UndyedYarnpire’s Fiber Opera

October 11, 2009

I am not a Pharoah, but I am king of the Tut tuts.

Filed under: discussion — UndyedYarnpire @ 12:29 am

I interacted with Wendy Johnson. She was really nice and actually responded. Of course it was mostly nice things I was saying. I am trying to keep with that nonsense where no one ever says anything negative. Of course I was inspired to write because I discovered the errata page which affects the socks I have on my needles right now.

Honestly, if the book had been printed correctly, I would not have bought it.  That is what irritates me about knitting pattern books, they always have mistakes, and frequently the mistakes are crucial.  Wendy Johnson’s patterns were the ones where I finally “got it” in terms of making socks. As much as I like having all the techniques consolidated in one place, and as much as I like the stitch motifs for several socks in the book, I would not have bought the book if I had known there was extra purling required.

I am going to be frogging my (modified) Serpentine Socks.

But I said nice things about her book, including that I had bought my own copy after looking at the library’s. I said I appreciated the errata page, which I do; I just wish it had been up months ago.


Today I was investigating the Simple Faroese Shawl (supposedly by Cathy Chestnut, but it has the same formatting and layout as things I get from Susan at Susan’s Spinning Bunny). The pattern normally sells for $1 (but I seem to remember it costing more). It is a single side of a single page, and it is exactly a garter stitch triangle shawl with a paragraph about making selvage edges. Now, it has one row of fanciness (yo,k2tog;  just like how it looks in the picture) so it does not actively violate a copyright, but seriously, where does anyone get off selling a pattern to a garter stitch triangle?

[eta: I am not the only one who thinks this, I found a generic shawl recipe while looking for real Faroese shawls: http://wendyknits.net/archives/613 ]

What irritates me is that it is claiming to be the shaped kind of shawl that will actually stay on your shoulders, but there is no possible way that is true. I have made a number of triangle shawls (Lion Brand’s Homespun yarn had it on the wrapper when I started knitting, the same type of shawl, starting from the center neck even, though theirs had a lot more fancy rows and was stockinette based.)  Triangle shawls do not stay on.


I mentioned to Wendy Johnson that I usually made triangle shawls with extra center lines. She is now knitting 4/6 of a hexagonal shawl. I had not realized there were hexagonal shawls. I bet that would actually stay on. I hope that I was an inspiration. Her idea is definitely original. My apparent muse tendencies might be coincidental, but I am egotistical enough to think I shifted her paradigm by sending an email.

I wish I trusted pattern designers to actually do their jobs. Since I have not bought a stand-alone pattern ever, I find myself wondering if they are as riddled with errata as the books are. It is difficult to tell whether the patterns I received as part of this fiber club have errors, since I have had very little interest in knitting them.  I can say that the layout and detail has left a lot to be desired though.

I really do not want to buy one of these download patterns. So far 100% of all the knitting patterns I have made from patterns in books have had errors. It appears that almost all designers of stand-alone patterns require payment via Paypal.  I can barely print at home.  Overall that seemed like a bad combination: potentially dodgy product, known dodgy payment service, having to sit in front of my computer to use the product.

I finished the tam/beret I was making. It looks horrible. Flat, smooth top; nice fabric drape for a hat; nice stitches throughout the field; colorful, non-pooling, easy-to-knit yarn. When I tried it on, the hat stands straight up. It will not flop over.  The colors, which look like a mountain meadow over-filled with wildflowers, ended up looking more particolored. Basically it looks like a bursting cylinder of circus-colored vomit.  I have not yet decided whether to frog or find someone whose skin will tolerate adjacency to a stomach full of mustard and cotton candy and “grape” bubblegum.

I will most assuredly post pictures.


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