Lace knitting involves lots of awkwardness and sometimes you have to work to make it as pleasant as you can. There is a chart to read and if you screw up there you’re in deep trouble, yarn overs which can be easy to miss and decreases where the slant is important and needs to be kept track of. Lace knitting is beautiful, the more complex, the more beautiful. It’s hard to resist.
Can we remove some of the pitfalls? Knitting Techy Talk begins here.
First of all you need Markers. In the body of this lace sweater I was working 20 repeats of the pattern. Without markers I could make a mistake in the second repeat and not realize until I didn’t have the correct number of stitches at the end of the round. That would be the end of lace knitting for me, right there, that round. The knitting would be winging it’s way across the room as the air turned blue. I did that with my first lace project. I have learned a few things since then: Use Markers.
With markers after every 10 stitch repeat, how far wrong could I go? Believe me I corrected quite a few errors within those 10 stitch repeats as I was knitting this top but I didn’t have to rip rounds back. (OK, I admit there was that one section I had to rip back but I was already so far down that I didn’t mind doing it.)
Unfortunately, for this stitch pattern the markers created a problem. Sometimes you just can’t win.
The Double Decreases (the inverted V) at the end of the repeats are the problem. Once the markers are placed the Double Decreases used in this pattern are awkward to work. The 3 stitches involved in this decrease are numbered on the chart and you can see that the Marker is between stitch #2 & stitch#3. There lies the problem.
This pattern uses this Double Decrease: Slip 1 stitch knitwise, knit 2 stitches together, pass slipped stitch over. Easy enough until … you add in markers for each repeat.
This is really how it works: slip stitch#1 knitwise, slip stitch#2 purlwise, Remove the Marker, Replace slipped stitch#2 back onto the Left needle, knit 2 sts together (sts #2 & #3), pass first slipped stitch over and Replace the Marker. AWKWARD.
I decided there needed to be a change. You’re allowed, I’m allowed, we’re all allowed to mess with patterns. I changed that Double Decrease to a Center Post Double Decrease.
Center Post Double Decrease: Slip 2 stitches together knitwise (sts #1 & #2), knit 1 stitch (st#3), pass 2 slipped stitches over.
With the markers in place this really works as: Slip 2 stitches together knitwise, Remove Marker, knit 1 stitch, pass 2 slipped stitches over, Replace Marker. DONE.
Yes, it looks different but the ease of knitting made it totally worth the change.
I like the result.
Thanks for reading,