Wednesday, September 21, 2011

T is for Tardy and Time and Tension

Whelp, it's still Wednesday so I haven't missed WIP Wednesday; however, I don't have any pictures of my WIPs to share. So it brings me to my ABCs with Accidental Knitter meme, which I am tardy for as I normally post on Monday's.

Hence... Tardy.

Time, on the other hand, has not necessarily been on my side but it hasn't been horrid either. I seem to have just enough time to get me through what I need to get through but that doesn't mean I have enough time to work my way through blog posts... which irritates me. I really enjoy blogging, especially about crochet. As of the start of this semester, it seems I have no time to blog. In fact, I'm taking a break from studying for my exam tomorrow (I rescheduled it from Monday to Thursday) in order to write this.

I'm kicking myself because I didn't take any decent pictures of the scarf or poncho I'm working on. And it irritates me more I have had no time to work on the table runner that I started a month or so ago.... Of course, it is only logical I put that item aside as its for me. I have to make TIME to work on Christmas presents considering we are only three months from the holiday.

Finally, I like to always bring things posts back to crochet or some variation of the fiber arts so I'm going out in left field to talk about tension.

Tension is how tight you pull the yarn to create your stitches. Loose tension yields looser, bigger stitches and tighter tension yields the obvious - tighter, smaller stitches.

Many new crocheters fall victim to starting a huge project, like a double crocheted afghan. They start out relatively new to the stitch which means their tension is normally looser. Then as they work across, they become more consistent with their tension, tightening it a bit. The effect is a trapezoidal afghan. It isn't the crocheters fault - it's the nature of the craft. This is why I suggest creating scarves first. Dishcloths are great but they are smaller and give less opportunity to standardize your tension. A scarf allows you a larger piece with more stitches which means more time to practice and fall into a consistency with your tension. Once you can do a scarf and have no issues with shape and size, then taking on an afghan makes a bit more sense.

Tension isn't overly important when you are working on non-wearables; however, if you are going to make a sweater, make sure you pay attention to gauge because that will tell you if your tension is spot on in producing stitches of the right size to coincide with the size the pattern is making.

My only real tip is if you find yourself with a tension that is too big for the pattern gauge, move to a hook that is one size smaller. Same for if your gauge is too small, or tension is too tight - move to a hook one size up. You don't want to get too crazy with changing hook size because patterns are written to accommodate hook AND yarn - not one or the other.

Hmmmm what more can I talk about with tension? .... well, I don't know right now but I'm sure once I hit publish, I'll think of something else! *laughs*

Have a great night everyone! Happy crafting and God bless -
- Cris


florencefrazier2002 said...

You know what I hate?  Is that my working interrupts my knitting and crocheting!  LOL  Don't beat yourself up we all go through this.

CrochetBlogger said...

Tension is part of the reason you're supposed to gauge swatch, right?

Cris said...

yup yup!

Cris said...

OH life definitely gets in the way! This semester has been rough but I know next semester will be fine. Wait - there isn't gonna be a next semester in January... cuz I graduate! (hopefully lol)

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