Sunday, September 03, 2006

Red Dice

A while back, Carol and I had a short exchange about the challenges of knitting lace with handpainted yarns. Generally, I’m dissatisfied with the appearance of lace garments worked with yarns carrying a lot of contrasts and changes in colour: the lace gets lost in all that colour! Carol offered to dye me up some yarn to experiment with, I suggested “reds”, and a little while later this beautiful skein of “Ted’s Reds” dropped into my mailbox.

When this hop-along started I decided to use the group’s energy to work the project. I wanted a lace pattern that would test the colours, in that they should combine to create a visually interesting fabric without distracting an observer’s eye from the lace patterning. I decided to use a pattern based on a stocking stitch fabric, because lace in stocking stitch is more visually complex than those in garter stitch. (And, as I’m learning, it also highlights weaknesses in your/my basic knitting technique. Oi; I should stop now…)

I remembered the very nice design, “DiceBlue” by Lois Young in the Spring 2004 issue of Knitters. There, it was presented in a fine mohair yarn in a solid colour -- quite a contrast to what I’m working with. I decided to see what would happen anyway. I cast on, told myself to simply follow the instructions exactly as written, and I did -- for 9 rows. The pattern is quite easy to learn, and once you see the underlying structure of the lace, you can toss the printed chart.

My camera was unable to get the colour right (too orange), but the scanner gets it closer to the yarn. Lace always looks disappointing until it’s dressed, but I think that once this is finished and dressed out, it should be really, really nice.


Blogger Carol said...

Ted, I knew you would do something wonderful with the yarn!

2:02 PM  
Blogger Carol said...

I have the same fear of lace and varigated yarns. Yours looks lovely!

4:27 AM  

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