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Thursday, 5 November 2009

Leaves

This scarf is a culmination of several different threads coming together.

The yarn was handspun and a gift from one of my lovely customers. I decided to dye it using the colours 'Flax' and 'Coral'. This turned out a bit pinker than I'd imagined. The skein, which I forgot to photograph before I wound the ball didn't show this up, but once it was wound, there was the pink. I'm really not sure how that happened?


I had an idea that started with the idea of Autum, though with the pink, perhaps Spring is more appropriate.


That was the first step. These lace leaves occur in lots of pattern books. They consist of increasing without the mirror decrease. This creates a raised leaf, then decrease to bring the end down. I like the idea of playing with the fabric surface, and these are a good way to start.


I decided to knit this lengthwise and with leaves all along. I swatched and it worked well.


The next part of this was to use the provisional cast-off so that I could knit the leaves in two directions. I haven't done this before so I was glad to finally have a reason. You can see the white line is a crochet length from which I picked up the stitches. This was pulled out as the stitches were picked up and I started knitting the leaves in the opposite direction.
So far, so good...but this is a tale of changes, frogging and different endings.
Half way through the second length, it became patently obvious that I was going to run out of yarn. As the scarf is short anyway, some other design feature was going to have to complete the design. (I will do a double row of leaves another day, it was a good idea).
Second idea............frog it again.
Now, you might be thinking that I should have sampled and checked, but sometimes you just have to go with it. It really depends on how much time you're prepared to lose. In this case just a couple of hours to get what I really wanted, and swatching wouldn't have told me if I was going to run out, well not with some great scales and good math!
I finished off one side with the wiggly little cast-off all the way along. For each stitch, cast on three stitches, then cast off four. It created a gorgeous wave.
I undid the other cast-off edge and used the same technique as the other side, except on the tip of the small leaf I did two six-stitch cast-on and off in the one stitch. For the bigger leaf I did three nine-stitch wiggles. Two different edges, I love it.

1 comment:

Knitspingirl said...

Hmmm ... swatches.
We all know we should do them, and we all don't.
I did recently read an interview with Meg Swansen (!) in which she admits that she doesn't swatch either. She would rather frog half the back of a sweater (a woman after my own heart!)