Finishing Blahs

I have the finishing blahs … I can’t seem to get myself to finish anything this past week. I have 2 pairs of socks in progress, but can’t seem to get motivated to finish them. I have about one bobbin left to go on my colored rovings (of the 11 ounces), and can’t seem to get into the rhythm for finishing it. Then, there’s the Pi Shawl.

I keep coming up with excuses for not working on these. The weather is too nice. I’ll just sit out side on the back deck. You’d think that I can take one of those projects out on the back deck with me, don’t you? Nope. Can’t do that. I pick stuff up, can’t concentrate, and put it back down.

I keep thinking of new projects that I’d like to be working on. Dangerous train of thought. I can just imagine if I started everything I wanted to start and get to the home stretch and leave them all hanging. I have enough unfinished projects without that.

intarsia samplerOn the same vein … I took an intarsia class last week. It’s something that has always eluded me. I always seem to have those gaps at the color changes because I can’t remember which way to twist the yarn. Well, the class solved that for me. Just a simple little mantra … “old over, new under”. That’s it. So simple. 3 hours for one mantra.

But now I think I need to practice it and get it ingrained in my head. So, guess what? A new project. Besides, there’s that 10% off class coupon burning a hole in my pocket. I’m thinking a small, quick project. And this looks fun. It seems that I suddenly have lots of little ones of varying sizes to knit stuff for.

Then there’s the new Spin-Off that just arrived in the mail this week. This is the second issue that has projects for knitting with rovings. This one has some beautiful felted bowls that were made by knitting colored rovings into giant bowls and then tossing them into the washing machine.

Knitted Tote using unspun rovingsI’ve been wanting to make myself a felted bag, so I thought … why not use rovings instead of yarn? After all, I had a blast with knitting that shawl from the silk cap. So, off to the store I went. 1+ pound of colored rovings of several different colors later, I started a felted tote from Simple Knits. I’m hoping that this will bust the finishing blahs since it’s difficult to put down those rovings.

There are a few things that I’m finding out about working with wool rovings. First, use a diz to make your rovings into an even size. This is much easier than using your eye and feel to get the roving into a consistent size for knitting. Even so, you’ll still get some thick and thin spots. It shouldn’t matter too much once you felt the object. We’ll see.

Second important learning experience … You may need to change the way you hold your yarn when you knit. It’s definitely not for speed knitting. I found that I had to change my knitting from picking to throwing, while holding the yarn in my right hand lightly. Otherwise, my normal tension of the yarn in my hand was causing the roving to pull apart. By throwing, I have almost no tension on the roving as I place it around the needle.

Once I’ve made these observations, it’s kind of fun. The photo shows a ball of rovings that’s already been pulled through the diz once. I found that it was still too thick to get the effect that I wanted, so I’m pulling it through the diz again before I knit it up.

Word of caution here … the next ball of rovings, I may pull it all through to the right size before knitting. The weight of the diz can be heavy enough to break the rovings. Remember, these things are delicate. There is absolutely nothing, apart from friction, holding all those fibers together!

Have fun!