Well, it had to happen. I've fallen prey to the Knitting Guild of America's Master Knitter program. Hopefully, the mental exercise involved in completing the projects will stave off Alzheimer's. If the first swatch is any indication, I may end up in the loony bin, instead. The first swatch is 2.5 inches of k2p2 rib, followed by an INVISIBLE increase of 5 stitches, followed by 4 inches of garter stitch. With the exception of the rib, I screwed up every part of this swatch, and ripped it apart so many times that the yarn is grubby. Too bad, though. I'm not doing it again just to get it clean.
What did I learn on Swatch 1?
The little stitch legs:
At least one thing that illustrates the reason beginning knitters should learn the basics before taking on this program: I learned which way the legs on a stitch go on the needle. Guess how I learned that? Yep--from ripping out and re-threading the needle through the stitches.
The invisible (or not) increase:
I also learned (again) how to do a m1 increase, and that if I place it on the second knit stitch of a k2p2 rib, it becomes mostly invisible. I learned this after discovering that my favorite increase (knitting into the front and back of a stitch) makes little purl bumps that are most definitely not invisible.
In attempting the m1 increase the first time, I grasped the truth of the statement that "you have to twist the bar in the middle as you knit into it, or else there will be a hole under the increase". Another thing that is not invisible--a row of little holes under the invisible increases.
The wrong stitch:
And finally (three days and approximately 6 hours of work after beginning) I learned that when the directions say "garter stitch", you should remember that, and not do 3.5 inches of stockinette. If you do, you'll be back to lesson #1--figuring out which way the little stitch legs go on the needle. I feel like the mouse in Laura Numeroff's If You Take A Mouse To School.
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