Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Character Building, Dammit

I knit because it's fun, allegedly. So why is it irritating the blue blazes out of me right now? I have an exemplary character, thank you, I don't need any more!

Example A: That Lacy Cables Shawl of mine. Simple, really. I've been enjoying it. Beautiful yarn, the occasional cable here and there, lovely thing. Except for the realization that my shawl was not turning out like the one pictured in Knitter's. This shawl has five vertical columns of lace, punctuated by cables. The five columns are separated by two stitches. In the magazine photo, those two stitches look like they're purled, but it's not really clear. The chart shows blank cells for those two stitches, meaning k on right side, p on wrong side, whiuch I've been doing.

But having gotten through a little more than a repeat of the 36-row lace pattern, I had this little nagging thought in the back of my mind: those stitches are supposed to be purled.

Nonsense, I said! The chart is wrong, clearly! Some fool made up an incorrect chart, and I like my shawl just the way it is, even if it is different from the photo.

But I didn't like my shawl, not really. I wanted those two purled stitches to set off the five columns. And I took another look at my copy of the chart.

Why, look! There are TWO blank cells in the legend for the chart! One says K on RS, p on WS, the other says P on RS, k on WS. Hell...

So I looked at the original chart in the magazine. Lo! The second cell in the legend is shaded in! As are all the two-stitch columns in the chart!

Damned photocopier did away with the shading. So I spent last evening undoing 46 pairs of knit stitches (the yarn held up admirably, by the way) and redoing them as purl stitches. That's one of four such columns of 46 pairs of knit stitches, mind you. I took myself out to the Adirondack chairs in the backyard and settled in for a relaxing evening of dropping stitches.

The phone rang. The mosquitoes AND the black flies found me. The Carolina Wren decided to sing loudly practically right in my ear. The fledgling Chipping Sparrows were lisping inspidly and constantly, begging for food. Earle wanted to show me the house number post he'd carved and set in the ground and then go for a walk. I went. So much for progress on my knitting.

By 9 PM, I had fixed one column, except for the rows I had inexplicably missed. My admiration for this yarn has increased yet again - it's hairy, somewhat like mohair, but with a bit of effort, it frogged and knit up and frogged and knit up, again, and frogged again, dammit all to hell, and reknit up, AGAIN, with no real problems. I, on the other hand, was completely exhausted and went to bed early. Now I want you all to tell me how much better this looks with purl stitches between the lace columns.

Once Blogger lets me post photos. Grr. I think I need a better/easier/different blogging platform.

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