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Brewer Burns

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Good Intentions

I am the kind of person that often possesses good intentions but lacks the commitment and drive to follow through on all of those good intentions. Take my prepping for the start of my Flower Basket Shawl, for instance. In a recent post I explained how I planned to approach said shawl. I knew that I didn’t want to double-strand the yarn as the pattern suggests, and so, swatching would be in order. First, I planned to swatch a motif using the recommended needle size, with the yarn double-stranded, as a default. Second, I planned to swatch using the recommended needle size and the yarn single-stranded, and third, I was going to do yet another swatch with the yarn single-stranded but using a smaller needle size than recommended. And I was going to block all three swatches to see which one I like best.

Did I do any of these things? In a nutshell, No. When it came right down to it I swatched about half a flower basket using size 5 needles (two sizes smaller than the recommended size) and the yarn single-stranded. Then when I had stretched the motif out (still on the needles) and sort of squinted at it I decided it looked good, ripped out the swatch and started knitting.

Now, here’s the embarrassing thing. I have already had a wee meltdown precipitated by frustration with the pattern. You see, I printed the pattern off the Interweave Knits website when it was still available for free, stuck it in my stash of free internet patterns, and then didn’t think about it again until I started knitting. I cast on just fine. The cast on, by the way, is very cool and results in a completely seamless edge. I also worked the upper flower basket chart just fine. Things were going swimmingly and I was in love.

Then last night. I made it to the lower flower basket chart and COULD NOT FOR THE LIFE OF ME FIGURE IT THE FUCK OUT. I could not figure out how a shawl that gets bigger and bigger could continue to use the same chart over and over again, especially when the number of stitches in the first row (the one with the fewest stitches) could not be multiplied to get the number of stitches in the last row (the one with the most stitches.) I was really, really stuck. Finally, after going to bed, realizing I couldn’t sleep without knowing how to conquer the shawl, and getting up again, I remembered that I had printed off some pattern notes from Knitting Interrupted website about the shawl way back when. After I located the notes, sat down, and read them, the solution to my problem immediately jumped out at me. Apparently, there is a ten stitch section of the shawl that is repeated, but on my copy of the pattern, which of course was printed in black and white, that ten stitch repeat was NOT highlighted in red. So I never even knew it was there. Since the pattern does not mention the need to repeat a certain portion of the pattern, I had no idea. I do think I’m back on track now, but will keep you posted.


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