Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Have I Said Lately That I Am Not-So-Much a Genius?

So, the mitered mitten pattern calls for a gauge of 4.5 stitches/inch, and knowing that I usually get 5 stitches per inch with worsted weights & size 7 needles, I opted to try size 8 needles.  I knit a little swatch, got out my ruler, found that I had just knit 4 stitches per inch, and said to myself, "Oh good, it will be just a little snug."

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What happened???  A week ago I swear I could do basic math & count and everything.  We get arctic temperatures and I start talking about knitting pastries & think that somehow 4 stitches per inch is smaller than 4.5 stitches per inch.

I hadn't realized that when people mention a "cold snap" that it referred to what happens to the brain when it gets cold.  I'm going to take my monster-sized mitten and go relearn the alphabet while hoping for spring......

7 comments:

(formerly) no-blog-rachel said...

Ummm...how about making them slightly felted mittens? Then you could be all 'oh I made 'em big on purpose so I could felt 'em!'...

SpongebobTanu said...

what no-blog-rachel said. if the the wool is feltable, maybe do a light felt - that'll make them windproof too!

tinebeest said...

I was just about to mention felting. Not that I have any experience, of course :-)

RobinH said...

See, I'm not going to suggest you felt them. I'm going to mention that I have large hands, and they're really pretty!

(Which is not to say that felting isn't a good idea--it's one I mean to try myself one of these days, as I think it will make for a nice warm mitten.)

RobinH said...

And I think the math problem is obvious: 4 is a smaller number than 4.5-- if you were converting to inches, you'd say it's 1/4 (0.25) inches per stitch vs 1/4.5 (0.22)inches per stitch. Since the # of stitches wind up in the denominator, the size goes down as the number of stitches goes up. So on a quick glance, your intuition says 'larger is bigger', and if you don't stop and replace the gut response with learned facts (stitch gauge has an inverse relationship with size), you'll be led astray. It's an easy mistake to make. I did it myself swatching for a sweater last year.

Daniele said...

LOL - I was thinking the same thing as you were working it out, until I saw the mitten!! One mitten..... to rip, or not to rip? That is the question..... :)

toni in florida said...

Um, yeah, what RobinH said... the math stuff, I mean. I would never try to cadge those lovely mitts from you, not in a million years. Really. It wouldn't be nice at all of me, now would it? Especially when it's far colder where you are than here. And when you can lightly felt them for even more weather resistance. And when you've been craving mitts. So there. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.