Thursday, November 4, 2010

Ask A Ravenclaw

Peck settles down on Soprano1's shoulder with a new note clutched in his claw.

Dear Soprano1,

I have ripped every single part of this lace pattern back and re-knit it.  If I can't get it right, I am going to frog the whole thing and give the yarn to the Merry Beasts for nest making, confetti, and stringing marshymallows on.

HELP, please!!!  Thank you!

--Coming Unlaced.

Dear Unlaced,

For this week's answer we turn to the fabulous SFCorgi, owner of Tryst and Radar the Agility Doggies and soon-to-be Mama of Baby Corgi.  Her ability to commune with lace is renowned throughout Ravenclaw Tower.

In this post, SF Corgi gave advice to KnitWit685, a fellow 'Claw, who was having lace issues.

  • First of all, make friends with that chart. Try not to translate it into words in your head. Be the chart. Look at the nice diagonal lines made by the yarn overs. See the yarn overs in your work and how they line up? Look at any nice lines that are made by decreases, too. And you know what notion is your best friend? Highlighter tape.
  • As you are knitting, pay attention to how your work lines up with the previous rows. If anything is out of alignment, try to catch it immediately.
  • Uh-oh, you found a mistake! The #1 most common mistake in lace knitting is a forgotten yarn over. You’ll probably catch this on the following right side row. Do you need to rip back? Nope! Grab a crochet hook.
  • Let’s say you forgot a yarn over on row 4, which was a right side row, and now you are working on row 6. Stick your crochet hook under the running thread between two stitches of row 4, where the yarn over was supposed to be, from front to back. Use the hook to grab the running thread from row 5. Pull that thread through, forming a new knit stitch, and slip it onto your left needle. Bingo, a shiny new yarn over without ripping back!
  • Sometimes I notice I really screwed something up. But I still hate tinking, so I engage in Advanced Error Correction Techniques. To do this, I determine what section needs to be repaired - maybe one stitch pattern repeat, or even just part of it. I slip the stitches for that section off the needles and scoot the rest of my stitches away from the needle tips so no extra ones fall off.
  • Then I grab dpns in the same size (or sometimes a size smaller). I unravel the selected stitches to wherever the mistake started and leave a ladder. Then I carefully knit them back up, one row at a time, using my dpns. Lace Kninja!
I have used this advice myself, dear friends, and it is some of the most helpful advice I've ever read.  SFCorgi has proven her Lace Kninja status multiple times with beauties like this:

So, off with you, make friends with your charts and Knit Some Lace!!!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

lace kninja! i love it!!
thanks for the tips (: