Monday, 15 October 2018

Bloody Knitting!

I have lost my knitting mojo. I can't find it anywhere: I have looked under sofa, in the yarn cupboard, amongst my pattern books but I just can't seem to get anything going. The last good thing I knit was finished at the start of September ready for Little M's ninth birthday.

The Good
The pattern is from Sirdar which is made with Sirdar wash n wear. This is a synthetic yarn but good for regular washing, especially children's wear. This is the third time I have knit this cardigan, it is one of my favourite patterns. Each patterned section gives an air of satisfaction before moving onto the next. The body is knit in one piece to the armholes and then divided so there is limited sewing up at the end. She had it for her Birthday and was really pleased with it, sparkly buttons and all.

The Bad
That was the good news, now for the bad. I have been trying to knit the Beatnik sweater since last Autumn. I chose some wool I knew would be warm for winter and didn't pill. Drops Nepal is a great value yarn which my mum made my Aftur sweater in. Aftur is now the only winter jumper I have so I wanted another one. 

The agony of thinking I was getting the hang of it only to find there was a mistake in the first rope cable on the left annoyed me,  I let it go, but as I progressed I spotted that the lattice cables on the left were all going over the top not dipping underneath. I painstakingly unpicked 16 rows stitch by stitch but couldn't get it going again. I took the whole lot out back to the rib and tried again but after a week of evenings knitting and unpicking I decided that I had been beaten by the Beatnik. HELP! I need my mum. I have knit the back and am going to make a start on the sleeves. Maybe I can kick start it again when my brain is less cluttered. I actually realised on the second attempt that I was supposed to put the lattice in the centre and a rope either side - I mean, how wrong can you be??

I thought I could get my knitting mojo back by buying some new yarn but it was not the right gauge for the pattern I had in mind and it has no purpose at the moment other than taking space in the craft shelf but it is a keeper.

The Ugly
I eventually thought right, I am going to knit that long stripy garter stitch - knit every row while wathcing TV - scarf I promised for my brother but that turned out to the ugliest combination of colours I ever did see so I rolled it all back into balls.

After heading to the yarn cupboard for inspiration I came away with some hand dyed Araucania aran weight cotton. I knit a tension square and decided on a sweater I have wanted for a while. The green yarn above was what I initially wanted to use but it was DK. It is knitted cuff to cuff in one piece so I thought I would blend the variable dyed yarns across the work. It was all going so well and then I couldn't work out how to cast on for the body from the sleeves. I swore a lot and my mum was in Cardiff so I couldn't ask her. I stuffed it to the bottom of my basket. Another false start. AGHHGHHH!

I think I will just leave it for a while and see what happens. Life has been a bit hectic of late what with work, two houses and two children at two different schools - it is a wonder I can remember how to knit at all!

Any ideas? What should I do?
Jo xxxxx


  1. Jo, you are normal, haha. Frusrating though isn't it. Some of the best things I've knit have been with your ordinary priced dk wool. The worst was Debbie Bliss Rialto. Nasty splitty stuff. When hand washed it stretched....a lot ! Strangely it did go back to the right size once dried. Can't beat Sirdar and King Cole. DK.

  2. Leave it all for the time being and go back to it when you are not juggling so many things, it will all work out in the end.

  3. Oh bless you Jo. I know how you feel, I’ve been in a bit of a rut with most things just recently and I do think it has a lot to do with how much you are organising in your head. I have however finished a very simple knit and must now get in with a sweater I promised my sister, the trouble is I don’t seem to be able to settle into anything really. So heads up it’s not the end of the world and we do know in the end the mojo will come back it seems to make me feel so guilty though that I have so much knitting to do and not getting on with any of it.

  4. It's hard to find a groove sometimes with a craft. I go through phases where I hate everything I make, then something will go surprisingly well and the fire is under me again. Right now I'm somewhere in the middle! I love the lavender sweater you made for LS, the part with the ruffly effect (I have no idea what this is called, please forgive my knitting ignorance!) is really pretty and intricate. It looks so nice on her.

  5. Have you checked the understairs cupboards? My knitting mojo likes hiding there :-)

    I am not surprised you are beaten by the Beatnik: moss stitch, lattice cable and rope cable - it is not a winning combination for a relaxed evening knit for a tired mind. It is a lovely sweater though, I could be tempted, too. Could you leave out the lattice cables and just do one big middle cable? Or do away with the cable all together and make the middle of the Mailin sweater by Isabel Kramer (

    The Sublime yarn is very nice, lovely green shade. And I almost forgot to say how sweet the little purple cardigan is, sparkly buttons and all. xx

  6. Some things just need more focus and attention than others. Why not leave the cabled cardigan to some time when things are a bit more relaxed - like school holidays (if that is a relaxing time!) Sometimes things are as clear as mud and then after a break from them, it all makes sense. I find the reverse happens too when something I did before, I try and do again and for some reason like the stars not aligning for me, it all goes pear shaped this time round. Life can be strange sometimes.

    I would wait for your mum to get back from Cardiff and take it from there for the other jumper. When you have a fresh look at it, it will probably make more sense anyway. Wise move to stuff it in a corner for a while I think.

    I used to love my hand knits as a child, every one of them so I am sure your daughter will think of all of hers with a warm glow when she is older (and probably making her own).

    You pack an awful lot in to your life, I've no idea how you do it all.

  7. Oh sweetie it's not going well is it! The 2 school thing is very draining and it takes a while for everything to bed in, but it will, trust me. As for the knitting, I know you're knitting self so well and I can feel your frustration rolling down the hill. All I'm going to say is what did you learn from miette to use for beatnik? Sounds like a very similar challenge. Try using stitch markets and if it's a written pattern try dividing the different pattern sections for each line with a hilighter. It might help you visualise each pattern block better.

    Crack on with some Christmas presents and when your bored with 2 night wonders you might just be ready for something more meaty. Sending you guys. Michele x

  8. I'm sending you hugs not blooming guys!mx

  9. The cardigan for your daughter is so beautiful:)
    It is ok if you can't figure out with some patterns/yarns. Your mega projects of new house and parenting are going great. Fretting over on a certain project will add more to anxiety. Do what you feel is easy right now for relaxation and then challenge yourself later once you calm down. You mentioned once in your post to be kind to yourself. Such are the times we need to do that.

  10. I would slip stitches on to stitch holder cast on for front pick up stitches from stitch holder by knitting and the cast on for back?? Does that make sense? Xxx

    1. Phew! my mum read out the pattern and we did it in the end. I at least have one item I can pick up and knit in the evening without facing a disaster! Jo x

  11. The little blue cardigan is stunning. You have to give yourself a break you do so much so stop beating yourself up about things. Maybe if you have a little rest from these projects you can come back to them later. x

  12. So glad your mum came to your rescue! Megan's sweater is lovely!! And I look forward to seeing how you use your pretty new tweed yarn!!! xx

  13. I see i am late to comment but just had to have my say. I took more than a year off knitting, crochet just seemed to be the only thing I could do. It was a lot less stressful and seemed to be easier for my hands. My goal this year was to knit a sweater, I did and it helped with my mojo again. Still I have not flown back into knitting like I once did. I am back to crocheting a scarf. Just relax, your mojo will return.