Thursday, May 13, 2010

Joys of Spring and Knitting SOS

Here is the mama robin, watching carefully as we photograph her family. (She's the one who built the untidy nest from a few posts ago.)
They're growing up fast. It looks like a jumble of feathers and beaks. She started out with three eggs, and we can't tell if she has two or three babies.
The rhododendron is looking well. Larry has been working very hard in the garden.
Don't laugh. We actually needed mittens the last few days. April was much warmer than May has been. Now you knitters, I need some help. The instructions were free from Ravelry, and perhaps not quite as clear as a beginner like me needs. As you can see, my thumbs have gotten better with practice, but they still need work. I was knitting along happily, finishing the cuff and increasing for the thumb gusset.

The next part left me uncertain. It says, "K2, CO5st, place 9 stitches on a stitch holder and knit to the end of the round." Does this mean I knit two, cast on 5 stitches, and put the next nine on the holder, or include the two plus five I was just working with? That's how I did it the first three times, but each time it didn't seem right, although I like the location of the thumb, and it reverses nicely so the left and right mittens are interchangeable, which is always a convenience.

I went to the Stitch Clique at the library Tuesday evening, and one person there suggested that maybe the CO5st actually means to cast off. The mittens are already fairly narrow, so I don't think that's the case. When I cast on the five and then keep knitting around I end up with an opening in addition the the thumb opening I already had. For all three so far I have just used a yarn needle and yarn and sewed the opening closed. I know for sure that's not the way to do it.

Suggestions welcome! I'm getting close to the next thumb opening.

Many many thanks, mainly for caring enough to read this even if you don't care a whit about knitting. LOL.


The Gingerbread House said...

Hi knitter :o)...the instructions are always clear (once we understand them :o)....find the page that tells you what abbreviations and or symbols mean..Try what you think it is may be right..sometimes that makes it clear...or with my permission ask "Jilly" :o) Ginny

Jodie said...

Knitting !!! Its a whole other language.

Suzanne said...

Oh dear wish I could help but I am only knit plain, knit pearl person.
Wow exciting that the baby birds have hatched they will grow and fly away soon.

ladydi said...

Ginny, in this case there is no page of abbreviations - it was just a free download from As you said, once we know what they're telling us, it's crystal clear. Until then I'm in muddy waters. CO did mean cast on at the beginning when it said to CO 33 stitches, so I can't imagine that the same letters would later mean cast off as the gal at the library suggested.

You said it, Jodie!

It's been fun watching the birds, Suzanne! Pretty soon they're going to outgrow that nest. :>}

The Gingerbread House said...

Ladydi, that CO5 does mean cast on 5 stitches...if you add the two ..that only gives you seven and not nine!..a comma, always mean that's it ...(K2,)
Also the same letters do not stand for Cast off!.. Can you ask the person who gave the pattern on Ralvary to explain it further? There also may be others that are confused.....Ginny

ladydi said...

A huge thank you to Miss Ginny who sent me a link to a tutorial where the mysteries of thumb making are very clearly explained. :>} Blog friends are the best! Wait until I start socks!!

Daisy said...

I'm so glad Ginny could help you, Diana, because I didn't have a clue. I loved your baby bird and flower pictures though. :D

Lucy Locket-Pocket said...

Crumbs! I'm also glad Ginny solved the problem because I wouldn't have been able to either! But what struck me most was the photo of your robin - they are so amazingly different to what we call robins over here and it reminds me of when my brother (a wildlife cameraman) was working for a company who were doing the wildlife filming for a re-make of The Secret Garden. Now there must have been some American colleagues involved because I remember my bemused brother saying "they want me to film some huge blackbird sized bird for a robin!!" :o) It's always made me smile!

You probably already know what ours look like but here's a link just in case!

Lucy xxx

ladydi said...

Thanks, Daisy! Daisy lives just across the state of Ohio from me, so we pretty much see the same birds and flowers on our daily walks. It's fun!

Lucy, I had no idea our robins are different from yours. I went to the link you shared, and yours are darling! Yours has the red face and breast on a smaller, cuter bird. Ours is a pretty big bird with an orange breast going much further down, but a darker face. Does the color robin's egg blue mean the same in the UK? Here it's a lovely aqua color. I'll tell you, this blogging is very educational!