Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Still here Tuesday

Originally uploaded by knitswithasilentk
I was going to make this a photo-less entry, but I hate it when there are no photos, so I went into my photo archive and found this, a beautiful pizza The Sweetie made. The dough is made via a no-knead method, and sparked a recent flurry of homemade breadmaking, from the Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day book. This pizza, the recipe that started it all, is from the King Arthur Flour company's blog, Baker's Banter. We made the potato, brie, and carmelized shallot (we didn't have the time to carmelize the onion, but shallots carmelize quickly in a pan), and it was so good we made it 2 or 3 more times that week!

I'm working on a Circle Dishcloth. Somewhere out there, I saw someone's who had said hers looked like Easter eggs, and I got it in my head to make one by Easter.

  • I cast on Saturday, with the 46 stitches recommended. I knit the first two rows (purl, knit), then got tired and went to sleep.

  • Sunday, I decided that I would prefer the eggs to stick out in reverse-stockinette, and be framed in stockinette, so I marked up the pattern swapping purls for knits. To reverse the rows I'd already knit, I knit another row.

  • Edited to add: I started on the colors, with the reversing of knit and purl, and when the green purl bumps stuck out against the smooth stockinette, I realized that "just swapping knits and purls" won't work. I should follow the pattern, and if I want it reversed, I can figure it out with another cloth.

  • I then looked at how wide it was and decided it was way too wide for a dishcloth. It was about 16"! I subtracted 6 from 46, got 40, still too wide. Subtracted 6 again, got 34, that looked about right. Ripped.

  • Cast one with 34 stitches. Re-read the pattern. "k4, (sl2, k4), k4" is 6n + 8, which 34 is not. Double check math. Change to 38 stitches. Rip.

  • Cast on 38, knit 3 rows (I'd figured out that the pattern writer used long-tail cast-on and omitted a row of knitting, but I always use knitted cast on so I needed another row), and started pattern with contrast color. Got to end of row, where I had just knit 4 and had 4 stitches left. I'm short 2 stitches to slip before ending with knit 4.

  • Redo the math. How can it be that 46 is the right number, and 38, is not a good number, when 38 is 6n + 8 or 6(n+1) + 2 (that is, the other pattern row is "k1, (sl 2, k4), k1")?

  • Rip anyway, stick with "subtract a multiple of 6" to make a smaller cloth. Cast on 34. Knit first 3 rows. Switch to contrast color. Make it across the row with the right count. Think, yay, I'm finally making progress! Make it to the 8th row of the CC and notice how the cloth has shrunk. It's now just larger than a sponge. That's why the stitch count was so generous to begin with. Rip.

  • Cast on with 46, as the pattern suggests, and resolve to FOLLOW IT. Mutter about stupid 6n + 2, 6n + 8, 46 is not either of those.

The next day I figured out the math problem. The pattern says "K4, (sl 2, k4), ending with k4". In my opinion, "ending with k4" is not necessary to say, but if you read it as reassurance instead of an additional instruction after the repeated part, then we get 6n + 4, which 46 is, thus making the math work out.

I'm so glad the world works now.

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