Apr. 21st, 2010 10:27 am
elizabeth_mn: (Default)

My HB took this photo in the back garden of the B&B we stayed at in Chicago last week.

I think this scarf is probably as close to absolute perfection as I can get in knitting.



Apr. 12th, 2010 07:52 am
elizabeth_mn: (Default)

I finished my scarf! My Kernel!

I blocked it yesterday and it is still laying out to dry.  I found the grafting to be pretty difficult, as I expected.  I have never been good at grafting.  This time I tried it on a swatch first, and it did not look right, so I knitted an extra row on the scarf and fiddled with the stitches a bit, and it still did not come out quite right, but I think it looks great anyway!  Certainly the best job of grafting I have ever done.

I tried to use the grafting instructions from TECHknitter in the latest issue of Interweave Knits, but they were way too confusing for me; odd, because I usually find TECHknitter to be so clear.  But I used the directions in the pattern, and they worked really well for me.  I think one thing that helped was the terminology: "left to right" instead of "knitwise."  I've been knitting for a dozen years, so I know what knitwise and purlwise mean, but I could probably knit for a hundred years and still right and left would be more deeply ingrained in my brain.

While I was knitting this, I had planned to buy a set of blocking wires.  When I blocked my last lace scarf, I used every pin I owned and the edges still looked sloppy.  But the unforseen sewing machine troubles have caused me to economize, so instead I sewed a length of thin cotton yarn along each long edge.  When I pinned it out to block, I pulled the cotton yarns very tight to straighten the edges and pinned them in place by little loops tied at the ends.  I'll have to wait until I un-pin it for the final effect, but so far it looks great and it was really simple to pin it out straight.

Photos when I have time - hopefully as soon as it dries!
elizabeth_mn: (Default)

I figured out my lace issue!! Yay!

This is probably the most complex thing I have ever modified in knitting, so I feel pretty pleased with myself.

Here's part of what I've got so far, pinned out on the ironing board so you can see what's going on:

Detail shot of my modifications )
I did a few repeats before noticing that the pattern as written creates an odd sort of fork or misplaced bar on the lozenge shapes on either edge. Now, obviously, this could have just been my error in reading or executing the pattern, but it seemed unlikely to me that I would make the exact same error 6 times. I looked at the photos on the pattern page again, and I'm not positive, but it looks like that's the way the pattern is written.

Still, I didn't quite like the effect. I wanted the shapes on the edge to match the shapes in the interior. So I played around a bit. Mostly I just stared at the thing, then I stared at the chart, then repeated for a while. Someone suggested that I might be using the wrong decrease, and i thought that was it until I looked at it again.  Eventually I realized that one yarn-over hole was too close to the edge, and that was happening on Row 7.

Row 7 as written was: Sl 1, K3, YO, ssk, K2, YO, *sk2p, YO, K2, YO, sk2p, YO, K2, YO* (rep * twice more), sk2p, YO, K2, K2tog, YO, K4.

Mod #1 was scooting the YO/decrease on each side one stitch toward the center (so my new Row 7 read: Sl 1, K4, YO, ssk, K1, YO, *sk2p, YO, K2, YO, sk2p, YO, K2, YO* (rep * twice more), sk2p, YO, K1, K2tog, YO, K5.)

That put the YO in the right place, but the adjoining stitch still looked wonky. Then I realized I was overcomplicating it.

Mod #2 was inverting the YO and decrease on each edge (so this Row 7 read: Sl 1, K3, ssk, YO, K2, YO, *sk2p, YO, K2, YO, sk2p, YO, K2, YO* (rep * twice more), sk2p, YO, K2, YO, K2tog, K4.)

That made it look just the way I wanted it!  I figured this out by looking at the edges of the interior lozenge shapes on the chart and tracking where the YOs and decreases fell in relation to each other.  I am still barely proficient in lace but I really feel like I learned something.

I'll be adding these notes to my Ravelry page, as well.  I hope someone finds them useful!

Even though I've figued this out now, it is way too subtle to rip back (at least according to my standards) but I'm glad I can fix it going forward.  I'm really enjoying knitting this!


Jan. 8th, 2010 07:51 am
elizabeth_mn: (Default)
I've done almost 10 repeats on my lace scarf, and I've begun fiddling with the lace pattern.  There is this odd part on the edge that I don't like.  It's way too subtle to be worth ripping back what I've already done, but I want to try to correct it going forward.  I tried one variation yesterday and it's improved, but not perfect.  I have another idea that will hopefully make it look the way I want.  If it works I'm going to make some notes on Ravelry about it.
elizabeth_mn: (Default)
I moved on to the main body pattern and completed about 1.5 repeats. I threaded a lifeline after the first completed repeat. I think I will continue to thread lifelines after every rep.

I pinned it to the ironing board to open it up and get more of an idea of what it will look like after blocking.

Mostly I've been working on this while sitting on the floor next to F while she's hanging out in her swing. I'm keeping track of my place in the chart with a post-it note. This is definitely more complicated than any lace I've ever done, and it's holey-er, too. I really like the way it looks so far!

I hope to have this ready to wear by spring.
elizabeth_mn: (needlecraft)
On Friday I went to Borealis Too, their second location which I didn't realize existed until last week. It's downtown St. Paul, just off the Ecolab plaza, inside the building next to the Ecolab building. It was a little hard to find and while I was looking for it I stepped into Candyland and got some yummy treats (yay!).

I picked up some delicious Cherry Tree Hill merino sock yarn and I was just itching to get my hands on it, so this weekend I started my new lace scarf.

The pattern is Kernel from Knitty. So far I am loving it. It's my first time reading charts but I just dove in and it seems to be making sense.

I've finished the border, now it's on to the main body pattern. I'm skipping the beads because I don't like beads on clothes, I'm always afraid they will snag on something. I messed up a couple edge stitches a few rows ago, but since they are just garter stitch I think I can fix them with a crochet hook, by dropping them and picking them back up again.

Once I get a little farther I plan to thread lifelines into this in case I need to rip back! The pattern is pretty complex (for me at least).
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