Friday, February 5, 2010

Mystery Shawl 16 - Clue 2

I finished up clue 2 tonight.  I am really liking how this shawl is turning out.  But I couldn't have made it this far without the assistance of Frederica von Fish.  To keep track of my place on the chart I use a magnetic board.  I have a long magnetic strip that so far has been long enough for all the charts I have used in lace knitting and I place it above the line that I am currently knitting.  This lets me see how the row that I am currently working fits in with the pattern that I've already completed.  But this pattern is a bit complex, and I was having trouble keeping my place in the line.  Enter Frederica von Fish.
I picked up a set of these cute little fish magnets last summer at Bead & Button and they have been schooling on our magnetic message board in the kitchen.  Aha, says I, perhaps I can have Fred here point out my place on the line, like a bouncing ball in a sing along.  So now she sits above the lace motif that I am working on the magnetic strip I use to mark my place in the chart.  As I finish a motif I shift her to the next one.  No more losing my place, and not having to worry about that frees my attention so I can concentrate on making sure the lace pattern is correct.

Other tips for lace knitting - write in the number of knit stitches for any stretch over 4, and highlight anything unusual.  For triangular shawls it is the practice to repeat the chart around a center stitch.  Sometimes the chart is not symmetric.  Depending upon the asymmetry I may make a new chart for the repeat.  In this case the asymmetry was minor so I simply highlighted the motif to remind myself to flip it.

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