Tag Archives: ripping

“Last Night Allison” Strikes Again

You all remember the last time Last Night Allison struck.  It wasn’t pretty. I mean, I managed to fix it, but it was touch and go for a while, and way more difficult than I expected it to be.

Unfortunately, Last Night Allison struck again.  But here’s the worst part.  I have no excuse for my bad decisions.  It wasn’t late (actually it was about 3:00 in the afternoon).  I hadn’t been drinking (except a cup of decaffeinated tea).  And, I really should have been paying attention.

I was starting the prototype of a sweater I’m working on.  The pattern begins with (spoiler!) a 1×1 rib for about 2 inches.

This is what I knit:Allison, that’s not a 1×1 rib!  That’s a 2×2 rib!  That’s a 2×2 rib that you worked on for about three hours before realizing your mistake!  (There was swearing.)

So, then, I had to decide, do I rip out the whole thing?  Start over?  Or, do I painstakingly go through with a crochet hook and change half the knits to purls, and half the purls to knits?

I bet you can’t guess what Last Night Allison chose.  (That’s right!  She picked the most fiddly and difficult choice possible.)I ripped each column of stitches out, one by one, carefully picking them back up in the proper orientation.  Which is totally not a super annoying process.  Ha!Amazingly, the fixed ribbing actually looks pretty good- I was afraid it would be a little wonky, but it looks OK.The only problem is I’ve still got well over halfway to go.  I think my “quick fix” is going to end up taking longer than re-knitting the whole thing would have.  Of course, at this point I’ve sunk too much effort into it, so I’m here for the long haul.What would you have done?  Would you have ripped the whole thing and re-knit, or do you have agreed with Last Night Allison?  Or, do you have a magical solution that would have been better than either?

From the Back of a Galloping Jackass

I am a total perfectionist.  Guilty.

“But wait,” you say.  “I’ve seen typos and mistakes on this blog, and that one post has the wrong pictures, and I’m pretty sure that the third sentence in the second paragraph in your fifth post used the subjunctive mood where you should have used the indicative.”

To which I say,  “Oh crap, let me go back and fix that.”

When it comes to knitting, I’m even worse.  I am merciless with my knitting.  I’ll unravel an entire sweater if I don’t like how a cast-on edge is laying.  It drives my husband nuts.  He’ll shudder and yell “No!” when he sees me start to frog* a project.  But, if I know a project is so messed up, ill-fitting, or just plain wrong to wear on a regular basis, I have no trouble ripping up a project and re-knitting it until it’s perfect.

I do have a rule about when it is necessary to frog a project, though (although if you ask my husband, he’d probably say that I can’t finish a project without ripping it out at least once).  This gem of wisdom was given to me by a little old German lady who owned the knitting shop near my college campus, and I still use it today:

   “If it can’t be seen from the back of a galloping jackass, you don’t need to fix it.”

-Brigitte (I forgot her last name) circa 2008

Practically, this means that if the mistake isn’t big, doesn’t affect the overall fit of the garment, or falls outside of the most visible areas of the garment (for example, in the armpit of a sweater), you can leave the mistake be.

Unless you are dumb and a perfectionist like me.



*Frog-knitterspeak for unraveling a piece of knitting, because you “rrrip-it, rrrip-it.”  A dumb term, but don’t blame me.  I didn’t make it up.