Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I love colours!

Have I told you that I suck big time reading lace chart? I think I have. For the 2 and a half lace projects (or 3? I'm not sure if Ella is a lace project.), I knitted from the written instructions almost entirely. I did try the charts with Ella, but that just didn't work. So, though not being a person big with new year resolutions, I do wish I can improve on this aspect in 2006.

To improve, I need something to work on. Remember this? I went through Clue 1 (1-36 rows) without too much difficulty. But when it came to Clue 2 (37-78 rows), the number of stitches per row was starting to get big. I quickly gave up after I messed up in the first 10 rows. Then, there were other projects occupying my time. The Mystery Shawl 2 is a good chance for me to work on my lace chart reading as that's almost the only info I got from the clues.

So, I frogged the first attempt and started afresh. But when I came to Clue 2, I ran into almost the same problem - as the charts are getting more complicated, the squares and the symbols are getting smaller. I just got dizzy looking at them! But I thought there must be a way to get over this. Yes, there is. The solution suddenly occurred to me while I was ripping:

Colours! I need to keep things simple. So, orange for the yo and k tog clusters and green for clusters of 5 knit stitches. The green clusters are the most important as I wouldn't get disoriented counting how many stitches I have to knit between the yo/k tog clusters.

The result? It did help me enormously. From time to time, I still missed a yo or miscounted the stitches. But I have completed Clue 2 (78 rows) already and am moving into Clue 3 (79-116 rows).

Like Husband likes to say, there is always a solution to any problem. ;)

12 comments:

Janine said...

What a great idea! I have just had a Duh moment as to why I haven't thought of it before. I am struggling to keep track of where I am on the Frost Flowers and Leaves shawl now that I am on chart two and we are knitting lace on every row. sometimes it is yo k2tog, other times it is yo ssk and all other dereases in between. If I colour code them I will instantly know whch row I am following instead of my eyes jumping to the row above or below. I always used to do this when I was cross stitching so why didn't I think of it before!

Debi said...

When I first learned to knit at 8 (30+ years ago) there were no charts. Coming back to knitting after a 15 year hiatus, I was so resistant to reading charts until I did just what you did, color coder the different stitches, except mine was a complex aran. It worked like a dream. Now, 3 years later, I MUCH prefer to work from charts! So, you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Somethine else that helps enromously is a magnetic board! You keep the magnet on the line youre working and your eyes focus *right there* on the magnetic strip! Have a look here:
http://tinyurl.com/7kwag

Pumpkin say HI Auntie Agnes! Thanks for the compliments on Mom's new Market Square Bag!

claudia said...

Interesting concept. So you really don't know what this shawl looks like, do you?

Liz said...

I've always color coded certain charts. Especially in cross stitch when symbols for different colors are so similar it's the only way I can keep it straight!

I'm looking forward to seeing what this mystery lace project looks like!

Jerry said...

:-) That's a great way to help you along. My cross stitch charts look like a 60's psychadelic poster by the time I'm through with them LOL! I've yet to try to knit lace...maybe it's time to tackle that next. Keep up the great work!

Laura said...

I've always colored cable charts, but never lace charts. In fact, I've never thought of coloring lace charts! However, I often have to photocopy lace charts to 150% to 200% to make me happy.

Laura.Y said...

that's a really cool way to do it! Btw, love that bomber jacket you did. u look great in it..:)

nona said...

What a clever solution to your problem! I will definately use this trick on my next lace chart. I love knitting -- there is always something new to learn or an interesting problem to solve!

Ruth said...

i do colors too!! sometimes my eyes get tired if the charts are too small. but i mark up my chart as i go along... the hardest part for me to follow charts is losing my place and forgetting where i am. =P so i purchased one of those magnet boards and use one of the magnets as my "bookmark". =)

erin said...

Good idea! I'll borrow it for sure.

candsmom said...

That's such a great idea, Agnes. Thank you!! I'm going to use it right now, as I'm sick and tired of ripping out 1000+ stitches on my stupid, whoops, I mean lovely, Kiri shawl. ;-) I keep getting the different symbols mixed up and I don't know why your colors idea didn't occur to me earlier. Definitely a good idea! Take care and thanks again! :-)

Lolly said...

That really is a novel idea - so simple and so effective. Charts make my eyes cross, but I love colors, so this may just work for me!

Hope you are well ;)