December 7, 2006
Introducing my second finished object for the Red Scarf Project. This is the Woven Pattern Scarf from the book Vogue Knitting Scarves Two, which I checked out from the library. I only started it a few weeks ago, so it worked up really quickly. No surprise there, I guess, since it calls for bulky yarn and size 11 (US) needles. I used two full skeins (100g/143 yds each) of Plymouth Encore Chunky in a red (shade 9601) that’s a bit brighter than I’d like but was the only one my local yarn shop had in stock. The scarf in the book has fringe, but I skipped that part; I don’t think it needs it, and this way I was able to just knit until I ran out of yarn and make a nice long scarf. It’s about 68 inches long by 6 inches wide. No fringe also means the college student who gets it won’t have to deal with it getting all tangled in the wash, but that’s not to say I won’t put fringe on my next red scarf if I think it’d look better that way.
This is the first even slightly fancy stitch I’ve tried to do. I was worried it’d be hard, but it wasn’t too bad. It’s all knit and purl and slip stitches, and once I figured out which way to do the slips (purlwise) it went pretty smoothly. Of course I made mistakes now and then but I usually caught them before I’d gotten too far. The book didn’t show the back side of the scarf, so I was surprised to see how it looked all bumpy and wavy. It’s as interesting as the front side, I think. I used my KnitPicks convertible needles for the first time on this project and they worked pretty well. They’re just about as slippery as the Addis, which is nice, because I need all the help I can get moving stitches around. I did pull one of the cables out of its cap but the set came with two that size so I just switched over. The needles would occasionally start unscrewing from the cables but that’s probably because I didn’t tighten them down with the little key, just twirled them on with my fingers. The tips are a lot pointier than the Addis I’ve gotten used to, and because I somehow manage to poke myself with the tips a lot my fingers would start to hurt. I got better at not doing that as I went along.
I did have to do some tricky (for me) ripping to make a change after I’d gotten a fair chunk done. The pattern calls for a purl at the end of every row, so that’s what I was doing, and then I noticed that the two edges weren’t looking equally good. One was nice and smooth and one was bumpy. That would not do. I figured out if I did the last stitch the same as whatever the rest were in that row (knit on knit rows, purl on purl), both sides would look similarly smooth. Ideal. I didn’t like the idea of ripping back everything I’d done so far, so I thought I’d try just undoing the bumpy edge and picking the stitches back up with a crochet hook in the proper orientation. Wonder of wonders, I was able to do just that and the sides matched. I felt very clever.
After that, it was just knit, knit, knit, until the yarn was all gone but for about a foot, which was not enough to do another two rows of the repeat. I haven’t decided what comes next. There’s a chevron scarf that I’ve got some variegated yarn picked out for; I think it will work up pretty quickly once I figure out the first few inches but I’ve read and re-read the directions and they’re just not clicking. So maybe I’ll do something simple with the rest of the Swish instead. I’ve got an image of a really stripe-y scarf in my head, but that means weaving in lots of ends; I’m not particularly good at that so maybe I should do it in the round and hide the ends inside but that will take twice as long as a flat scarf and I’ve only got until mid-January or so before I have to ship them out. Choices, choices.