Friday, November 9, 2012

Lace Collar for Sylvia

Long time no post, but been working on a few things (: Due to the recent crochet binge, a friend at church noticed my lace work and asked for a lace collar. At first, I'd made a straight strip of lace, emulating the style from my Japanese book. I adapted the pattern a little to widen it.

She liked it, but she decided that she'd use it as edging for a blouse, as she preferred a round collar. So I lent her some books, and she asked for any edging from "Knitted Lace of Estonia".

I chose this one, because it looks quite smart and not too fussy, plus the pattern was quite easy to do:

See the progress after the jump!

The idea was to have something wide enough to fit under a collar on a blouse so it would peek out. My only challenge now was how to add shape to a straight edging. I decided to add a 5 st panel between repeats and decrease every few rows. (See the 'flat' edge between the two 'triangles' of eyelets).

Even after some precise calculation (I won't bore you with the math, but you can read it in boring technicalities below), I ended up adding one 5 st panel too many and what's worse, the collar was far too long. I discovered this about 10 rows into the pattern (about halfway through), but I was not 100% happy with it, so I ripped it out :'( and started again. Previously I'd cast on 265 stitches, this time I cast on 235. Much better! (Okay, I lied... I cast on 240 and found I'd made the same mistake: I'd taken out 2 pattern repeats, and so I should have taken out 2 x 5st panels too, but I only took out one. I cheated by doing 5 x k2tog spaced out over the bottom row which is knitted plain. You can't really tell they are there ;) )

If I had 4 repeats (R), I'd need 3 gores (g) to go between the repeats, like so: 
No. of gores = no. of repeats -1 
15 rep x10= 150st (basic repeats x 15)+ (14 x 5st) = 220 (add the gores - 15 repeats, so 14 gores)+ 11st = 231 (add the 11 extra)+ 4st = 235 (add 2 st on either end) 
I made a mistake with my calculations and I'd actually ended up with one extra gore: 
5st -g-R-g-R-g-R-...-R-g-R-6st 
 Not really sure how I did that, because now I've recalculated it the numbers make more sense. Never mind! 
 Remember, if you are making this to measure, the cast on edge will be longer than the final required length to go around a neck. My tension swatch meant that I'd need 15 repeats (161 st) to suit the recipient's requirements, but I'd need to start with 235 st, not 161 st. I know this sounds a bit 'duh' but it sure is an easy mistake to make.

See the final product being blocked!

You can see my knitted 'gores' more clearly here:

More technical info!

Total time required, about 7 hours max (I did some while watching a film in the dark, so that bit was slow). Not sure about yardage. I used 3.5mm needles with cotton thread which got me a gauge of 20st to 6.5cm (width-wise, as height was less important here) on a stocking stitch swatch (I know you ought to do it with the full lace repeat, but I was lazy okay?).

So there we are... I'm excited to take the pins out and weave in the ends so I can finally be done with it!

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