17 July 2011

Gonna Rip It Up...

Remember how last year I started an ambitious lace project, a circular shawl called Rose of England? It was in hibernation for a while, since the rows were getting long (~1200 sts each) and I was never in one place long enough to remember where I was, let alone make any progress, but I hauled it back out recently and have been giving it a lot of attention. I had done about half a dozen post-hibernation rows as of last week, when I hit a snag. Starting a new pattern row, I got into the third of 40 repeats in that row and realized that in the previous pattern row, I'd screwed up over half the repeats in a way that couldn't be fixed on the fly.

I had to rip back. Two rows. Almost 3000 stitches, total.

Did I mention this is fairly complex lace? (For those of you who've made it, I was in Part G where the leaves start branching out.) There are YOs and SL2, PSSOs and all manner of other holes and bunches (no nupps, thank goodness), and I'd spent hours wrestling with the last mistake I made (somehow removing an entire repeat in a netting-like section and not realizing it until the next chunk of solid patterning started), so I wasn't exactly enthusiastic about having to fix this one.

Over the course of two or three lunch breaks, I meticulously picked up stitches with the same needle that was in the rest of the piece (because I only have one US#2 that long), working my way around, dropping stitches off one end of the circ after I had picked up below the error. And y'know what?

It worked perfectly.

I was terrified as I unraveled the two dropped rows, hoping I'd managed to catch every stitch at the correct point in the pattern, but it turns out I've been at this knitting thing long enough that I do, miraculously, know what I'm doing.

Since then, I've re-knit those two rows (paying close attention to the pattern this time), and am back where I was, ready to continue. Only another two dozen rows until this sucker is finished!

I'm trying very hard to forget that two dozen rows works out to something like 30K stitches. It's not working, but I'm still trying.

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