Monday, July 20, 2015

Wavelength Shawl from Holley's Yarn Shoppe - Day 3

What is it with yarn-overs and stitch markers? Why can’t they get along?

It seems I’m always working with a pattern that places a yarn-over next to a stitch-marker.  I can see why it happens—sections of lace design are often separated by lines of yarn-overs—but it’s so frustrating when the stitch marker sneaks under the yarn over to mess up my stitch count.  I suppose I could try using larger stitch markers, but I hate how they feel in my hands, sticking up off the needles to poke at my fingers and palms.  Knitting is a highly tactile experience for me.  I don’t like anything that interferes with the pleasure of the yarn and needles in my hands.

I’ll admit, it’s been a problem in this section of the pattern.  It helps that I can line up certain design elements to see if I’m in the right place (an excellent reason to use charts for lacework).  The best solution I have found is to go back over the needle before I begin a wrong-side row and make sure the marker is where it is supposed to be. That means either after the yarn-over in rows 22 and 30 or before the yarn-over in rows 26 and 34.  Complicated, but necessary.

Things don’t line up in neat rows on this pattern.  The lacework columns of yarn-overs wiggle a little bit as they run up the center section.  I’m sure it will block out nicely—lacework never looks good in the knitting, but acquires its true beauty after a bath—but it’s troublesome right now.  I never know if I’ve truly messed up.  Luckily, I’ve never been off by more than one stitch, and that feels like a small enough error that if it is a mistake, it won’t be noticeable.

The rows are getting longer...I can feel it.  Can I escape the Curse of the Top Down Shawl?  Only the next posting will tell.

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