Sunday, December 14, 2008

Bumps in the design road

First, as promised, here is a photo of the completed Clapotis. I decided not to block it as I wanted it to curl and be cuddly around my neck. It is very warm and I'm enjoying it. Mother Nature has been making it attractive by bringing in cold weather in time. The two yarns combined quite well to create a cohesive pattern. It doesn't really look like stripes from afar.

After a week of fidgeting around because I hadn't started the Latvian mittens when I was fresh in the morning, I decided to start them on Friday evening. I'm not sure that was a great decision. I had to rip and re-do the braid and the fringe 3 times because of silly mistakes. Then I realized I had too many sts on the needles. I modified designs from a site with lots of Latvian mitten charts. The chart I started with had 80 sts and that seemed like a good number so I created a chart with 80 sts. But the two edges of my chart didn't match up! I had the wrong number of sts for a complete set of repeats which is key to circular knitting.

Since I was not going to rip and re-do the fringe and the braid, I decided to re-work the chart to fit the 80 sts. I picked different motifs, modified them to fit and created a new chart. Since then I've made some slow progress. I have made so many mistakes and had to tink back that it is slow going. But I am at the end of the cuff now. I have a couple of rnds more for the cuff and then I have to determine where to put the thumb opening and start on the body of the mitten.
These are going to be bullet proof and warm. I am knitting them on 2 mm needles so they fit. I should have started with 64 or 68 sts, not 80. Then I could have used 2.25 mm needles and the stranding would have been easier. Oh well. Warm, wind-proof mittens are not the worst thing I could have created.

The moral of the story is that it does require concentration and a clear mind to design. Trying to do it when one is tired and brain-dead is not productive.

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