"Don't wish me happiness I don't expect to be happy all the time....It's gotten beyond that somehow. Wish me courage and strength and a sense of humor. I will need them all." Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Why Purl???

I finished the super easy baby sweater and in case your wondering where the pattern is - it is somewhere between the real and the invisible world. I had a baby cardigan on my needles but have since unwound it. I'd gone an inch or two past the border before it reminded me of my purling distaste.

EZ in her book Knitter's Almanac has this to say. ".....I want to make my position clear. The avoidance of purling where possible has given me the reputation of hating it, which is not strictly true. Purling has its place, and a useful one. Without it, many beautiful stitch patterns would be impossible....however for many people purling is slower than knitting...one is happy to go to the trouble of purling, no matter how one performs it, when it has a function, and a pretty and visible effect but why purl it you don't have to?"

I have another gripe. My knitting is generally loose and my purling even looser. Should I really switch to smaller needles every second row? Talk about taking the j for joy out of knitting. If you have a similar problem it is most evident if you have ever knit a sweater in the round to the neck and then because it is a v or a crew neckline you switch to purling every second row. If your like me your knitting makes an obvious looser transition where the purling alternate rows begins. Grrrr. Of course what yarn you use can also enhance this undesirable effect. Wool is more forgiving and you can block it out but acrylic you cannot. And don't be one of those purists and tell me I should be avoiding acrylic. Acrylic like purling has its place. Unless you use the expensive superwash wool you are in trouble as the nice little gift you just spent hours on given to the non wool fan will end up either a shrunken disaster in the washing machine and if it survives there due to the luck of a cold water bath it will die of heatstroke in the dryer. Acrylic also takes good care of the the wool complainers but I have digressed. The long and short of it is I am making test swatches to determine how I will knit this acrylic cardigan in the round. Here's a little hint - the word begins with s. I can't possibly not sign off this morning before mentioning that as the earth is bathed in the premonitions of light the chickadees are singing!

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