usually when i swatch, i end up going down at least one needle size, sometimes more. since i have both metric and US needles, it can take a while to figure out which size i want to go with. but last week i decided to swatch for a pair of broadripples, using (almost) the yarn specified in the pattern. and you know what? i used the needle size they said and got gauge dead on the first try. wow. how cool is that?
(on the left the overexposed pic, on the right the truer to color but too dark pic)
the broadripples are for (my brother) adam's girlfriend xela. she liked the pattern and picked out yarn ages ago, sort of for fun. but since i have some time before christmas (and lots of travel time coming uup) i thought i'd make her some socks got christmas. cast on yesterday, and you know, i forget how fast knitting can go if you have less than 6 stiches per inch. after just a few hours, i've got about 6 inches. these won't take long.
even though xela picked out the yarn, i'm not convinced she'll like it. the colors are a bit different than the website showed (it's elann esprit print berry garden colorway), a little darker. and they're not all colors that i would pick out for myself. but then chuck pointed out if she doesn't like them, then i won't have to make any more socks for her! an excellent point.
as of friday, the thujas are all done. (hence the new projects) i haven't got a good picture though. doesn't seem to matter what kind of lighting i try, they come out as black-looking blobs (despite being navy blue) *sigh* i'll keep trying and post good pics once i get them.
i was brave and finally ripped back the hederas. the one oversized, and the other past the heel. i figured if i was going to rip it out i might as well add an inch or two to the leg. before i start working on it again i'm going to have to do a swatch, just to make sure i know what i'm doing this time. augh. i'd rather swatch and be sure, but it's not my idea of fun knitting.
last week i even took time to be social on top of all that knitting. chuck got tickets through work to the top of the world classic, the first session on thursday. there were two games, the first was the UAF nanooks against the tennessee state tigers. that one was not too exciting, but the second was colorado state against oregon state, and that was more competetive. it's an invitational tournament, but there aren't very many well-known names that come. still, it was a fun night out, and free to boot.
today i finished up the FFF (Feather and Fan Faroese shawl) swatching. the silly pattern says 4-5 stitches per inch is best, and row gauge is the critical bit, but then they don't say what the row gauge is. duh. so i think i swatched 4 different needle sizes (remember that whole US-metric thing? yeah) and somehow got 6 stiches per inch for US 5/3.75 mm through US 7/4.5mm. how that works out i don't know. finally i said screw it and cast on with the one i liked best (they did look looser as i went up in size, but somehow the stockinette measurement stayed the same). after a few rows of seed stitch for the neck border i measured and it was 5 stiches per inch on the US 5. *sigh* swatches lie. trust your instincts.