Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Exorcism of a Cursed Scarf

I'd like to start today's post with a FO from last summer; my Dark Mark Scarf which I knit in a month to wear to the midnight showing of Harry Potter Movie the 6th. I love that scarf, I wore that scarf all winter and I have fond memories of knitting it. It was such an easy, pleasant, mistake-free project that this January I decided it was time to knit another one, this time for my brother.

I've been promising my brother, among other family members, their own dark mark scarves, so I went out and bought the yarn during winter break and cast on, only to discover that I had completely forgotten how to use the double knitting technique. What I failed to realize then was that the whole project had been seriously cursed, and what followed was not really my fault at all.
After frogging several times I hid the yarn in utter embarrassment. When school started up again I made several more attempts to start this project, I obsessively watched the double knitting tutorial at trying to spot what I was doing wrong, but without results. The scarf was cursed. Deeply, deeply, cursed.

I took some pictures to prove it.

Here after successfully casting on and starting the pattern (not as easy as it should have been ) I managed to switch the main color halfway through the row.

And here, you can see that what was supposed to be the start of the nose has become more of a staircase.

Today I finally wrangled the beast into submission, and have managed to get a whole 47 rows in without any major disasters, so whatever hex was on the scarf must finally have been lifted. Whew! To avoid ever experiencing this amount of pain again, here, for future reference, are the things that went wrong:

Gauge: Apparently, too tight a gauge is not good for double knitting, I went up from a US 6 to US 8

Stitch count : The original pattern says to cast on 31 stitches, since you're basically knitting two scarfs at the same time with double knitting, that number needs to change to 62. In addition, you'll be slipping the first stitch and purling the last stitch with both colors, so you need to add extra stitches. Final CO number should be 64.

Slipping the first stitch: It clearly says this in the instructions, but you need to slip the first stitch and then start the pattern beginning with a knit stitch. If you count the slipped stitch as your first knit stitch you will encounter serious problems. (Duh.)

Basic knitting/purling : When you knit, hold both colors in the back. When you purl, hold both colors in the front. Sounds simple in principle, doesn't it?

Now that that's been dealt with, I feel much more at piece with my Knitting.

Until next time,

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