Étude no. 20: a Learning Experience

Etude no. 20: a learning experience

Aside from just loving the stitch patterns from the Japanese Knitting Stitch Bible, I have been wanting to apply some of the things I’ve learned to my own stitch designs.

This is my first attempt at pulling in some ideas to use in one of my stitch patterns. I am both happy about it while at the same time not feeling that it is a good enough stitch pattern to want to share the instructions.

On the one hand, I feel as if I’m starting to learn how to use columns of stitches worked through the back loop, how to use twisted decreases, and how to use what Hitomi Shida calls knot stitches. On the other hand, I just plain don’t like the result.

So why share it? Mostly because this kind of thing happens all the time to me when I’m learning how to design things. It happens to other designers too. It all takes practice and repetition, and time for the back of the brain to absorb the lessons that are there to be learned. It’s been helpful for me to be told that people I admire have their own mistakes that are still useful to them; I hope to encourage others to feel comfortable taking creative risks that don’t work out.

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The physical size of multiple YOs

Playing with yarnover size

A question came up elsewhere online about how to make double and triple yarnovers smaller.

I’ve actually thought about this before, but haven’t used my ideas in my stitch patterns – my secret code method when applied to lace means that I need to chart the lace with a yarnover in every encoded square.

But there’s no reason why someone couldn’t knit my stitch patterns with the methods I’m going to describe below. I do have two caveats:

  1. The stitch count will vary from row to row, and the more times the pattern repeats across the row, the more it will vary. I’m not sure whether this might cause blocking issues or if it would just have the effect of making the row vertically shorter because the stitches would be stretched horizontally.
  2. It requires more thought on the return rows, which makes them less restful.

Even so, it’s a handy way to think about it. (Also, this can be a useful method for coping with having made a single YO instead of a double or triple.)

The important thing to realize is that when there’s a double or triple yarnover on the right side row, it doesn’t actually increase the knitting by that many stitches. It just makes a single large new stitch. It’s the number of stitches worked into the double (or triple) yarnover on the return row that makes for more than the single increase. Having multiple loops makes for an  reminder of the location for multiple stitches but there’s no inherent reason to have them.

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