Monday, March 12, 2012

When The Going Gets Tough....

The tough finish an easy scarf:
and start a new sweater:
This is going to be a cotton tank top, and I would be providing a link to the pattern if I weren't such a nice person.  It's a free pattern, and it's always nice when people decide to share their work for free with the world.  I get that.  And it's a cute tank top, which I also appreciate.  BUT the stated gauge is 5.3 stitches to the inch using the pattern stitch.  5.3 stitches to the inch is insane enough, and generally no one does that, but the pattern has a double decrease separated by the 2 YOs by 5 stitches, which pulls the knitted stitches to a diagonal to form a wavy edge.  So....our gauge is now 5.3 stitches over a wavy pattern, and if one just measures the stitches themselves, they are at an angle and don't accurately represent the width of the stitches.  The solution?  Knit for a while, slide all 180+ stitches onto a piece of yarn and measure to make sure that the darn thing will come reasonably close to fitting some part of my body.  If this were anything but a tank top done in the round AND I weren't already 2 sweaters behind for the year, I wouldn't even attempt this pattern.  So, I'm sure you'll understand why I would attempt a pattern that I'm unwilling to inflict on my friends.

Yesterday we got the machines and chords all tracked down and plugged in (except for one surge protector that is still MIA), and decided that the $30 sewing tables are the perfect opportunity to test design ideas for the future "real" furniture.  Idea number one:
serger thread cone storage under the serger.  Originally I was thinking about having storage drawers on this end, but what do I use when I'm using the serger?  Thread, tweezers, a brush, needles, the tiny wrench for changing needles, and machine oil.  So far, that's it.  On a REALLY rare occasion I change feet, but that's so rare that they don't need to be near the machine.  Everything else could be in a single sleeve, bag, or cup.  So maybe this will work better than a drawer after all.  Andy also has a great idea for a storage slot under the table for long skinny things--my yardstick, my tube of blocking wires, my ironing sleeve.  I think that will be really handy, and since the furniture is just particle board and two by four boards, we can try anything, and if it doesn't work, we just take it off and try something else.  I think it will be about 2 years before we can get to the real furniture, so we'll have lots of time to experiment and take notes.  Why didn't we think of this sooner?