04 June 2010

Still Knitting on Faith

I've been knitting on some older projects that just need to get off the needles. In particular, I've come back to Puzzlemaker. You may recall that I started this project in 2008. I was moving along rather nicely that summer, and got a lot done during the Beijing Summer Olympic Games. This is when things went bad. I believe the Egregious Error was made sometime during one of the beach vollyball finals. The Americans were playing rather well at beach volleyball, and I got hooked on it. With the twelve-hour time difference, the finals that started at 1 PM Beijing time were at 1 AM Atlanta time. I couldn't resist staying up to watch the finals LIVE. And I knit along merrily.

Do you recall in Gremlins how you aren't supposed to feed the cute little creatures after midnight? I believe there may be a similar rule for knitting. If it requires the least bit of thought, do not attempt after your normal bedtime. Just don't risk it. Well, not only did I make a mistake, but I made a mistake and didn't catch it until after I had finished the following triangle. Ugh!

I finally ripped back and fixed the error in the spring of 2009. But I just couldn't gain traction on the project. Now I'm back to it again. And this time, I think I just may be moving in the right direction. The picture at top is the back of the jacket, sans right sleeve. It is much more complicated, but also I think more interesting and beautiful, than the triangles on the left sleeve. There is both intarsia and stranded knitting (Fair Isle) in this project, as well as modular construction. Trust me, you do not want to rip back intarsia and try to keep all those carefully cut strands organized.

I believe Triangle G (upper right with the zig-zags) was where I made the Egregious Error. But I also knit through Triangle H, the large triangle below it. I had fixed those two last year and recently started again with Triangle I, the large triangle in the lower left. You've no doubt noticed the cute Kokopelli figures in that triangle? In the picture in the book, they are obviously Kokopelli. But they are blobs in the graphs for the sweater. So I e-mailed the publisher, who was very nice but not able to help me on a book that is so old. And truthfully, how many people have made this sweater in the last decade? On Ravelry, I am one of two people with this project. (Kudos to fionamacardle for her black & white attempt.) So it wasn't as if the nice people at Martingale Company were going to have a .pdf file ready to send. In the end, I looked at the slightly too small picture in the book and gave it a good guess. Here's my result:
If you have the book, you can substitute my section of graph for the corresponding section of Triangle I. The figures are upside down because this section is knit top down. The wide lines correspond to the wide lines on the graph in the book.

(If you would like to copy the graph in a larger, easy on the eye size, follow this link.)

Once I got through that issue, I discovered another. The Schaefer Laurel yarn is lovely. However, it has small dabs of color that change every few inches. In the stockinette intarsia sections, I prefer a little pooling. Up until this point, most of those sections were relatively narrow, and so produced pleasing color transitions. (Again, return to those zig-zags in Triangle G.) In those sections, I didn't mind knitting up and doing the calculations for how much yarn to cut. But Triangle I has larger sections. So, it was time to learn a new technique.

Tomorrow: The Technique that Saved Triangle I

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