Sunday, August 27, 2006

And Now Another Word

Today DOES INDEED taste like artichokes and used motor oil. For years I've been saying "Don't say it or I will see it," and now it appears the same goes for flavors of the day.

It's the ass end of summer, when you're finally warm enough (plenty warm, thankew, looking forward to winter even though it shivvers us something fierce, it does)and it's not only hot but muggy and thick. You're swimming in bisque without seasoning, gluey and dull.

So the weather has a lot to do with the ennui. (What is it like to be on whee? Not as much fun as you'd think; it's a draggy low rather than a high. Put down the whee pipe and get moving already!)

Working on the last couple of projects of the year. I had some dull neutral yarn that needed to become the centers of some blankets--
--and that became a project in and of itself.

The motif was too sugary-girly in white . . .
. . . so I decided to do counterpane centers instead.

Then I remembered why I hate counterpane centers--they're quite fiddly as written, especially this one, which has you increase via a yo at the beginning of each row. Additionally, there's a bunch of sewing, and when you stripe the plain knitting, you have a bajillion ends per quarter square to weave in. It's almost as much sewing as knitting, which is why this project is a tour-de-force.

I can't reduce the number of ends when I knit the striped parts, but I for sure can reduce the ends in the white and the fiddly sewing bit. I've been knitting the squares in the round, casting on for four of the quarter-squares and working a p1f&b in the increase stitches.

Start with 12 sts on DPNs, work the four leaf motifs, work the flanking leaves and move the square to a circular needle as soon as practicable. Keep it on the circ until the white part's done, then knit back and forth on the circ until the first striped part is done.

Cast off the last stripe, move one to the right, and do it again until the whole square is off the needles. Et voila! One painless counterpane square.

The monsoon's breaking once more. Off to go knit on the covered porch, in the rain. A moment of cool in a long summer of hot.

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