Sunday, September 17, 2006

Selfish September Day 17

I have put in my selfish stitches (and actually have plans that involve other than knitting for later today--imagine that--film, if the work gets done, at 11) .

Progress continues on the Ragg. It truly is mindless dipshit knitting. I'm back to the Ann Budd book, looking at the sleeve cast on. Not nearly ready, but I figured that I should be prepared. And I might decide to start the sleeves now, so that when I arrive at the magic moment when the body is Long Enough, I am ready to attach the sleeves and begin the downward (or upward) trek to the neckline.

Decision time: Do I want a "blousey" cuff (where the cuff itself is tight, but there are a bunch of increases immediately after the ribbing) or do I want the gradual increase that a "normal" adult sweater sleeve employs?

Stay tuned.

In which I explain why I switched to 14" straights:

Never, ever say "never!" It will always come back to bite you squarely on the butt! I rarely use 14" straights. There, is that better?

Commence Backstory:

A couple of days ago, I cast on the remaining Frenzy for a cat mat for our sweet and charming Sparky the Bob-tailed Wonder Cat (Formerly Kitten) , as she likes to be called.

Bernat Frenzy (bought remaindered at the Dollar Tree) is a 3-ply, somewhat fuzzy, semi-novelty yarn made of ack (of course), nylon, polyester (and why is that not "ack" you might wonder), alpaca, and mohair. Closeup to the left.

Did I mention that it's fuzzy? It splits a bit, too.

The size 13 circ that was available (others being otherwise occupied with other projects, or MIA) is a Bates Quicksilver (and I won't be buying more of those any time soon).

The joins are okay (just) when they are new, but the plastic needle and the nylon cord soon part company in small splintery chunks that catch on the fuzziness of the Frenzy.

And so, I switched to aluminum straights as soon as the fabric was decreased enough to fit on the 14" needle.

Made for some interesting maneuvering and poking of cats and such. She was not amused!

And why is a new Cat Mat even needed?

Here's the old one.

Some charming KMart ack (Green Oak?) that I paid (I think) about 50 cents a skein for (full price), so you know it was the Real Good Stuff, made many years ago.

Over time, kids and cats and Charlie, the beagle we had for many years BK (before kids) and DB (during babies) took their toll on Old Faithful.

It's stiff in spots. Limp in others. A victim of over-zealous dryering.

Tears and snags abound. "Ends" that were once woven in have popped out in more places than you can count.

Years of being used as a super-hero cape, a tent, a bedroll. You know.

Some are worse than others. Some have been repaired.

Imagine, if you can, my incredible mortification when the New Daughter-In-Law (before she was even a fiancee) unfolded the Cat Mat to wrap up in.

Say it with me: Ewwww

But she didn't know how incredibly nasty it can/could be. Until she opened it up. . .

And I'm certain that she's not the only guest who saw a cream colored afghan on the sofa in the TV room and thought "afghan" before it was unfolded.

Clearly, it was time for a replacement.

And so, last night, I wove in the last end, clipped off the last ort, and ta dah! Cat Mat. And it's small enough so that no one can possibly mistake it for something to wrap around cold feet.

I hope.
It's cute!
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