The “F” Word

No, I’m not talking about that “F” word, though that one did get used a bit yesterday as well. I’m talking about the “Finished” “F” word. You know, where you are approaching the end of a looooong project, and you are merrily grafting along on 125 stitches, thinking cockily to yourself, “I’ll be Finished with this one soon!” I just wonder what I’ll knit next!”

In my defense, I actually did finish that looooonnnnngg grafting row on Langsjal Jóhönnu yesterday. I was about to pull out the last two lifelines when I decided to look it over first. I gave a simple little tug to even out some stitches, and the yarn snapped, unzipping about three inches of the grafting seam in the center. Really, I wasn’t tugging hard, not even as hard as this puppy will get tugged around during the blocking. I think my grafting was much too tight, so it would have needed to be redone anyway.

After the first horrified thought of running to the back yard and lighting the whole mess on fire, I took a careful look at it.

I fiddled with it a bit, trying to get those unzipped stitches corralled on needles, then decided that the whole seam would need to be redone anyway, and just undid the length of it.

That’s the big mess, off the needles. I frogged the bigger piece back to the lifeline, and got it back on a needle without too much swearing (giving thanks about every two stitches that I hadn’t ripped out the lifelines). The smaller end piece was a different story. I hadn’t bothered with a lifeline when I did this one, and I kept unravelling row after row, trying to get to a row where I could actually identify stitches to get on the needle. This whole section was a mess of double yarn-overs and  Sl-K2-psso’s, and I finally gave up and just ripped the whole thing out.

Ahem. There might have been a few f-words heard along with this one, too. John was smart enough to leave the room and go watch the basketball game during this part. (Go ‘Heels!*)

I reknit the last 15 rows or so of the big section. This time I placed a lifeline on the second to the last row, so if I have to do this again, I’ll only be a row short. I tried out a new-to-me trick with the lifeline. The Options needles have a tiny hole at the base of the needle, which is used with a tiny tool to tighten the needle on the cable. If you run your lifeline through this little hole, then knit the row, it pulls the line through the stitches as you go.

That hole is really tiny, but I use waxed dental floss (Glide Original!) for my lifelines, and you can smoosh the end of it so it will go right through. Note that if you use stitch markers along the row, this method of threading a lifeline through the stitches won’t work, as your line will also end up through the markers.

I didn’t invent this method, by the way. I’ve seen it several other places, but Fleegle has several links for how to do this here. She even drilled holes in some of her other circular needles to make this possible.

Then I cast on a whole bunch of stitches, and started the second end over.

Thirty rows to go, then another lifeline, then I’ll try that grafting again. Loosely, this time.

*Yes, I married a Carolina boy. He made me learn the Tarheels Fight song before he would marry me.


The “F” Word — 23 Comments

  1. Ach! I feel your pain. 🙁
    I am very proud of you, though, for doing all this right away, or you may have been tempted to just let the shawl sit there for a while and found it hard to get back to it. It seems that the worst part is over. Good luck with the new grafting!

  2. Oh. Lord.
    That’s not just scary, that’s a whole grafting horror show! Kudos to you for forging ahead and getting it under control!

  3. Ooh so sorry. But you did enjoy knitting this right?
    And knitting is always a good thing.
    And you did have the life lines, so there’s that.
    We live and learn.
    It still looks beautiful and the peeps go well with it.
    I learned to always put my last enralac square on a stitch holder. I put my FPS shawl aside to do my Christmas projects last year. When I picked it back up, some of the stitches had slid off the needle. And had slithered down, down, down. I was so devastated that I put it aside, after grabbing what stitches I could, until I could wrap my brain around it.
    These things happen to all of us. Makes us better knitters cause we have to re-knit now and again.

  4. Wow–regrafting 125 stitches. Just closing a sock toe makes me break out into a sweat. I’ll just thank my lucky stars that I only have sleeves to reknit.

  5. Oh wow, that would have put me over the edge, I’m afraid! But I’m glad that you were able to fix it and carry on – now I can’t wait to see the finished piece.

  6. Oh my… that’s a bit of a horror story. I think I might break out in hives just thinking about it.
    So sorry. So so sorry. Don’t know what else to say other than I am sooooo sorry.

  7. Are those peeps? I think all of that would have driven me to eat peeps too, and I hate the darn things. I probably ought to check out the 1/2 price Easter candies to see if I can get some for hubby – he thinks they’re nectar of the gods. So, so sorry about your woes. I’m glad you had lifelines. I continue to thumb my nose at the fates and have never used them. Of course, it has come back to bite me on the butt on occasion. One thing that I’ve found to help in that situation is just to put one row on the needles the best I can and then tink back, one stitch at a time until I get a row I recognize. I know, a lifeline is so much better, but I seem to like doing things the hard way.

  8. Gack.
    I give you a great big knitters hoorah for getting right back to it – me? I probably would have thrown it in the corner for a few months..
    Fingers crossed all around that the next grafting goes smoothly

  9. Oh, I can’t believe it. What stress and trauma. But, you will appreciate the finished product even more, right?? Thank god for lifelines. The dental floss and little hole in the needle trick is fabulous. thanks for showing.

  10. Wow — tough fiance’! I can see his point, though — I’d have to look twice at someone who knows Vandy’s fight song!!

  11. That one is a true owie. I would have tossed it into indefinite frustrated time out until I could face it again.
    I really like the floss in the hole idea. Brilliant.

  12. Well done!
    If you used removable stitch markers like the safety-pin kind you could always remove and replace them without snagging the lifeline after finishing the row.

  13. Yikes!! Well at least you kept relatively calm and the end is back in sight – plus you had Peeps to fortify you! 🙂

  14. OMG! First, thankfully you survived without lighting the whole mess on fire. Second, thanks for the dental floss links. It makes perfect sense that it would be the perfect too for a lifeline! I can’t wait to see the FO now!
    As for the peeps….I only have a few pink bunnies remaining…..they are short lived around here….