Thursday, July 21, 2005

symmetry is a journey

Come with me on my train trip. Tear your hair out now, or save it for the end. The cafe car is two cars forward, by the

New Haven CT 2:11 pm
I depart. I'm working on my Kiri shawl. All is well. I cast on 2 nights ago with size 10 us needles, at row 4 moved to size 9 needles. Still seems loose so I switch now to size 8 needles. I am on row 9.

Bridgeport CT 2:47
I'm on row 15. I take a good look at my scrunched up shawl. I'm not happy. The early rows are too loose and messy.

Stamford CT 3:05
I'm ripping it all out.

NY City 4:02 pm
The cast on and early rows are done. Things are looking up. The Big Smelly Guy who's been sitting next to me for the past hour is gone. I try to look unapproachable but a young man sits next to me. At least he's thin and has no odor. I try not to poke him with the needles.

Trenton NJ 4:35
I finish chart 1 ! I start row 23. Kiri's looking good. I am Too Cool for a Lifeline.

Philadelphia PA 5 pm
Row 27 and something is definitely wrong. I tink back 2 rows, knit them again. Its even worse. I re-tink. Its getting messy. I curse that there is no lifeline. I try to re-knit.

Wilmington DE 5:35 pm
Row 27. Still. There are more stitches on one side of the center than the other. No amount of recounting changes this. I spread it out and notice the center stitch is not straight, its zigzagging. This is an imperfection even I cannot live with. I rip it back to the cast on rows. I curse a little more (see Philly, above).

Baltimore MD 6:20 pm
I'm on row 5. I am knitting ve-rr-y carefully.

New Carollton MD 7:10 pm
I get off the train. Its been five hours.
I am on Row 9

later that night...row 19

kiri begin


Lee Ann said...

Sigh. That must have been painful...but it's looking good now, at least.

I thought I was too cool for stitch markers. And then the cluephone rang.

Zarzuela said...

Oh you poor thing! At least you have it straightened out now. And I've been on that exact same train ride recently. At least Amtrak is fairly pleasant and there is lots of room in those seats vs. airplanes.


wenders said...

I had to rip out a good 30-ish rows this weekend too - of a garter stitch pattern. I felt silly, since I had decided that I was too cool to look at my knitting, and had been knitting in the dark watching a movie. Sigh.

I'll bet both our projects look a good sight better now. Ribbit.

Kay said...

Grasshopper, it's all in the LEAF. After you knit the first chart, spend some time examining the leaves. Note the symmetry of the yarnovers (you knit no stitch before the YO, then you knit 1, then 2, then 3) and then the symmetry of the decreasing-to-the-leaf-tip rows (you knit no stitch before the first SKP, then 7, then K2tog; next row you knit 1 st before the SKP, then 5, then K2tog and so forth). When you see how that works, start the second chart, and think about each leaf as you knit it. Don't leave a leaf until you see that it is symmetrical. (This takes no time at all once you get going--you will be knitting along and you will stop and go HEY I'm SUPPOSED TO KNIT 2 BEFORE THE YO ON THIS ROW WTF IS WRONG?) The thing is, if you go leaf by leaf, you will catch any mistake instantly. The tricky part is knowing when you've hit the shawl's center. I tried stitch markers but they won't stay put. But doing it leaf-by-leaf, when you get to the center you realize it immediately, because it doesn't work as a leaf.

OK, this is probably not helping. It helped me enormously so I had to share. xoxo Kay

kt said...

Ooooh, I am so glad I found your blog (via Mason-Dixon) as I've just embarked on Kiri as well, tho with a different yarn. I'm learning from you and will put in a lifeline as it's time to go into the leaves...

How's yours coming? I'll post photos of mine soon, and you can peek and giggle at my newbie lace.

Gorgeous tank top, BTW.