Wednesday, September 08, 2021

Unraveled, Week 36/2021

I have to say that I rather like having the start of the work week be a Wednesday! We are expecting some rain to move in later this morning, so I'm keeping this short so I can get out for my walk before then, but I can't let a Wednesday go by without checking in with Kat and the Unravelers.

I actually don't have much to share this week because with a busy work week last week and the holidays this week, I haven't done much crafting or reading. I'm also holding off on starting any new projects until the Pigskin Party starts tomorrow (because WIPs don't count), but I also didn't like the idea of my hands being idle until then, so I started a dishcloth -- just a variation on the old standby Ballband Dishcloth:

The multicolored yarn is Knit Picks Dishie and the dark blue is Lily Sugar'n Cream Denim. I expect I'll be able to finish this up at some point today, because it's mindless enough knitting that I can work on it while reading stuff for work.

Yesterday I also finished (and blocked) my Shifty swatch, and now I have a bit of a conundrum that I hope you all can help me with!

This swatch was done on US 3/3.25 mm needles (bottom) and US 2/2.75 mm needles (top). My stitch gauge is spot on with the smaller of the two needles and about a stitch and a half off with the larger size. Here is my conundrum: My bust size falls between two sizes in the pattern (34 and 38 inches), and the recommended ease is 2 inches of negative ease to 2 inches of positive ease. I'd prefer to have a little bit of positive ease because I always wear my sweaters with a shirt underneath them. If I go with the US 2, the smaller size would give me 1 inch of negative ease but the larger size would give me 3 inches of positive ease. If I go with with the US 3, I could knit the smaller size and end up with almost 2 inches of positive ease, but the fabric is also a little looser. Then there's a third possibility -- use a US 2.5/3.0 mm needle -- that would give me a fabric somewhere in between and I could knit the smaller size and likely end up with closer to zero ease or minimal positive ease. What do you think?

I haven't done very much reading since last Wednesday, in large part because work got very busy, so I've only finished one book -- but it was a good one!

Both Mary and Katie had raved about A Tale for the Time Being, so I was excited to read it when my hold from the library came up several weeks earlier than I was expecting it. It took me several chapters to get into it, but once I did, I was hooked. This was one of those books that I found myself thinking about any time I wasn't reading it, and I found it to be so delightfully original in how it approached the story. It's not a book that's easy to describe, but I will say that what I found most interesting was that the author was a main character in it, even though it's considered fiction. That had me wondering often what was real, if any of it was, and what was made up. I can definitely see myself rereading this at some point, because I'm sure I missed things in my excitement to see how it would end. I gave it 5 stars.

Currently I am rereading Jane Eyre, which I have read many times and which I reread every several years (it's one of my all-time favorites). It is the classic that Sara and Chelsey are discussing this month on the Novel Pairings podcast. The copy I've linked to here is the paperback I used when I read it the first time, for my eighth-grade English class, and the price listed on it is $2.95! I've also started listening to the Craftlit podcast again after a long hiatus, and the new book The Leavenworth Case, which is entirely new to me.

What are you crafting and reading these days?


  1. I have no idea how to solve your needle size conundrum but I like the look with the larger needle. I don’t know that podcast but will take a look.

  2. I'm not sure I can help much with your gauge dilemma. Personally I always want some positive ease because I hate tight clothing, but ymmv. I personally like the fabric knit on US 3 needles, but I think you are the best judge in this case!

  3. I'd go with the bigger needles for more positive ease but I like loose fitting sweaters. I still haven't read A Tale for the Time Being but it's on my list.

  4. Like everyone else, I prefer loose sweaters, so I'd go with the larger needles. I can't believe I've never read Jane Eyre...I should remedy that!

  5. The 2.5 needle might be the thing for that sweater... but do you want to knit a sweater on that size needle? Also, going with the larger needle, could you knit a smaller size and have it fall perfectly with the ease you want?

    I am off to find that Ozeki book! Thank you!

  6. I'm so glad you loved A Tale for the Time Being! re: Shifty - I vote for the size 3 needle with the 34" pattern. I really like the way the fabric looks and I think the sizing will be perfect for you. (of course I also always think about row gauge in a top-down sweater - and assume that you'll be ok with what you get on the size 3?)

  7. I'd vote for the size 3 needle and a little positive ease but I rarely wear a sweater without a shirt underneath. The fabric looks beautiful. I loved A Tale for the Time Being. We had a great discussion about the novel in my local book group. I listened to it and then read it - two completely different experiences.

  8. I would go for the fabric that you like best, and if needed do some math, so you'll end up with a sweater that you really like on all fronts.

  9. I frequently have gauge issues, but I never regret going with FABRIC rather than SIZE. It takes a little math, frequent measuring . . . and a lot of faith. But it works! I read A Tale of the Time Being when it first came out and I loved it! It's one of those books that sticks with you over the years, for sure. :-)

  10. If you want to wear a shirt underneath, I think I'd go for the 3.0mm needle. The pattern is of course more three-dimensional on the smaller needles, but maybe the middle ground is the best option especially if you would like some room for the shirt!

  11. I also vote for the larger needles. I think the extra positive ease would be really cute on a cropped sweater.

    So glad you loved A Tale for the Time Being AND that you were able to savor it. And I agree - I found the characters endlessly fascinating and they felt so real to me. I think I'll be rereading it in a few years. And I'd love to hear your thoughts on the ending :)