So all you evil knitters, that have been making me look bad these past several months, I have finally joined your ranks!
AT LONG LAST!!! THE ART OF THE NEEDLE HAS BEEN DEMYSTIFIED!!!
I joined Craftster in July this year and one of the first things I spotted a lot of were 'Jayne hats'. My hubby, Firefly/Serenity geek that he is, became a petulant pouty child and has been constantly nagging me to knit him one.
Jeepchick BEFORE Craftster would have gotten out the Visa and ordered one from any of the knitters selling these online.
Hubby has been deployed since August and at least once a week, he asks me on the phone - don't forget my JAYNE HAT. Mind you, he insists I KNIT one, not buy one. Slight hiccup: I haven't picked up knitting needles in over 23 years ( I am 35).
Enter Jeepchick AFTER Craftster.
My grandma taught me when I was 9, but I haven't attempted anything since I was 11 or 12. Resourceful little craft vixen that I am, I tried to teach myself with books, podcasts, and videos. To no avail. I am just not wired to learn that way.
Finally I said the heck with it, and I signed up for a Knifty Knitting and Crochet class at my nearest Michael's. Happy DAY! Yesterday I went for my lesson and found I was the only pupil. My grandmotherly instructor (with the mouth of a sailor) and I had a swell time. I had my very own personal knitting tutor for two entire hours. I told her I was hoping it would be like riding a bike, that it would just 'come back to me'. She told me it was more like sex. This was our first verbal exchange to one another, and I was too shocked to reply.
Too bad I didn't. I now find myself wanting to know what she meant exactly.
Well, after some trial and error, it finally did come back to me. Apparently, my grandmother had taught me a speedy version of something called the continental method. It was frustrating at first because my instructor kept scolding me for not using my right hand to pick the yarn up and I appeared to be knitting the wrong way. She reminded me of the nuns at school from when I was a kid. (Well, except for her potty-mouth.) I swear I expected her to rap my knuckles with a ruler. We finally got it all worked out though and I 'found my rhythmn' and was knitting like a champ only one hour into the lesson.
I had brought in the pattern from http://redshirtknitting.com/?page_id=222
and she took some time to patiently decipher and demonstrate the mysterious terms like k2, purl, cast, and bind. She also explained things like dye lots, types of yarn, needle sizes, gauge, etc. I got the ribbing done and the first 2 rows after that, and then my class was over.
Last night I put my son to bed and settled in for a night of knitting, I got into my groove and tore through my project. By the time I had 'decreased' the top of the hat and was ready to bind, I realized I had forgotten how to do it. eek!!! I ended up destroying the last 20 minutes of work and it looked like some yarn monster had taken a big jagged bite out of my project (4 rows worth). Not knowing how to fix the big chunk missing, I had to undo those rows in their entirety (which was a pain, because every other one was decreasing) and reknit them. It looked almost as good, but not quite. Still by the time I got to the end, I did not know how to bind off. I scoured my knitting books, laminated drawings, and You Tube knitting videos - but I was hopeless without my surrogate knitting granny.
I wish I could tell you what I did, but I am not exactly sure. I can tell you that the top row ended up being something like a drawstring opening. I pulled the yarn through tightly and was able to close the opening that way.
I knit the red ear flaps right onto the orange part of the hat. One side looks perfect, the other one, I must have done something wrong because the orange is showing through as a thin line in my top row of red. I forgot exactly how I started the first earflap by the time I started the second. Oh well. At 7:40 am this morning, it was all DONE!
You may wonder why the rush, since I waited this long already. Well, tonight our Air Force base held an event called Project Happy Holidays. They were photos with Santa, crafting tables for kids (none for grownups - wahhh!), and several tables full of free goodies like books, christmas music CDs, toiletries, and snacks, snacks, and more snacks. Add food, a 4 piece band playing holiday tunes, and a play area for kids and you get some idea of the madness taking place. In short, we had everything we needed to prepare awesome, diabetic-coma-inducing postage-free Holiday care packages to our deployed family member.*NEW PIC* HUBBY FINALLY FINALLY Sent me a pic taken with his isight cam. Actually he sent me a little video and this is a screen grab. Trust me - you DON't want to see the vid. PLEASE IGNORE Hubby's absolutely HIDEOUS Deployment moustache.
I think the hat adds a nice bit of color to an otherwise blah monochromatic outfit of tan flight suit and tan boots. It is colder there than I would expect, plus the planes themselves are cold - so he wears it all the time. (He better - as much as I sweated over it!) Two more months and I can finally start preparing for him to come home. (sigh)
This first photo is my son wearing Daddy's hat just before it went into the box bound for Iraq. The pom-pom doesn't show up well, as the oversized hat just flopped towards the back on his tiny head. The other photos are of myself with our son making a foam photo frame, and our boy with the wall of Holiday boxes. Our box to Daddy is easy to spot, as it is the only box on the entire wall covered in stickers. It is also directly over his head.
So now, I am going to bed early to make up for last night's lack of sleep. Tomorrow, I will start on a matching Little Jayne hat for my son. Although since I don't know to make the pattern smaller, I may just duplicate it exactly and run it through the washer and dryer until it fits.
Any suggestions on pattern modification would be appreciated.
My hubby has been gone since this summer and isn't due home for another 3 and half months. Craftster has been a life-saver to me on many a lonely evening. I have been frequenting the sewing board and am thrilled to finally make it over to the knitting board (where all the cool kids hang). I am looking forward to many more knitting projects this winter, now that I am finally got back on my bike and learned to knit. Sad to realize though, over seven months without a spouse, when he gets back, I will be lucky if the sex is just like knitting.