Tuesday, April 1, 2008


I've passed what originally would have been the halfway point of the baby blanket for Andrea, but of course I am adding some reapeats to account for the yarn shrinking in the wash. I am balancing my paranoia regarding the shrinking against my paranoia that I will run out of yarn and my boredom with the project. It is going pretty quickly, but it is getting kind of old.

The original pattern calls for 13 repeats of the main color, one of the contrast, four more of the main, one more of the contrast, and then 13 repeats of the main color. I'm adding in another repeat of the stripe section, which adds 5 rows. I finished most of that section last night before I just got worn out and had to quit. I'm trying to decide whether I should add another stripe sequence or go with what I've got. I calculate that based on the length it is now, it will be about 24" long when finished. It's currently between 18 and 19 inches wide.

My issue is that I know it will shrink more lengthwise than widthwise and I am afraid of ending up with a square. :oP If it shrinks the 10% the ball band warns about and which my swatch supports, it'll end up being a little under 22 inches long. It won't shrink as much widthwise based on my swatch - my swatch was 4 inches wide before washing and 3.75 after, and it was 4.5 inches long before washing and 4 inches after. So if it shrinks a quarter inch per four inches of width then it'll end up being between 17 and 18 inches wide, so it won't be TOO square, will it?

I think I have plenty of yarn - I have 3 skeins left and I've done 21 pattern repeats with the first 3 skeins, and I'm not done with the 3rd skein, so I should have plenty left to do 17 more, right?

So then it becomes a question of whether the relative squareness of the blanket and the fear that it will shrink more than expected bothers me more than the idea of prolonging this project by 5 more repeats. 5 is not that many (the repeats are only 4 rows, only one of which takes any brainpower whatsoever) and I still have at least a month before the shower, which they haven't given us a date for yet...

It is entirely possible that I worry too much. I probably should just go ahead and do the extra 5 and that way the only thing that can go wrong is I run out of yarn.

Since I know someone is probably thinking it, no, it wouldn't be the end of the world if the blanket were square, but a) it isn't what I set out to do and that always bothers me 2) I fear it would look like a giant washcloth.

I took a break from it last night and turned the heel on the second starry night sock. Woo hoo! The end is in sight! But my least favorite part lies ahead - picking up stitches.

There is just something about picking up stitches that I have never really gotten. I'm not sure what it is. Also? No matter how many stitches I pick up I always have a gap at the gusset - but only on one side. On the side where I start picking up at the heel and work toward the instep, I'm okay. On the side where I start at the instep and work towards the heel - I have a gap. EVERY. STINKIN'. TIME. I cannot convey the depth to which this VEXES ME.

So I quit once I had the heel turned since it was late at night anyway and picking up stitches at that point would only have been asking for trouble. Now I am stuck between working on the baby blanket or picking up stitches. On the one hand, the blanket is a) cotton and b) the same thing over and over and over again for five more miles. On the other, I hate picking up stitches.

You know that laceweight shawl I was working on at Christmas is still sitting in my drawer...

I'm actually thinking about...making a second blanket. One of the ladies in my church was thrilled to welcome her first grandson into the world the week before Easter. The poor little guy is now destined to be in the hospital for a month with a staph infection. Tell me he doesn't need a blankie.

You know, I did get the yarn for this blanket before I knew whether Andrea was having a boy or a girl so it would be just fine for a boy...Maybe I am meant to give something else to her little one. I'll have to ponder this.

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