Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Turning a corner

The finished swatch of the lace edging.
I think it turned out well.
I went with the stockinette rather than the original garter. The garter hid the pattern too much. I had to redo the chart a third time; there was a mistake I didn’t catch until I got to the tenth row.

Five repeats of the lace edging per side should add enough lace, without overdoing it. The math is easy enough: 72 rows per repeat divided by 2 (you only attach the edging every other row for it to lay flat), multiplied by 5 repeats equals 180 stitches per side. But then there are the corners. I’ve never turned a corner in knitting before, and designing my own was quite a challenge.

I know of two ways to turn a knitted corner*, easing the boarder** or a short row turn***. The math required to figure out how to ease the pattern worried me. But you only need one extra stitch for a short row corner. I liked that math.

So, I picked up 101 stitches per side around the blanket. I had to fudge a bit, but not much. Then I knit around, and around, and around, yarning over twice per corner until I had 181 stitches per side. Easy, and rather repetitive. Designing the lace corners were neither. Getting your knitting to turn 90 degrees, while keeping the style of the edge, is not the easiest thing in the world.

Working on both projects kept me from going crazy from either. When the lace became too much, I switched to the relaxing stockinette. When the stockinette became too mindless, I worked on getting the corner right (pun intended). I tried out four different corner swatches and charted out at least five other possible corners.

This is the whole lace edging swatch with the four different attempts at a corner.
I finally decided on this one.
It's the closest to the image I had in my head.
I’ve finished the center stockinette, and started the boarder. I'll post pictures of the whole thing once it is done, and given away.

Next time: There is a fabulous LYS in Houston.

*I’m sure there are more.
**When you ease a boarder, instead of picking up a stitch on the center every other row, you pick up the same stitch three times on one side of the corner, four times in the middle, and three times on the other side. Or at least I think that’s how you do it.
*** When working short rows you knit a row and turn before you get to the end. Then you knit back and forth in the center, eventually going back to knitting the whole row. You end up with a section of knitting that has more knitting in the center than at the edges. This can be used for toes and heals in socks, and also for including more space in sweaters for bustier ladies. Here’s a better explanation of short rows by Cat Bordhi.


Erin said...

You did a great job on the blanket! It's beautiful and I know A loved it. :)

Can't wait for you to show off pics of the final product!

MaryAnne said...

I have no clue how to knit something that looks like this, but it's gorgeous!

Elizabeth GM said...

Having heard about your wrestling with this 1910s lace border, it's great to see the actual thing. Absolutely stunning!