And, done.

September 17, 2005

I'm finally finished with Branching Out! The last few ends somehow took a week to weave in.



As much as I liked the original pattern by Susan Lawrence, posted in the spring Knitty, I was afraid it would be too narrow. So, after much trial and error, I finally figured out how to chart lace. The key for me was realizing how not only the increases and decreases between rows had to add up, but they had to do so in pattern -- this took a lot of graph paper and pencil crayons. Clearly not rocket science, but it took my brain a little while to get all of its ducks in a row on this problem. The chart for just the even rows and excluding the edging (see the original pattern for details and the rest of the pattern information) looks like this:



I included color for the three vertical bars (one at each side, one in the middle), and for the diagonal lines separating the leaves, as this made the chart much easier for me to read. If you'd rather one without the extra green, try here. (Mad cool, free knitting font from Aire River Design)

I know that a lot of people had trouble memorizing the pattern. I found that taking pencil crayons and making the printed-out image look like this helped a lot:



I'm sure the more lace-adept will find this quaint. :-)

I used exactly two balls of Madil's All Seasons, color #202, on size 3 needles and once I had the pattern set it took three months to finish. The finished, blocked dimensions were 6" x 60". I loved this yarn dearly (which is good, because I wildly overestimated and have three balls left over), and I found the pattern satisfying if occasionally slow-moving. Having every other row off from the counting was nice -- I don't know if this is a typical feature of lace, not having done much before, but it always felt like a bonus round to get to purl wihtout interuption. Yay for finishing projects!

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