Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Latvian Fringes and Lace Surgery

Warning: The Lace Surgery in the second half of this post is not for the fainthearted. Look at your own risk.

First, though, Fringe. In the picture you see, running clockwise from the Green, St. Patrick's Latvian Mitten, Latvian Sampler Mitten, Two-color Latvian Sampler Mitten, and Scottish Latvian Mitten. Their gauges run from 16-20 sts per inch, on size 3.0 mm, 2.25 mm, 2.5 mm, and 3.0 mm needles. The blue mitten was worked over 48 sts, the rest over 50. Pattern from Upitis' Latvian Mittens.

The fringe on the first 3 mittens was worked as given in the directions. The last mitten was a bit of an experiment, to see if I had correctly guessed how the fringe in Plate 6A of Latvian Mittens was formed. From the looks of it, it was! Instead of working the row after the fringe so there are purl 'blips' on the outside, work it so the knit side of the stitches faces outwards. Voila, end of story.

I wonder if it would look nicer without the braid right after it. Or if the yarn wasn't agreeing with the fringe. It's just not as nice as the other fringes, and it should be the best since it was fringe 9, and the others were 1, 2, 5,6, 7, and 8. Practice should make perfect, not result in declining aesthetic appeal.

Lace Surgery

The Sampler Stole is moving along nicely. Calculations say I passed the 45% mark today, and I really REALLY want to make something small and actually finish something. Looking at what my 'friends' in Ravelry are up to is not helping. (Especially Molly. Not that a cap shawl is a quick knit, but since it's done, it has to be quicker than the stole. Right? And that spiral cap with a braid is calling me. Or maybe I should design something using techniques from Armenian Knitting. Or else spin. Spinning has been calling my name too.

Sigh. The stole will get done faster if I drool over other projects while knitting. As I read a few weeks ago, "Mittens do not knit themselves sitting in a corner." (from either Latvian Mittens or Folk Knitting in Estonia). Stoles don't knit themselves that way either. The thought is I'll get it finished by the end of April, so I need to keep the fingers to the needles. KnitPicks Options, 3.0 mm 16". So much nicer than Addi non-lace 40" cable needles.

But, surgery. I actually did surgery twice, but the photo shows the bigger one. Something just looked wrong, and since I am not a firm believer in lifelines, I knit to the appropriate area, prepped the stole, and did exploratory surgery.

It seemed to go quite quickly, but when I had the OR cleaned up, I noticed that over a half-hour had passed. Would it have been faster to tink? 495 stitches? No. I think not. Would it have been faster to frog? Doubtful. There isn't a plain row within several inches of the surgical site. And, it looks all better.

I haven't pinned out the stole to see how big it will be yet. This could be a recipe for disaster, since I am not using the recommended yarn, recommended needles, and have only made a stab at the recommended gauge. (Stab = "Hmm. This might work") If the stole isn't wearable, I will frame it and stick it on the wall. I know I'm somewhat in the ballpark, however. Unblocked, the shawl (the first 461 rows of it, out of 642 or so) is just a little longer than the open book is.

Isn't it pretty? I do so love lace. Lace and spinning and stranded ... never a dull moment.

Still, the Cabled Hat from today's (nope, yesterday's) 2008 Knitting Pattern A Day Calendar looks like a quick knit. (Wafffling. Whatever will Denise think?)

And to top off this post, or bottom off it, here's a picture of our front yard. When we woke up Monday, the ground was bare of snow . Then as the day went on (and got warmer), it began first to rain, then to snow, then to snow heavily. Schools were closed at 9:30 AM (except ours. We have tomorrow off for a celebration of Doctor Appointments and New Medical Hardware). We made sure all the curtains were open and took snow breaks from our studies. It was a slushy mess in all actuality, but we were inside and had heat, cocoa, and good books.



Shan said...

I had to frog/tink (a combination) about 10 lace rounds the other day. Just couldn't repair it. It wasn't stable enough for surgery, sadly...That was about 350 sts per round, give or take.


Anonymous said...

the cap shawl is relatively quick - and pretty mindless until the trellis patterning begins at the outer edges. That was the point at which I started yellin' at the yougun's to be quiet so I could count - every repeat, every row. Sampler on my list...need. to. finish. ufos. first.

Just A Mom said...

Love the fringe assessment. Will refer back to this often as I have been experimenting still also.

LOVELY fringes BTW I even like the one that "doesn't agree" with the braid. I still think the combo is striking.



You are the amazing Carolyn!!!!



Denise said...

No! Say it isn't true!! You waffle??!! I don't believe it for a New York (even if it is an Ontario, New York ) minute.

I think you dream about waffling in the same way I dream about getting my little self, with my little needles, over to that little corner to knit those mitten who certainly will not do it themselves. And staying there.

My vote and sneaking suspicion is that that stole will be long done and done well before the end of April ... It is so pretty.

Denise said...

P. S.

Where's the spinning?

And please correct my grammar in the preceding comment.

: )