Backyard Leaves

The zig-zag crochet scarf is no more. OK, half of it is no more. I stopped wearing that scarf becuase it was too wide for its length. A shame, since the Malabrigo is so soft and the red is gorgeous. So, I ripped out half of it the other night and am working on Backyard Leaves (isn’t that a pretty one?). By which I mean, I have cast on several times for Backyard Leaves, and currently am ready to cast on again.

The pattern is charted, so this is a new skill. Yay! (For the muggles: think paint-by-numbers, but with crazy little symbols instead of numbers.) I figured that there would be some instruction regarding how to read the chart, and in any case I was going to start it at Stitch n Bitch, so if I got stuck I could ask for help from someone who has actually knit from charts (other folks, too). When I started, though, I was surprised that there were no instructions whatsoever given on how to read the chart, except for the key. None with the pattern notes, none in the “how to knit” instructions at the back of the book. (WTF, Interweave?) This means they did not tell me which rows represent the “right side” of the scarf, and they did not tell you that you read the right side rows in one direction, and the wrong side rows in the other. You could puzzle some of this out by examining the chart and thinking very deeply and conceptually. Or by the Alison Method (TM), which is to forge ahead blindly and hope that you are right until you realize you are wrong. I ripped it out a couple of times last night, getting clarificatino from the Knitting Librarian and another pal at various points. So I left having figured out how to read a chart.

When I got home last night I was tired and nearly cross-eyed from eyestrain (I guess I know where my little tax refund is going this year), but I kept working on it when I got home, and naturally screwed it up somehow. It goes fairly fast so after I tried to guess what I had done and fix it, I ripped it out. But at least I could start to see the pattern coming together, so that was good. I was doing well until I randomly knit the wrong row at some point. Not an auspicious start to charted knitting, but it could be worse.

Sock knitting, however . . . that is on hold until I get ahold of some circs. I have 76 tiny stitches cast on to tiny DPNs . . . with 2/3 of a the first row knit. Ha! Methinks not.

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