Monday, February 27, 2006

On to Beijing!

Well, I definitely didn't win a gold medal at these Knitting Olympics. As of the closing ceremonies yesterday, I had completed the left half of the jacket and the right sleeve. I plan to take my time finishing it off, and to intersperse it with some other projects over the next 2 weeks or so.

The Rainbow Jacket was definitely a fun project, and I'm glad I started it - I had had the kit for 4 years and never really got anywhere with it. However, it definitely wasn't the best choice for me. I'm not a terribly fast knitter, and this project had far too much volume for someone like me. It also gets terribly monotonous once you finish the first sleeve, so it was (and still is!) hard to stay interested and motivated.

Overall, though, this was definitely a positive experience. I had fun watching other knitters' progress, and watching some exciting sports on TV. When I finish, I'll have a neat looking jacket to brighten up my wardrobe, and enough yarn left over for another, smaller project. This experience also helped me learn that my eyes are definitely bigger than my fingers, and that I should try to get a better sense of the volume involved in a project before committing to a deadline (though I do love the sound deadlines make as they fly by!).

Pictures tomorrow, and updates as I continue along towards the belated end.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Today's Photo

Olympic Knitting progress as of this morning. Sorry for the dark photo, but there isn't much natural light in my living room at 7:00 am. :)

At this point, I'm 10 rows shy of completing this half of the jacket. I had hoped to power through and finish last night, but I was just too tired. So, today I will knit these last few rows, and then start on the second half of the jacket.

Obviously, I have no hope of completing this by Sunday afternoon. I've decided that I'll keep going until then, and then take a break from this project for a few days. I'm enjoying it, but the knitting is pretty monotonous and the yarn can be a bit frustrating at times. I calculated last night that there are about 60,000 stitches in each half of this jacket, and it'll take me about 50 hours to complete each half. This is definitely the biggest knitting projected I've ever taken on, and I'll be glad when it's finally complete. I think my overall goal is to be done by March 15th so it'll be available to wear as the weather gets warmer.

Photo Update II

More Olympic Knitting photos:

Day 6 progress, cruising toward the collar.

Day 7, with another full color section done.

Day 9 (no day 8 photo, sorry). In this picture you can see the effects of the shadow technique quite nicely.

Day 10 - I've divided to knit the collar, and am now working on the front half.

Day 11 - just a few rows shy of casting off the front half.

Day 12 - I've finished the front half, and have moved on to completing the back.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Photo Update

Finally, some photos of my Olympic Knitting progress.

End of Day One:

Cuff, and one color band done.

End of Day Two:

First set of sleeve increases done.

End of Day Three:

Second set of sleeve increases done, and body increases done.

End of Day Five (yup, no Day Four photo, sorry):

Continuing with the body; first color band done, second color band in progress.

The Day Five photo is where I was before I started knitting last night; I'll post a pic of last night's progress tomorrow or over the weekend.

At this point it seems pretty clear to me that I have no hope of finishing on time; I estimate that it'll take me between 5 and 7 days to finish the left half of the jacket (it takes about an hour to knit each 4-row repeat, there are 5 repeats per color band, and I have 5 1/2 bands to go), and then there's still the right half. I am not a fast knitter.

Oh, and sorry for the crappy photos. This thing is almost impossible to photograph well.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Olympic Update

Well, I'm chugging along on my Rainbow Jacket. I plan to post pictures of my progress when I get home this evening. So far, I've completed the left sleeve and body increases, and I'm a few rows into the body of the jacket. This is where the long haul starts, with over 150 320-stitch rows to complete the half.

As much as I'm enjoying this project (and I'll be glad to finally complete the kit I bought 4 years ago), I'm wishing a little that I had picked a more technically challenging project, not one that was simple but with a large volume. More Process than Product, I guess. However, I'm absolutely going to keep going, and will just try to get as far as I can before the closing ceremonies.