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Brewer Burns

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Two Things

First thing: South Dakota recently enacted an abortion ban. In response the President of the Oglala Sioux has announced that she plans to build an abortion clinic on the reservation. If you're interested in writing a letter of support to President FireThunder or donating please see the information here. Yes, I'm one of those women. I already wrote President FireThunder an email of support and plan to send a donation as soon as I have more than $50.00 in my bank account. Oh, and just in case it needs to be said: if you don't like my politics please feel free to look away.

Second thing: problems with Manly. I have discovered a mistake. Or, actually, one mistake which causes several other mistakes in the pattern. I am making the 45" chest. The first mistake starts with the armhole shaping. You cast on 109 stitches initially for the front, then you decrease: (109 cast on stitches) - 4 bound off stitches - 4 bound off stitches = 101 stitches, then you decrease (101 stitches left over) - 2 (decrease one stitch each side of needle) - 2 - 2 - 2 (decrease one stitch each side of needle three times) = 93 stitches. The pattern says you should have 95 stitches at this point. But you don't, nor should you if you follow the directions. Not a big deal, granted, but it just gets better from here.

When you get to the neck and shoulder shaping the pattern instructs you to work the first 46 stitches in the row (remember you have 93 stitches total at this point) and then ssk. So, if you follow the directions you have worked a total of 48 stitches, and have 47 stitches on that side of the sweater (because of the ssk), leaving 45 stitches for the other side of the sweater. Hmmm. I don't think it really matters all that much whether the sweater is off one or two stitches on each side, but I decided that I would, instead, work the first 45 stitches, then ssk. This means that I worked a total of 47 stitches on the first side of the sweater, and am left with 46 stitches on that first side and 46 stitches on the other side. In other words, the sides are as even as they can be.

Now comes the next mistake. While shaping the neck and shoulders you are directed to decrease a total of 43 stitches on each side of the sweater, then break yarn. If I were to do that then I would be left with three stitches on the needle on each side of the sweater, with my modified version of the pattern. If I were to follow the pattern exactly I would be left with two stitches on the left side and four stitches on the right side. Since the pattern makes no provision for holding those stitches for later, I'm assuming that they mean for me to bind off all of the stitches on the tops of the shoulders before moving on to the sleeves. Therefore this is another mistake.

This is what I've decided to do about it. I'm going to stick with my method, and when I get to the last row, I'm just going to bind off all of the stitches. Easy solution.

Now, I wanted to ask, has anyone else had this problem, with this size or any of the others? If so, what did you do about it? And lastly, do you think my solution will work? Oh, and please, if I have made a math error, feel free to point it out. I used a calculator but that's never stopped me from being wrong in the past.

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