aswim in knits

Thursday, August 18, 2005

When bad things happen to good knitters

I started working on a tshirt for my 7 year old niece. Remember this yarn? Well, I decided I didn't want to use the green after all. I think she will get more wear out of an all-pink shirt than a pink and green one. So, I started thinking and designing, using The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns and Knitting on the Edge and the Barbara Walker treasury I borrowed from my M-I-L.

I found an edging I liked from the Knitting on the Edge lace edging sections. I converted the pattern from flat to round in order to accomodate the 11 stitch lace repeat. I did a big stockinette swatch to get my gauge. Then I did a swatch of the lace stitch to see if I liked how it looked in the Cotton Classic yarn.
I liked how it looked (don't look at the repeat on the left, though, since I made a mistake and, since this was only a swatch, didn't bother to rip back).

So, I cast on my 143 stitches. And very carefully knit the lace, using stitch markers and counting every repeat. Or so I thought. Yeah, I missed a few yarn overs. Well, that can be easily fixed by scooping up the yarn from the row below... All was good. I finished the lace, still had 143 stitches, and knit about an inch and a half of the ribbing pattern that continues above the lace -- it's a k1 p1 k7 p1 k1 (repeat) rib. So far so good, right?

Then I decided to measure. I guess my cast on was a little tight, because the bottom edge was a bit short of the 30" that I was aiming for, although the body looked like it would be ok. Not only did the too tight cast on make it too small, it also made the points of the lace edging curl up. Note that they did NOT do that in my swatch.

Oh yeah, and the ribbed body? Looked like a great idea in the book's photo ... of a swatch knit in wool. Not so good in cotton. Even though I really tried to keep an even tension, all of the K stitches that followed the P stitches are wonky.
And since the yarn is kind of shiny, the purl ditches kind of get lost anyways.

So, what was next? This ...

I ripped out the whole thing and restarted. This time, I cast on with a size 9 needle, and went back to my size 7 for the lace edge. I am almost done the lace part ... I have one more all-knit row to go. Then I am going to knit the whole body in simple stockinette. After all, the yarn is hot pink and shiny -- don't need to go overboard with ribbing or another fancy stitch pattern! So far, the lace edge is curling a little, but not as much, and I think blocking will fix it. Photos to come once the stockinette is underway.

The moral of the story? I knit TWO damn good swatches, and still ended up ripping out the whole thing. Should have started with a sleeve, I guess! Hopefully, version 2 will look better.


Post a Comment

<< Home