Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The early spring of my discontent.

Warmer weather has hit here. Meaning a new herd of carpet beetles. The husbeast is also on alert (he thinks 'closet full of wool' and sees dollar signs being nibbled up), and we've agreed - we think they're coming in through the doors and windows, not living in here. (Which is what we figure for most of the other bugs we get, so okay. Valid theory. Or else we're in denial. Either way.) Friday is payday and I'm investing heavily in lavender, lavender oil, and all-natural (with lavender oil) soap. I think soap rubbed around a door frame will be effective, especially if repeated every once in a while. Lavender sachets and oil diffusers will help, too.

And arson. I WANT TO TORCH THE LITTLE BASTARDS! Whoops, did I type that out loud?


I know I'm really home again. Sekhmet bit me this morning. I'd had the audacity to interrupt her nap (she was sleeping on my lap and I moved). Fucker.


Okay, someone Australian clue me in on the whole yarn weight thing. Because y'all aren't tracking my logic, or I'm not tracking yours. (I assume this is entirely my American problem, but I'm whining anyway.)

So. Bells and I swapped for yarn ages ago, and last year I knit it up into a sweater for my father-in-law. It was Bendigo Woolen Mills, eight ply. EIGHT. All right. I knit it up with size eight/5 mm needles. I get this. I'm with you.

For the new, Setesdalish jumpers, I wanted something lighter, and figured the step down to five-ply was the way to go. This would, I THOUGHT, take me down to a size five/3.75 mm needle, which would work nicely. I wasn't basing this on ply=needle size, but wraps per inch, and sport weight = five ply comments over on Ravelry, and all that rot. Yuh. About that. I got out the five-ply last night for some swatches, and KEPT GOING DOWN NEEDLE SIZES. And down. And down. And cursing. And, finally, settled on size three/3.25 mm needles to knit this stuff up. SIZE THREE. There is no way in hell I can NOT knit this yarn up into Christmas presents. The husbeast will murder me in my bed if I say "oh, whoops", toss it into The Pit and order more. I am COMMITTED TO THIS YARN. (And need committed, yes, thank you.)

Good thing I'm starting now, because apparently I will be KNITTING TWO EXTRA-LARGE SWEATERS ON SIZE THREE NEEDLES!!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAH!

(On the other hand, super-small needles almost guarantees I'll have enough yarn left over for another Setesdal jersey for me. If I can stand to knit three of them.)


amy said...

I vote for denial. I thought ants were "coming in" too. I put stuff around the door frames, too. The reason I saw them around the door frames is because they were using the moldings as their superhighway.

I want to torch the fuckers, too. I hate winter, hate it, look forward to warmer weather, and what does that bring? Fucking bugs. Nothing brings out the potty mouth like the bugs, I tell you.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I howled at this! Certainly have been there, boy oh boy.


The bugs haven't been roused from their winter stupor here in NY, yet...

Rose Red said...

Hmm, that's interesting. We'd normally knit 8ply on 4mm sticks and 5ply would normally be knit on 3.5mm or 3.75mm sticks. I've never used the Bendi 5ply though. Bells has though so am sure she will let you know.

Bells said...

RoseRed is right. I have used it! My steeked jacket was in 5ply and the whole thing was on 3.75mm needles (explains why I have oodles of them in different lengths!). Are you a particularly loose knitter? That's the only way I can figure you'd have to go down that small.

nanacindynz said...

the normal needles are
8 ply = dk weight = 4mm,
5 ply = aussie sportweight = 3.75 and 4 ply = fingering weight = 3.25mm needles.

i haven't knitted with Bendigo wools but i have knitted with patons which i think is the same thing but rebranded.... good luck with the sweater... you can do it! seriously

Amy Lane said...

Oh shit. That's all I gots for you on the 'sport weight thing'-- uhm, either combine two strands together (uhm, 10 ply?) or, uhm, oh-shit.

And the lavender sounds like a good idea!

Jacquie said...


Alwen said...

Ha ha ha ha. Size 3 needles. You are teh crazy.

Dang ants! Sunday we bought a bag of dog chow and let it sit on the floor next to the Rubbermaid bin for a couple of hours before heaving it up and pouring it in.

When I picked it up, there where about eleventeen million grease ants under there AND IN THE BAG!

Stupid 60 degree F weather, GO. AWAY.

Oh, so then it did and now it's 18 F here.

And my verification word is "springst"!

Leonie said...

Just to add a bit of fun.
I regularly knit 5 ply on 3.25mm needles and have since forever. All my old ball bands suggest 3.25 and the new ones suggest 3.75. 5ply is MUCH closer to 4ply (fingering, 3.25mm) than 8ply (DK, 4mm needles), sorry :-(

Also struck me as curious that you knit the 8ply on 5mm, way too loose in my hands.

Doubling it would make it thicker but then you may not have enough....

Maybe ask Bendigo for reason as to why needle size wasn't mentioned on web pages, or was it?

JennHall said...

David Reidy spoke a bit about the difference in yarn-weight descriptions on a recent podcast -- "Bloom Where You're Planted," I think. It wasn't the essay, but more discussing how when he says "ply", he isn't necessarily referring to how many strands are spun together to make yarn.

I have no insight of my own.

Donna Lee said...

That sounds like pure and simple hell (with pink ribbon).

Roxie said...

I'm with Amy - Double it up and save your hands. And MAN those will be heavy warm sweaters!

Ann said...

I'm glad you decided to organize Sock Roulette! This is my first swap, and it's been a blast.

I always have issues with figuring out yarn weight. I haven't quite internalized what various gauges correspond to yet--I'm sure that'll come with time. But it sucks that your yarn isn't what you were expecting.

Good luck with your beetles!

Roz said...

Can't help you with the bugs-- we've only had a day or two of properly warm weather, and now snow's back in the forecast in DC.

That said -- the cat is shedding everywhere. THAT is making me insane.

As for the lavender -- the house will smell great, yah?

And that brings me to my word for the day... scensum.

historicstitcher said...

Remember the gansey? I knit that thing on 3mm needles. In size big.

I had nicknamed it the "never-ending torso sock" for the rounds and rounds of sock-sized knitting.

It's do-able, but not always fun. But the thin, warm sweater at the end is worth every bit of it.

And it took me over 200 hours to knit it. He calculated it out one day.