Why this journey?

I've been retired now for over a year. Husband has been sick but is now doing quite well with new pacemaker. I continue to knit and knit and crochet. Recently I became friends again with my sewing machine so you will see some of those projects, too. Thanks for reading.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Row 16 -- count the stitches

There are only 48 stitches on my needle.  It's a wonderful pattern, another one of Whit's Knits, the Checkerboard Lace Shawl.  This designer does a wonderful job showing and writing the pattern.  The stitches in this one are simple; it's a 20 row pattern repeat (with 10 'rest rows'); the result is delicately lacy.

Here's the work-in-progress.  Using the second ball of that magnificent yarn spun by friend, Darliss, a variegated wool/silk blend.
Darliss' spun wool/silk with size 6US needles.
Pattern by Whit's Knits.

Row 16 -- I spent at least 30 minutes knitting and un-knitting that row, counting the stitches to discover I had 46, or 47, but No!  Not the required 48.  Can you see the little safety-pin things near the needle?  These are markers to tell me that, after re-examining the results of Row 16 I have omitted two yarn-overs.  The YO (yarn-over) is the way to add stitches.  Next to the YO's are the get-rid-of-stitches-on-purpose technique.  In this pattern all the add-stitches are cancelled out by the get-rid-of-stitches, so at the end of every row -- yes, every row -- you should expect to have the same 48 you started with.

The big red "X" means I was sloppy in the translation
from words to code.  And the mistake was in Row 14, not Row 16
These lessons can be wearying, though valuable:  It's seldom this moment that's the difficulty; it's more likely the choice made earlier whose consequences are now appearing.  I think I'm on track now.  I'm counting more often and paying much closer attention to each right side row, hoping to minimize future consequences (knitting back, throwing the entire thing into the garbage, screaming uncontrollably, you get the idea.)

I'm afraid I may have discouraged you from trying this pattern.  Don't let my own sloppy approach keep you from a delightful and easy lace experience.  Here's the link again:   Checkerboard Lace Shawl.

One last picture to show the scope of the project.  There's the pattern (my coded version, Whit's Knits uses words), the trusty red pencil, the fixer thing with the two crochet hooks, markers to indicate missed stitches.  And the most essential of all -- a fine yarn and some comfortable needles.

Here's hoping you find your way back when you need to.  If you take up knitting you'll get lots of practice.

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