Tuesday, August 15, 2006

It was only a matter of time

Today's post was supposed to be a discussion (for "discussion" read "Kate on her soap-box") of what makes a good knitting blog, but events have overtaken me.

Last evening, I returned from The Bridge in Bidford, after a wonderful dinner (heartily recommend this place, if ever you are passing) to discover the gizmo I use to stop the stitches of the WRS flinging themselves off the needle on the floor. The knitting was where I had left it, but the gizmo wasn't. This did not bode well. I snatched up the knitting (without even taking off my hat) and discovered about 20 stitches had made a bid for freedom.

There is no picture. I was in shock. I had left 'im indoors, his two offspring and their cousin, with a pan of fish soup, a foccacia in the oven, the plates warming, the table set. I returned to mayhem (at least on the knitting front, the soup was eaten, the washing up done). What on earth had they been up to? "Nothing," according to 'im indoors. I don't suppose we shall ever know the truth. Suffice to say there are bad books and people are in them.

I did the best job I could of snatching up the rogue stitches on a skinny dpn and went to bed in disgust.

In the cold light of day - it was just as bad. The knitting elves had not been active in the night-time. I had managed to retrieve most of the stitches. About fifteen had not run anywhere and just needed to be correctly oriented on the needle. However, there was a horrid bit (in the most complex part, naturally) where five stitches had run down a few rows.

The first thing I did was get some polystyrene (still not thrown away after the latest electrical purchase); cover it with a pink cloth (black would have been better but I don't have black napkins); place the knitting on top and pin it out so I could see the worst:

Ready to start

Base of triangle here is a dpn with four stitches that have fallen two rows down. Left needle contains the stitches I have managed to pluck up. Right needle contains the stitches that were unaffected. The red pin is holding the first loop of yarn that needs to be used out of the way. The second loop of yarn is going across the top of the picture, between the two stitches on the original needles.

Next thing? Refer to the chart and isolate the part that needs to be recreated:


The right arrow is indicating the first stitch on the right needle. The left arrow is indicating the first stitch on the left needle. Here we can see that there should be five stitches on the dpn and not four. That was a missing yo which was easily replaced. Following the chart, I recreated the first row - that's the one above the heavy line on the chart. It looks like this:

One row done

Here you can see the five stitches on the dpn. The final loop is held out of the way with the purple pin.

Follow the chart again. Recreate the final row. This was a bit dodgy because it contained the dreaded "yo, sl1, K2tog, psso, yo" (that the little triangle on the chart). It's lucky I'm the loose woman because that meant I had plenty of yarn to play with. ("Play" is hardly the word, but you get my drift.)

This is what it looks like at the end of the repair:


and this is what the "correct" motif looks like:


Can you tell the difference? I don't think I can and I'm absolutely sure the fellow on the running horse won't have a clue.



ambermoggie said...

You did a marvellous job and I can't see the difference. Well done yo0u:)

Dave said...

Wow. I was actually holding my breath as I was reading. And I actually gasped when I saw the part of the chart you had to work with. Yikes! Well done !!

Susanne said...

Well DONE!!!! Anybody near or far couldn't tell, good for you. Hope you know the world awaited the end result with their collective breath held :) Yikes I would have pitched a hissy fit.

Marie said...

oh, wow, that's beautiful repair work. Very impressed!

Heather said...

Oh dear God. That might have made me sick. You did an amazing repair job!

Opal said...

Oh well done. I was holding my breath while I was reading this too. The drama! The drama! Thank goodness here was a happy ending!

Mary-Lou said...

it's bad enough if you're picking up and you were only doing yf, k2 together faggoting type lace. Well done! - done a fantastic job

DianeM said...

Breath held here too, what a nightmare but brilliant save job! Someone needs to be buying you some yarn-shaped 'sorry' gifts I think ;-)

Fred said...

Having just finished my first lace project which had a few nightmares I can definitely appreciate the time you spent correct the dropped stitches. You should remind those people that pointy sticks can be a dangerous weapon when wielded by an angry knitter!

Zooks said...

NOOOOOO! I was holding my breath all throughout the reading of this post, while trying to stave off the memories of my WRS dropped stitches.

I'm so happy that you recovered the dropped stitches are knit up a fantastic repair. Well done!

allisonmariecat said...

Wow, what dedication. It looks wonderful again...I'm so glad all wasn't lost.

Jane said...

Day-am girl! You're really GOOD! I would have had a heart attack myself. Now I know how to try to effect a repair should I have the same misfortune. Brilliantly done!

susoolu said...

Beautiful repair job - very impressive (when I dropped stitches, I failed so miserably in my attempt to reconstruct the WRS, that I just gave up and started again - so just awe-inspiring!).

Wee Quantum Furball said...

Amazingly wonderful repair job! I am in awe.

Aida Costa said...

Oh my - very well done!!! No, I can't see the difference. I've saved the webpage because you did a brilliant job of explaining your process. If I ever need to fix something that complex, it's great to have a reference, even if the thought does make me hyperventillate!

I'm glad for you that you got it sorted out, I can just imagine how paralyzed with fear you must have felt.

Aida Costa said...

P.S. - Next time, lock those gits out of the house and let 'em starve!!!

Stephanie said...

Brilliant. I would have still been sitting there staring at it.

Sandra said...


What more can be said!