saturday’s beth brown-reinsel workshop


Better late than never, right?  Sorry it has taken me so long to get the workshop summary up, but it’s been a crazy week!  Monday I took Jakob out for some last minute shopping then that night I went out for dinner with the moms from the playgroup Jakob used to attend.  Almost everyone went back to work so we had to disband the playgroup, but it is still nice to see the moms and we try to arrange a dinner once a month. 

Tuesday I took Jakob to his first trial morning at daycare.  That’s right- he will be starting daycare next Monday!  It is so strange to think that he won’t be coming to work with me every day.  I had left him in his class last week when I brought him in to register, and he was fine.  This time he cried when I left and it was heartbreaking to see him pressing his little hand against the window like he was trying to will me to stay.  I only left him there for an hour, and he was fine by the time I got back, playing with the other kids and the toys.  That night I stayed home while Yannick went bowling but I spent the night knitting like crazy on Jakob’s costume and didn’t even get a chance to upload my photos from the weekend. 

Wednesday I brought Jakob back to daycare for a 2 hour visit.  He cried when I left but by the time I made it to the door I could hear that he’d stopped.  Yannick met me there when it was time to pick him up so he could see the school and meet Jakob’s teachers, and we were able to peek in on the class without being seen.  It was sweet to watch Jakob running around and interacting with the other kids.  I know next week will be different, since we have yet to leave him there for a meal or a nap, but I have hope that it will be an easy transition for him.  That night Yannick took me out for dinner for my birthday which was…uh…in September.  Yeah, we do things late around here.  After dinner we rented Forgetting Sarah Marshall which was a cute movie, although I have now seen parts of Jason Segal I never thought I’d see! 

Last night I was supposed to go to prenatal aquafitness but I wasn’t feeling well so I skipped it.  I’ve never heard of “third trimester nausea” but it seems that’s what I’ve got.  I had a few weeks, maybe even two months of feeling fine and now all of a sudden I’m nauseous daily and have started throwing up again too, instead of maybe once a week it has now been, on average, one to three times a day.

Today is Hallowe’en, and it was also Jakob’s last day at work.  He wore his costume all day and before leaving we went around to the other stores in the mall and said good bye to the friends he’s made there.  It will be really weird to not have him with me.  As frustrating as it can get, it made my day to be able to glance over and see him, or to have him come running up to give me a kiss and a cuddle.  Now I will only get evenings with him, and it makes me sad.  Not sad enough to keep him home with me, since I need him transitioned to daycare before the new baby comes, but sad nonetheless.

But I digress.  Trick-or-treating has been done, Yannick and I did our annual drive-around to look at decorations, and I now have a few minutes to post before I try to get an early night’s sleep.  On to the workshop!  I still haven’t photographed my knitting from the Sunday workshop, but I will try to do that tomorrow.  In the meantime, here is what happened on Saturday:

This is the progress I’d made by the time the class was over.  The yarn Maaike and I used is Sport by Briggs and Little, purchased from Robyn’s Nest.  If I remember correctly the workshop called for any sport weight yarn and a 3.75mm needle.

 Starting at the bottom, we learned a two-color cast on, we did a two-color half braid and then a solid-colored half braid, some scalloped lace, a few knit rows and purl ridges throw in to give each section some definition, knitted-in fringe, a braid I think was called the “Norwegian” braid, and then some colorwork.

This goes to show you the difference between two knitters.  Maaike and I used the exact same yarn and needles, and not only did our choices in color placement result in completely different-looking mittens, but you can see the difference in our gauges too.  Her mitten cuff is slightly wider than mine, and the section from the cast-on to the two-colored braid (above the fringe) has the same number of rows, yet hers is longer than mine.

I deliberately pushed myself to learn new techniques in the workshop, so when given the opportunity to work 3 colors in a row (instead of Fair Isle’s usual 2 colors), I took it.  You can see that in the photos above.  However, as I am still not completely comfortable with stranding my yarn (I MUCH prefer intarsia to Fair Isle, so far) my mitten had no slack and was crazy tight.  The cuff had fit me perfectly, but the progress I’d made on the mitten needed to be ripped out if I was to have anything servicable.

After the workshop most of us went out for dinner with Beth, and instead of working on Jakob’s costume when I got home, I stuck in some needles and ripped back to the last 2-color section above the Norwegian braid.  I played around with Beth’s chart in Excel until I found a color pattern I found pleasing, then reknit everything I’d ripped.  I was very pleased to find that my tension with 2-color knitting didn’t seem to have the same issues as with 3, and the mitten stretched nicely and fit me quite well.  It was getting late and I was exhausted so I didn’t keep going with the plan of having a completed mitten.  1) the yarn is a little too scratchy for me to want to wear as a mitten, and 2) I wanted to finish whatever I was working on that night and not have another “ufo” lying around.

So I continued until I felt like stopping, and wound up with a fingerless mitten.  I followed Beth’s directions for knitting in a spare yarn to do an afterthought thumb, and after working enough of the color pattern to make me happy, I did a few plain stockinette rounds.  I then threw in a purl ridge followed by another Norwegian braid, and finally bound off loosely holding two colors together.  I know a typical fingerless mitten should come up to at least the base of my fingers, if not the first knuckle, but it was late, I was tired and I didn’t care.

At the very end I took out the waste yarn and picked up those stitches, plus a few extra around the sides of the thumb hole.  I did a few rows in stockinette stitch before binding off in purl (I like the edge it gives).  I’d like to hope I’ll make the matching mitten someday so I can have a pair, but in the meantime at least I have a finished something and I don’t feel guilty.

Author: Jennifer Lori

Punny dork who makes stuff.

2 thoughts on “saturday’s beth brown-reinsel workshop

  1. What, no costume pics????


  2. Where did you go for dinner with Beth?

    Sounds like a fun workshop!

    Love the fingerless gloves – very cool.

    How did you like working with the B&L Sport?

    Yeah, like Tara said – where’s Halloween pics! Must see Jakob in costume. Especially since you knit it!!


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