Friday, November 09, 2007

It's Not Rocket Science

Still, one should be able to replicate one's results, shouldn't one? Else one's work was nothing more than a fluke. Happenstance. A mere fortuitous event.

Which, believe it or not, brings me to the Huckleberry Scarf. I am indulging myself, making one for me in the yarn Shelley sent, even though I only have two pairs of booties, one Baby Surprise Jacket and a Huckleberry Scarf for the Christmas Market.

There are a lot of people looking/coming by because of the Huckleberry Scarf (well, a lot for this blog). Even though they don't comment, it seems possible they're having as hard a time on the whole "pick up 115 stitches" as I did. So, despite the fact that they don't comment, I feel the need to correct my previous post.

You see, I have never been able to pick up 32 stitches again, not since that first edge. This leads me to believe that I only thought I knew what I was doing. Not that the basic idea isn't sound, just that I don't know how to do some of the higher mathematical functions. Like divide. At least, I don't know how to apply them to knitting. What does it mean when one has 32 (or 30 or 31) stitches, wishes to turn them into 115 stitches, and therefore divides 115 by 32 (or 30 or 31)and gets 3.X where X equals that odd little decimal that represents the remainder? This is fine in mathematics, but in knitting it's so many tenths of a stitch. What's a poor frustrated neo-knitter to do with part of a stitch?

All right, so I did eventually figure out that I should always round up - in the case of the HS that means getting 4 stitches out of every 1. And I did learn that I like the end stitches to be single stitches. I don't know why. It just satisfies some odd craving in my soul for punctuation. I don't particularly want to admit this, but it took a fair bit of puzzling to figure out that the higher .X was, the more single stitches had to be turned into 4. Still, the fact that my answer was 3.X meant I was going to have to compensate somewhere (sounds so much more elegant than "fudge," don't you think?)

Despite my conviction that I should be able to do all this in my head, I resorted to manipulative's.

Okay, okay. I drew it out. We can't really dignify what I did by calling it a chart. Maybe a graphic. My thought was, if I really pay attention this time, really plan it out, really write it all down and use stitch markers and count, I'll be able to fly through the other end. Because now I'm obsessed. I really like this scarf. I think it would be fabulous in Sea Silk. I want to see how it looks without bobbles. Or with open bobbles. Or with a picot edge (which I don't know how to do, but how hard can it be?). I can get away with this, because they'll all go to the Christmas Market and I won't have the embarrassing evidence of Huckleberry Mania lying around the house.

A few other details. Because I care how the exposed edges look, I used the crochet cast on (oh come on, it's fun, just remember to move your yarn behind your needle each time),

I slipped the first stitch of each row purl-wise with the yarn in front,

and I bound off in purl.

Anyway. The final solution? The one that worked twice in a row? Pick up 31 stitches (this will take a little bit of finagling on the 2nd edge but it can be done). K1, *KFBFB 7 times, KFBF, KFBFB 6 times*, KFBF, repeat part between **, K1. Honest to God - 115 stitches. I counted.

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