Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Being Wrong Can Be a Good Thing

We edit this post to come to the aid of a knitter in need!
Valerie sent me a message on a post from March 2008. The post here. (No, she didn't send it back in 2008 - I'm not that slow. She sent it today.) And she would like to know how to get to the section in the middle - the horizontal part.

Well, Val, I can talk you through it! But let me say, you have to trust the pattern is telling you the truth in this case because it is - but I get why it's confusing. OK, let's go step by step (the rest of you can follow along by casting on about 20 stitches and you'll get the idea and Val, this might be something you want to do to practice:

You've completed the garter stitch vertical panel and you have 200 stitches on your needle.

  1. Put six more stitches on your needle using the cast on method. (Knit the stitch but instead of transferring the stitch to the right needle, place it back on the left needle. Do that six times.)
  2. You now have 206 (or 26 if you're doing the smaller version)
  3. Knit 5 stitches
  4. slip a stitch -purl wise
  5. knit a stitch
  6. pass the slipped stitch over the knitted stitch
  7. TURN YOUR WORK as if you have completed the entire row
  8. slip a stitch
  9. knit 4 stitches
  10. purl the last stitch
  11. TURN YOUR WORK as if you have completed the entire row
  12. slip a stitch
  13. knit 4 stitches
  14. slip a stitch
  15. knit a stitch
  16. pass the slipped stitch over the knitted stitch
  18. repeat 8-17

Essentially what you're doing is a bind off. With each turn, you're picking up one more stitch on the needle and with the passed stitch, you're decreasing. You are going to end up with one stitch on your needle and be in a position to pick up the stitches to go vertical for the last part of the scarf. It's a pretty cute technique! Practice it on the 20 stitches first and you will be able to see how it picks up and the horizontal section starts to form. You have to trust that it will all happen as written! Let me know if you need anything else.

Back to the regular post!

It is said that your really good lessons come from being wrong than from being right. After all, if you're right about everything you really have nothing to learn, do you? And since you cannot be right about everything (and if you think you are you've just proved the theory into fact) you learn that and whatever else you need to learn from the mistake. Hence, we have the Epais yarn:

You remember this yarn.
It was an exception to my yarn busting rule. It was the one yarn I was salivating to try and I was going to wait until it went on sale to purchase some and then the marvelous Vickie brought some to the yarn exchange and I had gobs of the stuff.

And I didn't think I liked it because it wasn't feeling right. But I was going to give it one more shot and put it into my favorite afghan pattern and challenge Yarndis, the fiber goddess to a duel of spirit. After all, this stuff is kinda pricey. It couldn't just sit around the house. Well, the lesson is one should never give up:

look at it. I mean, look at it - are you looking? It's beautiful!
It isn't quite done yet, these are the two panels that are done and the third one is almost done and there are two more (at least) after that. That stubby white part at the center bottom is where the yarn came out of it's weave so it's a natural distraction that adds character and you should feel this stuff - soft as butter (OK, you know what? Who has really touched butter like that?)

I also said I had enough to make the afghan out of Epais alone and that might not be true so I have included some of the green shaded Homespun and it fits in pretty darned nicely. I even like the color of the Camo which was so disappointing to me before and the marvelous Vickie's yarn is a great color splash.
I hope to have it done by the sale next month. It's going to be the most expensive afghan I ever made and it will break my heart to see it go - but I do want it to go.

Do you see what happens when you keep putting one foot in front of the other? Sometimes you do take some steps backwards but eventually that forward motion gets you to some new and unexpected places.

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