Monday, March 05, 2007

If you're happy that it's over, Clapotis

Hey, five feet wider and I'd have a credenza cozy!

Okay, I caved. I gave in to the Clapotis. The mini anyway. But I needed a lightweight scarf and this just seemed to fit the bill. And really, I had to see what all the fuss was about. Yeah, I know, a little behind the times. In a couple of years, I'll probably get the urge to knit those Monkey socks, too.

Mini miles

The making of a mini
Eh, there's nothing more I can say about the Clapotis that hasn't been said before. It's a brilliant design, easy to knit, and looks much more elaborate when completed than the knitting itself actually is. And seriously, how can you not love a) casting on and binding off just two little stitches, and b) dropping stitches on purpose!

In order to achieve mini-dom, I did two sets of increase rows and 20 sets of straight rows. Yes, that's right. 20. Even the full size only requires 13! The pattern is easily memorized, though, so somewhere around the 4th repeat, I no longer had to refer to the printout. Unfortunately, right around the 8th repeat, the thrill of dropping stitches started to wane. Which means, as I have not yet mastered the art of knitting without watching my hands, the next 12 repeats were sheer, mindless torture. But, with a lighter weight yarn on size 5s, it had to be done.

I missed a stitch somewhere in here and missed a couple of twists somewhere else, but I can't find them now. Which is good - one big plus to having a long ass scarf! And my gauge throughout is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're gonna get. :P I'm pretty sure it grew as the scarf went along in my rush to get the damn thing over with.

Blocking really does hide a myriad of flaws, though. What looked a bit like cat yak turned into a thing of beauty as the dropped rows straightened out and tightened up those twisted stitches. The final dimensions landed at the perfect size, around 6.5" wide x 60.5" long.

Why you so fussy?

Twisted stitcher
I discovered
these excellent notes while Googling about and decided to twist all the stitches on both sides of the drop, rather than just the right side rows. To do this, I did purled those stitches through the back loop on the wrong side, then knitted them through the front loop on the right side. Made it a little more fussy and time-consuming ('cause, yeah, I needed that like a hole in the head), but the result is tighter, neater, and little more symmetrical. And I like symmetrical.

All this and more - with no ends!

Prism is a silk/merino blend created by Lambspun of Colorado, procured by an enabling friend during one of their killer sales. It's a dk to light worsted weight and comes in a monster skein of 565 yards, so I was able to knit the entire scarf without joining a single end, whoo hoo! (Well, except the beginning and end, which is duh, unavoidable.) There was a fair amount left over, too - without a scale, I'd guess there's about, oh, maybe 1/2 to 1/3 of a ball remaining.

It's fabulously soft, the colors are amazing, and it has a really gorgeous sheen. It's not quite as sproingy due to the silk content, but that is but a minor sacrifice to appease the snuggle gods.
Tends to be a bit sheddy while you're knitting, but doesn't appear to be so when worn. Does have some bleeding issues, the water was tinged quite green after the dunk, but the yarn itself didn't lose any color as a result.


So, was it worth it? The eighty bazillion gah!-is-it-ever-going-to-end-I'm-going-to-impale-myself-with-a-dpn-now repeats through the straight rows? Absofreakinlutely. It's lovely, it's soft, it's silky, it's the perfect length and weight for fall/spring, and I really enjoy wearing it.

That being said, I was quite relieved when I bound off those last two stitches (somewhere around 1 am, followed by several victory laps around the living room, hands waving about about like a crazy person, wearing pjs and whisper-yelling (so as not to wake Hubster), "It's done! It's done! It's done! It's done! It's done! It's done!" Good thing the cops weren't driving by.) From now on, when it comes to scarves, I'll stick to more intricate patterns (see Backyard Leaves, sitting there on the sidebar) or heavier weight yarn to make the rectangular miles run by a little faster. Or just learn to knit without lookin'.

Yarn: Lambspun Prism in Baby Fern
Needle: H&S ebony 5, 24"
Mods: Adjusted width and length to scarf size
Lesson learned: Miles of monotony make me mental


Blogger Batty said...

Painful knitting experience, but the end product looks terrific. I love the way it came out in a solid color, and I'm probably going to bite the bullet and knit another Clap. But I'm just not patient enough to do this without variegated yarn so I get to watch the colors change and pool in interesting ways.

I guess I'm easily amused.

5:26 AM  
Blogger bradyphrenia said...

it looks really great, but i know what you mean about being happy that it's over. i thought i was gonna die of boredom when i made mine.

7:01 AM  
Blogger Sparkly Spiral Girl said...

Ok, ok, ok...I'm actually going to finally do a clap! Yours is lovely...

My step-mother should love it. :)

9:53 AM  
Blogger Bezzie said...

You look so professional modeling it! It looks great!

7:14 AM  
Blogger turtlegirl76 said...

Oooh Pretty!

12:54 PM  

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