especially not me. :)

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